Three Questions to Ask Before Removing a Tree

Many homeowners are fortunate to have a property with mature trees and shrubs. Although it is always best to save a tree when you can, there may be times when you question tree removal as an option for aesthetic or safety purposes.

Here are three questions to ask yourself before making a decision:

1 Is it causing structural damage? Tree roots can grow to the surface and change the drainage pattern across a property. In some cases, they can block water and keep it from running away from a house or yard. A tree planted too close to a house can lift a walk, rot the eaves and drop juicy berries that are then tracked through the house.

2 Is it making the property difficult to use? If a tree robs you of the ability to do what you would like to on your property, then removing it might be the answer. But first, try to include it in your plans. The trunk can be incorporated into a deck or patio design. The effect of making an opening in a deck for the tree to grow through is quite pleasing.

3 Can tree removal help the space? If healthier and more desirable species will be planted in place of the one that was removed, it can be good for the environment. In a natural woodland setting, removing certain trees can help the ecosystem. For example, the removal of leggy, weak pines will make space for the more desirable native hardwoods.