Hurricane Season is Here – Look Up Before The Storm

The Atlantic hurricane season is a time when most tropical cyclones are expected to develop across the northern Atlantic Ocean. It is currently defined as the time frame from June 1 through November 30. What plans should prudent consumers take with the trees in their landscape prior to hurricanes and violent storms? “It is important even for people residing North of the storm’s origin, in areas like Westchester and Fairfield Counties to be prepared,” says Steve Farrelly, Board Certified Master Arborist with Emerald Tree and Shrub Care. “Right now, get your trees as ready as they can be to survive a major storm. Don’t wait until the storm is headed your way.” One of the greatest dangers to life and property during hurricanes is posed by falling trees and limbs. “Larger trees in leaf will ‘catch’ more wind and be subjected to increased mechanical stresses. These stresses increase the chances of either branch or whole-tree failure,” explains Andersen of the TCIA.

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“Preparing trees for a high-wind event should be done well in advance of the storm season. However, it’s not too late to start preparing, now. To help ease these dangers, have one of Emerald Tree and Shrub Care’s Certified Arborists come perform a free property evaluation. Doing this will help determine potential weaknesses and dangers.” In the meantime, you can look at your trees for the following warning signs:

  • Wires in contact with tree branches. Trees may become energized when they are contacted by electric wires.
  • Dead or partially attached limbs hung up in the higher branches that could fall and cause damage or injury.
  • Cracked stems and branch unions that could cause catastrophic failure of a tree section.
  • Hollow or decayed areas on the trunk or main limbs, or mushrooms growing from the bark that may indicate a decayed and weakened stem.
  • Peeling bark or gaping wounds in the trunk could also indicate structural weakness.
  • Fallen or uprooted trees putting pressure on other trees beneath them.
  • Tight, V-shaped branch unions, which are much more prone to failure than open, U-shaped unions.
  • Heaving soil at the tree base is a potential indicator of an unsound root system.

A tree is a living, growing, changing thing, and its integrity and stability could change over time. Don’t assume that a tree that has survived nine severe storms will necessarily survive a tenth. Simultaneously, not all large trees are dangerous. Contact Emerald Tree and Shrub Care today for a free tree inspection (914) 725-0441 or email at

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