Stress isn’t a condition that’s limited strictly to us humans; trees may become stressed, as well.
When a tree is stressed, it can slow the tree’s growth, and eventually even cause death. So, how do you know if a tree in your yard is stressed?
One tell-tale sign of a stressed tree is the presence of abnormally small leaves. Granted, different species and varieties of trees have different sized leaves.
The Raphia regalis, for instance, sports leaves that grow up to 80′ long and 10′ wide! That’s taller than many trees!
But if a tree in your yard is growing abnormally small leaves for its species/variety, there’s a good chance that it is stressed.
Inspect your tree’s trunk for signs of damage. If there are cracks present, it could be indicative of stress. A cracked trunk itself won’t cause stress, but rather it will may lay the groundwork for decay to settle in.
And when the trunk begins to decay, the tree will become stressed and may eventually die. Try to get into the habit of inspecting your trees’ trunks for damage on a regular basis.
A third sign of tree stress is a smaller canopy. Has your tree’s canopy begun to shrunk over the years? When a tree is severely stressed, it may shed some of its leaves while also growing smaller, thinner leaves in the process.
Of course, this means the canopy will also be smaller, which is often indicative of severe stress.
Bark Falling Off
If you see bark falling off your tree, it is probably stressed. Bark acts as a protective outer layer for trees, preventing bugs, bacteria, mold and other foreign invaders from attacking it.
Stress, however, may cause trees to lose this protective layer, making them susceptible to further damage and even more stress.
Premature Fall Leaf Coloration
Another common sign of tree stress is the premature coloring of fall leaves. Typically, deciduous trees and shrubs will change their colors during the first few weeks of the autumn season, turning from green to various shades of red, yellow, orange, purple, pink, blue and brown.
With that said, stressed trees may undergo this change sooner in the year, even before the autumn season arrives. So if you believe that your trees are suffering from stress, pay attention to the color of their leaves in relation to the autumn season.
If we can help with any of your tree care needs give us a call at 512-846-2535 or 512-940-0799 or