Understanding Lightning And Trees

Tall trees provide shade and beauty to your landscape, but there are times when tree trimming is necessary. For example, you may need to call some professionals to trim your tree so that lightning doesn't strike it, creating a dangerous situation to power lines and your home, as well as possible damage to the tree. Below you'll find information on lightning damage on trees.

Trees That are Most Vulnerable to Lightning Strikes

We have all heard that lighting strikes the tallest object in an area. This fact makes trees vulnerable, but especially tall trees and trees that stand-alone in a field, on a hill or in an otherwise bare area. Though this sounds like the trees are in the middle of nowhere, they are often close to where we live, work and play. These trees are often found in public parks, along golf courses or neighborhood sidewalks and even near houses at times.

How Lightning Damage Appears On Your Tree

Visible damage often takes form in broken branches and occasionally in the form of a scar on the outside of the bark. The tree may also show signs of splintering or peeling bark. These signs indicate you will need to consult your local arborist to see if and when trimming should take place, what type of watering and fertilization routine will help, and if any bark repair or other monitoring is required.

How Lightning Damage Is Undetectable to the Naked Eye

Often times, lightning damages the internal trunk structure or even root structure of the tree, leaving damage that you cannot see. If the root system was severely compromised, the tree will likely begin to lose its leaves and die. If the tree stays upright and gains leaves the following spring, its chances of survival are much higher.

If you notice that your tree is not producing leaves, then it's time to call someone in to trim the tree. If that doesn't revive the tree, it may be time for total removal.

In the case of a potentially damaged tree that may or may not have internal damage, it is a wise investment to consult with an arborist to ensure your property does not suffer undue damage at a later time due to leaving the tree unchecked, since trees hit by lightning can fall in high winds if they are frail from the hit.

Contact a tree trimming company like J&T Tree Co. if you suspect that your tree was hit by lightning. Otherwise keep an eye on how tall your trees are becoming and have them trimmed if you fear that a lightning strike may damage them somehow creating a dangerous situation.