Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Decatur?
- 2 Does the City of Decatur Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
- 3 Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Decatur?
- 4 How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Decatur?
- 5 Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Decatur?
- 6 What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Decatur?
- 7 How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Decatur?
What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Decatur?
Pitch Canker is caused by the fungus Fusarium subglutinans. It is a leading cause of deformity and growth loss in planted pine trees in Decatur and throughout the state. If you have shortleaf, longleaf, slash, or loblolly pines in your yard, they are especially susceptible to this fungus.
Symptoms of pitch canker include:
- Cankers on the bole, branches, or shoots
- Yellow, brown, or dark gray needles
- Copious amounts of sticky resin on the wood
- Thinning leaves near the crown of the tree
While we still have much to learn about pitch canker, fungal infections are usually exacerbated by humid weather and damp conditions. At this time, we think this disease is spread mainly through deodar weevils and subtropical pine tip moths, but it can also crop up after a bad weather event.
Brown Spot Needle Blight
Brown Spot Needle Blight affects pine trees all around the US, and it’s common in Decatur. Of all the native trees affected, it hits the longleaf pines extremely hard, resulting in defoliation and far fewer seeds. A community of longleaf pines struck by brown spot needle blight might decrease their reproduction by as much as 75%. If you’re concerned about deforestation in Alabama, you should be worried about this fungus.
You’ll recognize brown spot needle blight by:
- Irregular, small green or gray spots on the bark
- Needles dying at a rapidly
- North side of the tree losing more needles
The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) says one can use an appropriate fungicide to battle “the blight.” But this super-strong solution is usually only available to professionals like us because it’s a hazardous chemical. In other words, brown spot needle blight needs to be managed by our expert arborists.
Annosus Root Rot
Annosus Root Rot is another serious concern for Decatur homeowners and nature lovers. It can reduce the number of trees in a forest in only a few years. It affects trees of every age, but younger growth tends to be more susceptible. Root rot will also bring pine bark beetles to your residence and then impact the other trees and even your neighbor’s trees!
Signs of Annosus root rot are:
- Trees growing extremely thin and wispy
- Oddly colored leaves
- Otherwise healthy trees suddenly fall without warning
- Pine Bark Beetle swarms
- Visible conks
Annosus root rot can quickly become a problem for an entire neighborhood, especially since some trees don’t show any symptoms of illness. They just drop suddenly and do damage to structures and landscaping. According to the Alabama Forestry Commission, you’ll need to call in professional tree services like Tree Triage.
Does the City of Decatur Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
There are no resources suggesting the city will help to pay for tree removal on private property. That’s usually left to the homeowner/landlord.
However, Decatur offers some solutions for fallen tree limbs on public property. The city will work quickly to remove trees/limbs that fall onto public streets or drainage ditches.
According to Decatur’s Solid Waste Department, residents can place fallen tree limbs at the curbside to be picked up with your regular weekly trash. The city asks that residents use the gray or green carts for smaller yard trash like grass clippings and small shrubbery clippings rather than piling them on the street for the loader trucks. You can call Decatur’s solid waste department at (256) 341-4740 with questions.
Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Decatur?
When a tree falls in Decatur, the party responsible for removal is the property owner. It’s all about the property lines. Homeowners, landlords, tenants, and neighbors often have questions about this, so let’s clarify the issue.
If you’re a homeowner?
If you’re a Decatur homeowner and a tree falls on your yard, you are 100% responsible for the cost of tree removal. If the tree falls onto your house or other structure, your homeowner’s insurance will pay for damages and removal–less a deductible.
Here in Alabama, the deductible on homeowner’s insurance ranges from $500 to $2,000 on average. That’s the amount a homeowner will need to pay upfront even if the insurance policy covers the tree removal. It’s essential to know your deductible amount because insurance won’t pay for a smaller claim. Put another way, if you have a $1,000 deductible, you’ll be paying for a $995 tree removal out of pocket.
If you’re a renter?
Renters usually don’t have any responsibility for tree removal in Decatur. That’s up to the landlord. Don’t worry. They have insurance for this. Your first step is to contact your landlord or property manager. Be sure to take some pictures with your phone. Your landlord might ask you to send photos of the fallen tree and any damage, and they can help us give your landlord an accurate quote for tree removal.
Also, if a tree fell and damaged your belongings—like your car—your landlord will be responsible for those repairs. Again, this is what insurance is for, so don’t hesitate to contact them.
If you’re a landlord?
Like homeowners, Decatur landlords are responsible for tree removal at their rental properties. It’s vital to move forward as fast as possible with tree removal at a rental property because fallen trees are dangerous. It would be a disaster if the fallen tree somehow injured a tenant or their child!
Usually, your commercial real estate insurance or landlord protector policy should cover tree removal if it damaged your structures, less the deductible as always.
The only exception might be a commercial lease that explicitly describes tree removal, landscaping, and yard care as the tenant’s responsibility. These leases are rare, and you’d probably know if you’re involved in one.
If you’re a neighbor?
Sometimes trees fall over several property lines, and it can bring a lot of drama to an otherwise peaceful neighborhood. Decatur has a reputation for friendly, hospitable neighbors, but these relationships can become strained quickly when a tree falls.
Know that every property owner is responsible for the portion of the tree that is on their property. Sometimes, the best thing is to have a neighborly conversation with the other property owners and split the costs.
How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Decatur?
We mentioned this above, but it’s time to take a closer look. Trees love the soil in Decatur. Per the USDA, it’s very deep, well-drained, and moderately permeable. There is plenty of room for deep-rooting species to dig down in the nutritious silty soil. That’s why hundreds of tree species love to call Decatur home.
Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Decatur?
Weather conditions can affect trees from day to day and from one year to the next. Here in Decatur, trees can be injured by the wind in the winter months. During the late spring or early summer, delicate new growth can become sun-scorched. Either of these situations can lead to the development of cankers.
What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Decatur?
Dead trees and tree limbs on power lines are extremely hazardous. Don’t ever attempt to remove a branch or entire tree from power lines. Leave that to the professionals.
- Decatur Utilities (DU) supplies power to 30,000 locals. You can call them at (256) 552-1400 to report an outage or report dead trees near power lines.
- River City Electric also serves Decatur and surrounding cities. Their number is (256) 822-2721.
If you’re not sure who is responsible for a specific power line, contact local law enforcement or the city. They will get the correct provider involved safely.
How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Decatur?
Prices for tree removal in Decatur can vary based on several factors, but most jobs fall between $200 and $1,900. If we were to pick the top three issues that affect the cost of tree removal in Decatur, we’d say the size of a tree is always key, as well as its condition, and finally, its location.
It makes sense that a giant 100-footer will be more expensive to remove than a tiny 12-foot sapling. Frankly, bigger trees require more of our resources: more labor, more fuel, more trucks, and so on. They can also do more damage to structures and create hazards for our tree removal technicians.
Healthy trees are less hazardous to remove. They tend to break and splinter less, and we don’t need to sterilize our equipment after the job. So tree condition has a significant effect on the cost of tree removal in Decatur.
Trees never seem to fall on a convenient day or in a convenient way. They can fall on cars, across three property lines, over some power lines, and into a ditch. We have seen it all! The more complicated and hazardous a tree’s surroundings are, the more complex the removal and its cost.
Lastly, know that our tree removal team gets inundated with work after major storms. We find ourselves working overtime weekends and holidays after a severe storm downs many trees. Our laborers are highly trained technicians who execute a dangerous job, and they deserve to get paid accordingly. So expect tree removal prices to increase any time there is a major catastrophe.