Bracing is a method of adding rods to a tree to provide additional support for damaged and weak growth areas. It is sometimes used in conjunction with cabling or tree ties on trees that need additional support.
1. Weak Branches
Branches should attach to the main trunk at an angle near 45 degrees. If the angle is any wider, the branch is considered weak — especially if it also happens to be large and heavy. This is because gravity is going to put downward pressure on the branch, increasing the chances of it breaking. Storms and windy conditions increase the chances of this happening.
2. Split Trunk
A trunk can split for myriad reasons, but usually, it's due to weak wood and uneven weight on one side of the tree. If the split is minor, which means it doesn't go down more than a few inches, the tree can be braced to prevent further damage. This type of bracing is also sometimes called splinting. The idea is to attach the trunk back together with a bracing rod so that the tree can reseal the wound and grow back together.
3. Uneven Crown
Uneven weight is a problem on large trees that aren't pruned to be symmetrical. The heavier weight on one side can cause limb loss or trunk splitting. It's best to prune symmetrically. If this isn't possible, such as if the tree grows under power lines and must be trimmed back, bracing can be installed to help support the heavier side of the crown.
A leaning tree often needs a combination of both cabling and bracing. The cabling supports the tree on the opposite side of the lean, providing counter-force so that the tree doesn't fall over. Eventually, cabling may even help pull the tree straight. Bracing is installed to support the heavier branches on the leaning side so that they don't give in to the pull of gravity.
A v-crotch is a natural split in the trunk. Usually, it occurs as a thick trunk that then splits into two before the crown. These trees are more prone to splitting due to weight issues or wind, so bracing them before damage occurs can help you avoid damage later. Braces are installed very similarly to the method used for a split trunk, and the goal is also similar — to hold the two trunk sections together so they don't split apart further.
Contact a tree service to learn more about the bracing options available.Share
14 May 2021
Elm, ash, walnut, maple, apple — these are all gorgeous trees, but they all have their own preferences in terms of care. Maple trees, for example, need to be pruned later in the season once their sap has begun flowing. Elm trees should be pruned in winter when insects aren't around in order to protect them from the emerald ash borer. A good tree care company will treat each of your trees as individuals, customizing care to their own specific needs. Still, it's important that you, as the tree owner, understand those needs, too. Read the articles on your website, and you'll soon have a pretty good grasps on the basics of tree care.