Winter is officially here and that means more snow is headed over the Rockies to cover Denver. Most of our early winter snowstorms are powder or partial powder, which don’t usually weigh down trees. Spring snowstorms tend to have the denser, wetter snow, even ice in some situations. It’s the heavier snows that cause more snow damage.
Whether we’re facing a new delivery of powder or a heavy spring snow, trees are vulnerable to bending, breaking, and uprooting. How do you know if a recent snow damaged your tree? What are some preventative maintenance steps you can take to protect your trees from snow damage?
How to spot signs of snow damage in trees
The first place to start is with knowing the warning signs of snow damage. If your property is under a new blanket of snow, take a look at your trees. Obvious snow damage, such as broken branches and missing limbs, aren’t always easy to see. Bundle up and walk around your property to check for snow damage. If any of your trees have weighted-down branches with snow, use a broom to sweep under the branch and lift the snow off.
Trees of any size can also uproot with high winds during snow storms. Important: if you notice any of your trees in contact with power cables, keep clear from the site and contact your local emergency response department. Do not attempt to inspect your tree or remove the damaged cable yourself.
How to protect your trees from snow damage
The first step to preventing snow damage on your trees is knowing your risk areas. Look for branches rubbing together. These branches are more susceptible to bending and breaking because of their initial pressure. Trim away branches that are long and low-hanging because they’re more likely to pull the tree towards the ground.
Look for signs of the ground being disturbed around the root system. Trees that uproot from high winds are probably already loose around their foundation. What seems like a solid tree from a casual glance may actually be a once-mighty tree with a weak root system.
If your trees do experience snow damage, our Fielding Tree & Shrub Care team is here to help. We are south Denver’s favorite arborist and we serve all across the Douglas County, south Denver, and Jeff Co areas. Contact us to start a conversation about your trees today.