Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Danbury?
- 2 Does the City of Danbury Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
- 3 Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Danbury?
- 4 How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Danbury?
- 5 Does Weather Affect Tree Health In Danbury?
- 6 What if Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Danbury?
- 7 How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Danbury?
What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Danbury?
Emerald ash borers (EABs) are one of the biggest threats to Danbury’s trees. As the name suggests, these beetles almost exclusively infest ash trees, but they have also been found on fringe trees. EABs are native to Asia and were first detected in Connecticut during the summer of 2012. Prior to EABs being present in the state, ash trees were already succumbing to a disease called ash yellows. According to the state’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), ash trees now make up about 3% of Connecticut’s forests. White ashes are the most common variety in the state. Besides being a vital part of Connecticut’s timber industry, white ash trees are an important part of the urban canopy in cities like Danbury.
You can help control the spread of emerald ash borers by monitoring the ash trees in your yard. One of the first signs of an infestation is thinning in the tree’s upper canopy. Affected trees will also have “D” shaped exit holes in the trunk. If the bark is peeled back, “S” shaped tunnels that are created by burrowing larvae will be present. Trees with EABs also attract more than usual woodpecker activity. If you find an infested tree, you should contact the state’s Agricultural Experiment Station at (203) 974-8474 or email CAES.StateEntomologist@ct.gov.
A newer threat to Danbury’s trees is the Spotted Lanternfly, which was first detected in the U.S. in 2014. The Spotted Lanternfly has the potential to create even more damage than emerald ash borers, as these insects attack a variety of trees. DEEP estimates that more than 47% of the state’s forest trees could be susceptible to spotted lanternfly damage. These insects damage trees in two ways. First, they suck out the sap. Then, they secrete a sticky liquid called honeydew. Honeydew attracts other insects and promotes mold growth. Signs of an infestation include clusters of visible insects or eggs; the presence of sooty mold; and sap weeping from the trunk. If you have a tree that you think is infested by spotted lanternflies, you are encouraged to contact the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station at ReportSLF@ct.gov.
Another tree issue that Danbury residents should be aware of is the potential damage that roots can do to underground plumbing. The root system of a mature tree grows deeper and wider than you might expect. Tree roots can curl around a water service line, essentially “choking” the pipe. You’ll want to be aware of the tree roots not just in your yard, but any that might be creeping into your neighbor’s as well. Because in Connecticut, it’s possible that you could be held liable for any damage caused by tree roots.
Does the City of Danbury Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
The City of Danbury typically does not get involved in tree removal problems that arise on private property. However, if your neighbor isn’t taking care of a tree that is dying, dead, infested, or in danger of falling, it could be deemed a safety hazard by the city. Then your neighbor may be forced to take action.
Residents should be aware that the city has an ordinance that pertains to “public trees on private property.” These trees are under the jurisdiction and control of the City Forester. According to section 42-162:
“Upon receipt of the written consent of a property owner, the City Forester may plant, trim, spray, care for and preserve shrubs and shade trees located on the private property of such owner and lying within ten (10) feet of the limits of any public road or other public grounds for the purpose of shading or ornamenting any such road or grounds.”
If you have one of these public trees on your property, you must obtain permission from the city before calling us to remove it. If you are unsure if you have a public tree in your yard, you can contact the Public Works Department at (203) 797-4537.
Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Danbury?
Property owners are responsible for fallen tree removal. And according to local attorneys, it’s the placement of the trunk that determines ownership. Occasionally, we do see trees that straddle a property line. Those are called “boundary trees” and are the responsibility of both homeowners.
A fallen tree is often a safety hazard and always a headache! If the tree is your responsibility, you’ll want to take care of it right away. While it’s impossible to cover every scenario that could come up, here are some guidelines for fallen tree removal in Danbury.
If you’re a homeowner?
Just under 60% of homes in Danbury are owner-occupied. This is an important statistic because homeowners are responsible for fallen trees, even if they land off your property. If you do have a fallen tree, your first call should be to your homeowner’s insurance. Most policies provide coverage, especially if the tree fell due to inclement weather or a natural disaster. If the tree is on the smaller side and you have a large deductible, you’ll need to figure out if it’s worth making an insurance claim.
