Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are The Most Common Tree Issues In Saint Louis?
- 2 Does The City of Saint Louis Provide Any Assistance In Tree Removal Problems?
- 3 Who Is Responsible For Fallen Tree Removal In Saint Louis?
- 4 How Does The Soil Affect Trees In Saint Louis?
- 5 Does Weather Affect Tree Health In Saint Louis?
- 6 What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines In Saint Louis?
- 7 How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Saint Louis?
What Are The Most Common Tree Issues In Saint Louis?
Those of us who live in Saint Louis know this city has some of the most colorful trees in the South. One of the most common trees seen here is Dogwood, or otherwise known as Flowering Dogwood.
It’s also the state tree of Missouri, making it a popular choice in many people’s yards. Thanks to bright white and green foliage and flowers, it often livens up any yard space.
Other trees seen in Saint Louis include:
- Eastern Redbud
- American Elm
- White Oak
- Black Walnut
- Eastern Reduced
- American Holly
Many of these trees can bring numerous issues related to rooting problems or overgrowth. However, they can be avoided if the trees are planted correctly. As the Missouri Department of Conservation says, numerous things aren’t killing your trees. They note insects, mulch, and leaf spots never harm the trees in any way. Water doesn’t either, so keep watering.
What often causes problems is lack of pruning. You should always prune your trees in the winter, yet far too many people neglect doing so due to lack of time or other circumstances. In the end, it only leads to trees becoming overgrown and, ultimately, being hazards to people and property.
Another typical issue is root damage. Construction around trees is usually what causes this damage, with work crews not realizing tree roots extend multiple feet. When construction equipment impacts these roots, it can cut off a major lifeline to your trees.
It’s not always humans or construction equipment causing root damage either. Sometimes, it’s herbicides homeowners use to control weeds, or the use of lawn fertilizers. These can often burn tree roots, leading to tree death within a few years.
Insects can be an additional problem, particularly insect borers in Saint Louis. If you’re getting those, chances are your trees are getting stressed. Diseases can often affect trees as well, including funguses. These are far too common and lead to trees looking sick and deformed.
Does The City of Saint Louis Provide Any Assistance In Tree Removal Problems?
The only way to get help removing diseased trees in Saint Louis is to get a grant through The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC). Their program is called TRIM, which stands for Tree Resource Improvement and Maintenance.
These cost-share grants are made for government agencies, schools, and even non-profit groups. Now local organizations can get the money they need to take care of trees that either need treatment or removal.
Missouri Community Forest Council is also involved in the grant program. If you become a recipient of these grants, MDC covers up to 60% of the costs for tree removal or care.
Best of all, the program aids in planting new trees if you have to remove old, diseased trees on your residential or commercial property.
Who Is Responsible For Fallen Tree Removal In Saint Louis?
Trees fall all the time throughout Saint Louis, either from storms or from diseases that loosen the tree roots. Who is really responsible for removing that old tree on your particular property?
Let’s take a look at who has to take action based on whether you’re a homeowner, a renter, a landlord, or a neighbor.
If you’re a homeowner?
Homeowners’ insurance is important if a tree falls on your property. After all, you’ll likely be responsible if the tree happens to fall on your house. Much depends on if the tree was healthy and fell over on your home due to circumstances you couldn’t control.
If the tree was already stricken by disease due to your lack of upkeep, you could be responsible for paying for the removal. A lot has to be assessed here and depends on where the tree was located around your property lines.
Based on zoning laws in Saint Louis, if a neighbor’s tree happens to fall on your house, you have a right to trim it back to where their property line begins. Still, the tree might be located in an area between the sidewalk and your home. This is known as the tree lawn, the small patch of grass with trees along the edge of sidewalks, usually in front of every house.
Should a tree there fall, the City of Saint Louis is responsible for picking up the debris. Known as the Forestry Ordinance, Saint Louis city officials have to either prune the tree or remove the tree altogether.
If you’re a renter?
Those of you who rent your property would have to look at your renter’s agreement to see whether you’re responsible for yard upkeep. Many lease agreements state that the renter is responsible for upkeep on the grounds, with occasional exceptions.
Confer with your landlord about this and whether you’d have to prune or remove a fallen tree on your rented property. In many scenarios, if the tree fell and wasn’t the result of negligence on your part, the landlord would remove it and repair any damage. This might also mean a temporary abatement of rent due to the damage to the property.
If you’re a landlord?
Unless you specified that a tenant is responsible for tree upkeep, you’d be responsible for repairs if a fallen tree damages your home or apartment rental. With weather sometimes wreaking havoc on trees during Saint Louis winters, it could mean a major expense on your part as a landlord.
Be sure to check with county laws based on any tree responsibility. Laws differ based on whether you rent within the city limits, the county itself, or outlying areas of Saint Louis.
If you’re a neighbor?
A tree belonging to your neighbor might fall on your property, leaving you in a quandary about how to handle it. As mentioned earlier, you have a right to trim it back to their property line.
Laws do exist, though, on being able to collect damages if a neighbor damages your own tree. They may have to pay for the tree cleanup or the cost of a replacement.
Saint Louis boundary fence laws make all the difference in the outcome.
How Does The Soil Affect Trees In Saint Louis?
Soil can greatly affect how healthy your trees stay. Different species of trees require different soil types. A lot of trees end up dying, though, because the soil just isn’t conducive to growth for decades to come.
One thing some tree planters do wrong is plant trees too shallowly, leaving the tree roots exposed. All this does is leave the roots more vulnerable to outside damage. Also, a shallow-planted tree is more apt to go over in a windstorm.
The most difficult soils for many trees are:
- Sandy Soil
The three best are Peaty, Loamy, and Chalky. Loamy is considered the best of all because it has a lot of nutrients and drains water the most effectively. Peaty holds water fairly well, and Chalky usually requires some additional nutrients for trees to thrive.
Does Weather Affect Tree Health In Saint Louis?
Inclement weather definitely affects tree health. Saint Louis is known for having rough winters, making it more likely your own trees could topple over. Bad weather can also affect tree health as the U.S. Forest Service reminds.
As they note, climate change is becoming a problem and can begin to affect the quality of the soil your trees grow in. Saint Louis could experience the same thing, especially if warmer summers continue affecting the area.
Most important is to keep your trees pruned in the wintertime so you don’t have to deal with major tree issues when Saint Louis weather is at its worst.
What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines In Saint Louis?
Trees that fall on power lines are the responsibility of the City of Saint Louis. Your local power company may also get involved in bringing in someone to cut the branches falling over the lines.
Never attempt to handle a tree on your own if it falls near power lines. You could get electrocuted if you have no prior experience working around them.
How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Saint Louis?
The cost of removing trees and associated debris is going to vary based on a number of factors. If the tree falls over power lines, it’s going to take more work to clean up the mess.
On average, it can cost around $400 on the low end and as high as $700 on the high end. Remember that part of this might involve stump removal besides, which usually costs an additional $80 on average.
What might most affect the cost for you?
The Size of the Tree
How big are those trees that toppled over on your property? A lot of older trees exist in Saint Louis, some over one hundred years old. The larger the tree, the more it’s going to cost based on labor time. Cutting up a huge tree could end up taking several days.
Even if your tree didn’t fall on power lines, those lines may be right near the tree. Cutting the tree down might mean getting in the way of those lines, leading to a more complex job.
Other hazards might be involved as well, including proximity to homes or buildings.