Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Tampa?
- 2 Does the City of Tampa Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
- 3 Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Tampa?
- 4 How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Tampa?
- 5 Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Tampa?
- 6 What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Tampa?
- 7 How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Tampa?
What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Tampa?
Many trees in the Tampa area are colorful, even if they’re all vulnerable to certain diseases and disruptions that could lead to them dying. The city is known for having numerous shade and ornamental trees with eye-popping flowers during the blooming season.
Some shade trees seen here include:
- Bald Cypress
- Florida Maple
- Live Oak
- Loblolly Pine
- Purple Tabebuia
- Yellow Tabebuia
Many of the ornamental trees seen in Tampa are:
- Bottle Brush
- Crape Myrtle Natchez
- Geiger Orange
- Japanese Blueberry
- Silver Buttonwood
While all look beautiful along Tampa’s city streets and residential properties, the sight of one of them dying is more than noticeable. Another type of tree seen often in Tampa is the palm tree, which was afflicted with a horrible disease called lethal bronzing back in 2019. It was the result of an insect called planthoppers that feed on palm tree sap.
Once the planthopper is infected with lethal bronzing, it spreads it to all other palm trees when going on sap feeds. This sickened many palm trees in Tampa, leading to many needing to be removed and replaced.
Other diseases are often seen in Tampa trees. Some of these are:
- Fusiform Rust: A fungus also attacking palm trees.
- Brown Spot Needle Blight: A fungal disease that affects longleaf pine trees in Tampa.
- Laurel Wilt: Another fungal disease afflicting Laurel trees. It comes from the Redbay ambrosia beetle.
- Ganoderma: A disease going after all tree root systems.
Tree roots are always sensitive and can sometimes be disrupted by more than just diseases. Construction crews, for instance, can sometimes hurt root systems, particularly because many tree roots extend multiple feet from the tree itself.
Mother Nature also plays a major role in affecting Tampa trees. With extreme droughts some years, and then extreme rains other times of the year, it can cause various tree problems from lack of water or floods. Of course, when hurricanes hit, trees here topple in an instant.
Tampa even has a long list of insects frequently wreaking havoc on trees in the city. With everything from the ash-plant bug to the magnolia scale, insects are a continual concern for the health of Tampa trees.
Does the City of Tampa Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
In 1981, Tampa was recognized as a Tree City USA by the National Arbor Day Foundation. They take their trees seriously there and value their protection.
Based on their city code (Section 27-284), all trees are protected by local laws. You have to stay compliant with local regulations when working around Tampa trees.
A Tree Removal Permit (TRE) is required if you need to remove a tree on your property for any kind of construction project. Any tree 5″ or greater in diameter requires a permit from the city before removal. The only exceptions are if the tree is dead due to invasive species.
All homeowners in the region can remove a tree from their property with a permit, but have specific rules on planting new trees. Your new tree has to grow six feet away from underground utilities, plus 30 feet away from power lines if the tree is 25 feet tall.
If your tree is located within city property, Tampa even has a tree-planting program called Tree-Mendous Tampa.
Just remember that if a tree falls on a specific property line, certain rules apply on who is responsible. Take some time to learn about what you do if you’re a homeowner, a renter, a landlord, or a neighbor. Much also depends on if the tree is on your property line or on Tampa’s city property.
Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Tampa?
Things can sometimes get complicated when a tree falls on your Tampa property. Since you likely have neighbors nearby (and city property lines just as close), deciding who removes tree debris can lead to confusion.
Take a look at how this applies in each scenario.
If You’re a Homeowner?
When you own your own home, you’re likely going to be responsible for cleaning up a fallen tree on your property. Keep in mind if you have homeowners’ insurance, they’ll be the ones inspecting the damage and giving you the money to take care of any repairs/clean-up.
Insurance companies are also responsible for hiring the company that cleans up the tree on your property. In most cases, the insurance company will enable enough coverage to pay for the damage. Sometimes, they’ll find ways to make it look like it’s partly your responsibility due to the tree being diseased.
