Beyond Diseases: 6 Other Reasons Trees Dry Up

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Beyond Diseases: 6 Other Reasons Trees Dry Up

22 May 2019
 Categories: , Blog

A serious disease can ravage and kill even a mature tree, but diseases are not the only threats your trees face. Here are other things that can kill your trees.


Ironically, serious floods can cause trees to dry up in several ways. First, the floodwater can drive nutrients deep into the ground, making it difficult for the tree roots to get the necessary nutrients. Secondly, the floodwater can expose the tree roots or weaken the roots' hold onto the ground, making it easy for the plants to topple over due to wind action. Serious flood water can even push a tree into a leaning position or even topple it. The degree of flooding, duration of flooding, and tree species can determine the extent of the damage.


Trees need water to survive so your trees can easily die if you starve them of water. Some trees, such as pear trees, need more water than others. Younger trees need more water than older trees whose roots go deep into the soil. Trees in poor drainage areas also need more water than trees in well drain soils.


A typical bolt of lightning is millions or even billions of volts of electricity. Such a powerful flash of electricity can strip the back of a tree or dry up a tree in a matter of days. Tall trees are more likely to experience a lightning strike than shorter trees. The intensity of the lighting, the overall health of the tree, and the part of the tree that is struck are some of the factors that determine the chances of recovery of a tree after a lightning strike.

Construction Damage

Negligent construction activities can also damage a tree and cause it to dry up. For example, heavy construction machinery can compact the soil around a tree's base and cause it to die (compacted soil has less water, air, and nutrients). Excavation can cut a tree's roots. Construction machinery and damage tree trunks and branches.

Poor Trimming or Pruning

Tree care is good, but if you do it wrong, you can kill your beloved trees. For example, pruning a tree improperly can damage the tree fatally. Say you cut too many branches, make the wrong cuts, or trim the true at the wrong time (say, if the tree is starved of water and nutrients or disease). The tree might not recover from the damage.

Strong Wind

Strong winds can also cause fatal damage to trees. Winds can damage tree branches, break trunks, and even uproot trees. Tall trees, physically weak trees, trees in waterlogged soils, and trees with heavy foliage are particularly susceptible to wind damage.

A tree service such as Blue Ox Tree Care of Indiana can help you decide whether or not you can save your damaged trees. For trees that are beyond help, don't forget to remove them as soon as possible so that they don't fall accidentally and cause injury and damage.