If you’re a renter?
If you’re a renter, whoever owns the property is responsible for fallen tree removal. Unless your lease agreement explicitly states that you must take care of fallen trees, you are off the hook. One exception to this is if you did something to cause the tree to fall. If that’s the case, your landlord may turn to you to cover the cost of removal.
If you and your landlord are involved in a fallen tree removal dispute, Connecticut’s judicial district courts handle landlord-tenant disputes. The Judicial District of Danbury can be reached at (203) 207-8600.
If you’re a landlord?
Assuming that you are a landlord who also owns the property, you are responsible for removing any fallen trees. As we mentioned above, if the renter did something to make the tree fall, you could hold them liable for the costs of removal.
If you are a property manager that cares for but does not own the property, you will need to speak with the property owner. Ultimately, they are responsible for the costs. But as the property manager, they may ask for your help in arranging removal. That really depends on your job description and the scope of your duties.
If you’re a neighbor?
Nothing is more “un-neighborly” than an argument over trees. If the fallen tree’s trunk grew entirely in your neighbor’s yard, they are responsible for removal. This is true even if the tree landed in your yard. Hopefully, they will remove it in a timely manner. If it’s right after a storm and the tree didn’t fall on a structure, power lines, or roadway, please try to be patient. We receive a lot of calls for downed trees after a storm, and we prioritize those that are safety hazards.
While we’re on the topic of neighbors and trees, back in 2017 Connecticut’s Chief Attorney stated, “if a tree is growing on one person’s land but its branches or roots encroach on a neighbor’s land, the neighbor can cut off the branches or roots up to the line of his or her land.” Ideally, you should ask permission or notify your neighbor first. However, know that the state law is on your side.
How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Danbury?
The soil in Danbury is generally fertile and well-draining, which is perfect for growing native trees. In fact, the city has 52% canopy coverage.
In the 1960s and ’70s, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) performed an extensive soil survey of Fairfield County. While this survey is pretty heavy on scientific lingo, you may find it helpful.
Does Weather Affect Tree Health In Danbury?
The City of Danbury is split between two USDA Plant Hardiness Zones – 6a and 6b. This designation means that the absolute coldest winter temperatures we could expect are between 0 and -10°F. Any tree that is planted here must be suited for these temperature ranges.
High winds from severe weather always have the potential to damage and even topple trees.
What if Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Danbury?
If a dead tree on your property is near a power line, you’ll need to remove it as soon as possible. A gust of wind can easily cause dead and dying trees to fall. Please don’t treat this as a DIY task. Contact with a live wire, either directly or through a conductive object, can cause injury and even death. Call us to remove any trees near power lines. We work with the local utility company to ensure that all work is done safely.
If it’s your neighbor’s tree that is near a power line, we know this is a scary experience. You can talk to them if you feel comfortable. If that’s not an option or time is of the essence, contact the power company. Most of Danbury is serviced by Eversource (formerly Connecticut Light & Power), (800) 286-2000.
If it seems imminent that the tree will fall, call the Danbury Police Department at (203) 797-4611. An officer can come out and secure the area.
How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Danbury?
When people call us, their first question is usually, “how much does tree removal cost?” Each job is different, but we can give you a ballpark estimate. The average cost for tree removal in Danbury is $779. Many projects will fall within the $663 to $895 range. The final price tag can be significantly lower or higher depending on several factors.
If you have an emergency
Weather permitting, we typically work Monday through Friday, regular business hours. You can expect to pay more for tree removal if we need to come out ASAP, in the evening, over the weekend, or on a holiday.
The height and circumference of the tree
The overall size of a tree factors into the final cost. The bigger and healthier a tree is, the more expensive it is to remove it. On the flip side, you can expect to pay less for us to remove dying or downed trees.
If you want the stumps removed, too
The cost of tree removal usually does not include stump removal. Some homeowners choose to leave the stumps as-is, but this isn’t always practical or safe. Stumps are a tripping hazard and can be difficult to mow around. And insects and other pests usually move in pretty quickly. If you want us to grind the stumps, you can expect to pay an average of $122.00 per tree. The price of stump grinding depends on the circumference.