Co-dominant Trunks: Common Cause of Tree Loss
February 17, 2014
After the big ice storm here in DFW, you probably saw a number of very large trees split right down the middle…several large trucks splayed out in each direction. It’s devastating to lose a large established tree, especially when there didn’t seem to be any visible health issues. However, there is a serious hazard lurking in many large established trees: Co-dominant trunks.
Does your tree look a bit like a conjoined twin with two or three equally strong trunks that meet in the middle? While it may look lovely in the landscape, it probably means your tree has co-dominant trunks. There is a good chance the tree could be weak at that juncture and split in an ice storm such as the one we had in December. When you have two or three very large and heavy co-dominant trunks, it’s difficult for the lateral branches to support the weight of all that ice and snow.
To avoid a co-dominant trunk altogether, it’s best to prune off one of the co-dominant branches while the tree is still young. If you have an established tree with this sort of growth defect, you can use cabling or bracing it to keep it strong.
The loss of a tree can be a devastating ordeal as we become very attached to them. However, if a tree must be removed, then for the safety of your family and home, we can help you with this.
Spring is a great time to have us inspect your trees for possible co-dominant trunks and to resolve the issue to keep trees safe and beautiful in your landscape.
Posted: February 17, 2014