Trees are shedding organisms that periodically cast off parts to provide for growth and to manage disease. This natural function has ensured their continued success as the longest living, large organism on the planet.

But the very quality that ensures their survival can make our living with trees a problem. We revel in the shade and beauty that trees provide but are annoyed, threatened or actually harmed by functional necessities of trees. As a result people have developed an ambivalent relationship with the trees that surround them.


 In extreme conditions, even the healthiest tree can fail. There are genuine reasons to be concerned about the health and stability of trees close to dwellings and recreation areas. There is also a need to moderate our actions and rely on sound information when making decisions that may damage or destroy irreplaceable trees. The structural condition of a tree can be assessed in part, by understanding the difference between normal and abnormal growth habit.

Trees produce adaptive growth to compensate for stress loads. This growth changes the shape of limbs and trunks. The shape of these structures provides clues to their internal condition.

Tree Inspection Method
Decay And Defect



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