A landscape truly comes alive when a beautiful tree stands tall. Aesthetically imposing, but also providing shade for plants and wildlife, they’re an embodiment of nature itself – so it comes as no surprise that a dying one is a sad sight indeed.

There are many reasons why they would die out, but sometimes it’s not obvious why. It’s important to stay vigilant and perform regular inspections to prevent yours from dying, because when identified early, it can still be saved. 


A withering one can also lose branches that may fall on top of your car, your home, or even your family, that’s why a tree trimming service is so important. 

Here’s what you need to know about the signs of a dying tree and how to care for them!

“Well done is better than well said. – Benjamin Franklin

1. The bark is brown and weak

The tree’s bark is often affected as it becomes weaker. The first signs are a darker bark that seems to easily fall off without much effort – the bark is supposed to work as a protective layer, so having it fall off is never a good sign. The dying oak tree symptoms in particular are very clear.

Keep an eye out for bark that has already fallen, for weak spots forming around the trunk, and for the color.

2. The leaves look frail and dry

This is an obvious sign of a tree in trouble: too many leaves that look unhealthy mean you should take action quickly. For us humans, if you’re ever feeling thirsty, it’s because your body is already dehydrated. The same goes for trees – dry leaves means it’s in need of water for a while, and it’s one of the most obvious signs a tree is dying.

But it’s not just about water. A sterile soil that lacks sufficient nutrients will also cause them to slowly wither, even if they’re hydrated, and that will also compromise your garden. Make sure your soil is healthy!

3. There’s too much dead wood

Dead wood isn’t always a sign yours is dying, it could just be a weaker limb or a lack of nutrients during growth – as long as you take some time to make sure it is hydrated and the soil is healthy, you shouldn’t worry, unless you’re seeing dead wood all the time. 

In that case, something is very wrong. 

Be sure to trim those dead parts off to prevent them from taking resources away from the healthy parts, but also to prevent them from falling over your property and your family. 

4. You’re noticing root damage

This is one of the hardest signs to notice since the roots are almost always hidden. Keep an eye out for foliage seeming thinner and smaller than usual, dead branches, and yellow leaves. If you suspect this, you can dig a bit to see the root for yourself and confirm if there is noticeable damage.

If you’re having trouble in identifying why yours is dying and need some help, calling a local tree service! In more extreme cases, it might be better to opt for tree removal.

5. It starts leaning

Trees naturally grow taller and stronger, so one that starts leaning and gradually seems more and more crooked is not a healthy sign. They will only do that when they’re too heavy on one side, which should never happen if you’re performing tree trimming… so the alternative is that they’re sick or dying. 

Need more help with a dying tree? Talk to a tree service today and get free quotes in your area!


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