If You’re a Renter?
Those of you who rent property in Tampa can usually expect your landlord to take care of a tree falling on the property. Much of this depends on if your rental agreement says they’re responsible or yourself. Always check your leasing contract carefully to determine whether you’re the one who has to pay for a tree cleanup. You might be responsible if you planted the tree yourself on the grounds.
Otherwise, your landlord hires a tree care service to clean up the mess, or they clean it up themselves if they have the proper skills.
If You’re a Landlord?
Unless you created a rental agreement that says your tenants pay for tree removal, you’re going to be responsible.
Things get a little more complicated when a tree extends from your rental property over to someone else’s property.
If You’re a Neighbor?
Your next-door neighbor might have a tree that carried over onto your property or vice versa. As most law firms point out, Florida law says if a healthy tree falls on both your property and the neighbor’s property, you’ll likely have to split the cost of having the tree removed. Homeowners’ insurance usually helps cover those costs.
It’s a possibly different scenario if an unhealthy tree on your property falls on your neighbor’s side. They may have a case against you, and this can lead to a lawsuit if your tree caused damage to their home. Your neighbor would have to prove you took no action in removing or caring for the tree that fell.
Now you know why it’s so important to take care of trees if they look diseased. Tree Triage can take care of those issues for you.
How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Tampa?
Soil is sometimes a direct cause of a tree either flourishing for decades or slowly dying out. When a soil survey was done in the Tampa area decades ago, it was discovered that 300 soil types exist.
The most common are sand, sandy loam, clay, peat, and muck. These are all known to expand and shrink based on how much water they get. Clay is the most prone to this, but sandy soils tend to suffer from erosion.
Heavier rains usually occur in summer, potentially leading to clay soils shrinking, hence possibly stressing older trees. Long, dry spells can do the opposite in expansion.
Overall, these soil types are very good for most trees in the area. Did you know half of all tree species in North America are in Florida? It’s no wonder so many trees have potential issues in Tampa based on the wrath of nature and soil types.
Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Tampa?
The weather definitely affects how your trees hold up in the Tampa area. Hurricanes there are obvious, and far too many of them have wiped out older trees. Yet, it’s more than just wind that brings down trees in this region of Florida.
Tornados are another weather phenomenon bringing down trees here. These storms sometimes occur more often than hurricanes.
Flooding can also occur virtually overnight in the aftermath of hurricanes or other severe weather. When trees are inundated with water, it can weaken tree roots and cause the tree to topple over.
As beautiful as the trees are in Florida, the sometimes extreme weather places risk on your property if you have a lot of trees planted. You just need to know what to do and where to turn when a tree inevitably goes over.
What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Tampa?
Based on the storms Tampa gets, trees are going to go over on power lines more often than not. Never attempt to remove tree debris on your own if any trees go over on those power lines.
Your local power company is going to be the one responsible for removing the tree debris in most cases. They have professionals who know how to do the job right and with proper safety procedures.
Sometimes the power company will hire a professional tree service to get the job done. What’s most important is to call your power company immediately if your tree fell on power lines near your property. Power may be out in the meantime, making time of the essence to get workers there to remove the debris safely.
How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Tampa?
What you pay to have a tree removed is going to vary based on the situation involved.
Types of Weather Events
Tampa can get some nasty weather during hurricane season, leading to messy work when trees fall. After a major storm, tree removal can be a long and arduous job. Chances are fairly high that the work could take several days, especially if the weather has not calmed.
If this happens, costs can go up for labor time.
Size of the Tree
A lot of older trees still exist in the Tampa area. These can be very complex to remove based on their trunk size and the amount of foliage they have. When adding in stump removal, expect to pay sometimes up to $100 more.
Overly thick stumps can take a full day to remove from your property. Trees over 100 years old are good examples.
The Pricing of the Tree Service
All tree services are going to have different pricing tiers. Most of them have average pricing categories, with the average in Tampa being anywhere from $750 to $1,500.
Always look for fair tree service pricing, no matter the situation.