Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Tree Issues In Matthews?
- 2 Does the City of Matthews Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
- 3 Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Matthews?
- 4 How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Matthews?
- 5 Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Matthews?
- 6 What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Matthews?
- 7 How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Matthews?
What Are the Most Common Tree Issues In Matthews?
The Town of Matthews is a suburb of Charlotte located in the Southeast region of North Carolina. Once an area rich with large stands of trees, the woodlands were cleared in the early 1800s to make way for planting crops to meet the growing agricultural demands of the region. The early settlement was referred to as Stumptown because of the vast amount of trees removed from the area. Today, Matthews is a thriving town center with more than 30,000 citizens.
In 2017, the preservation of existing trees became a priority in Mecklenburg County. Revisions were made to the Matthews Tree Protection and Landscape Regulations and the Tree Ordinance of the Town Code.
In addition to preservation concerns, the town is adamant about protecting trees from environmental hazards, pest infestation, and other diseases.
The biggest concerns surrounding the trees of Matthews include invasive species such as the cankerworm. Each year, the caterpillars cause defoliation in tree canopies. The only course of action against these pests is to band trees to prevent spread. The insects feed off hardwood trees, in particular willow oaks, and thrive on more than 50 species throughout the North Carolina region.
The non-native Emerald Ash Borer is responsible for the death and destruction of tens of millions of ash trees throughout North America. In North Carolina, the variety of ash trees specific to the area are under attack by this destructive beetle. A mild winter and drought-like conditions leave the trees stressed and unable to defend themselves. Signs of infestation include yellowing leaves, D-shaped holes in the bark, and canopy loss.
Fungus is also a common stressor to the trees of Matthews. A tree plagued by spreading fungi often has a history of previous disease.
Does the City of Matthews Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
The Town of Matthews has strict regulations regarding the removal of trees. It also has parameters in place for “trees on private property which constitute a safety hazard or nuisance to the public or to public property.”
Trees with specific significance are considered protected trees and are typically exempt from removal. The same goes for North Carolina Champion trees or those listed on the state’s Big Tree List.
Regulated trees located on private property have special maintenance and removal restrictions. These trees are classified by national, state, county, or Town standards. According to Tree Ordinance 99.07, permits must be obtained from the Town of Matthews before removing a regulated tree from any public or private property.
To promote the preservation of regulated trees in the community, Matthews has established a program to assist property owners with the care and maintenance of their trees. A semi-annual inspection is performed under the guidance of The Matthews Urban Forestry Management Plan.
The Town may require a homeowner to remove a tree if it is deemed a “public nuisance.” A tree that is unsafe, infested, hazardous, diseased, or damaging to public improvements falls into this classification.
Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Matthews?
North Carolina General Assembly Statute 14-128 states, “Where a landowner knows that he has a tree on his property which is in a dangerous condition and which is likely to fall and injure the property of an adjoining landowner, he has a duty to eliminate such danger.”
If you’re a homeowner?
As a homeowner in the Town of Matthews, it is your responsibility to make sure trees on your property are maintained and inspected for possible disease, infestation, or other hazardous conditions. Failure to do this regularly could result in the denial of an insurance claim.
It’s a different story if a healthy tree falls. In North Carolina, if an “act of God” causes a tree to fall, no one is considered to be at fault. Whoever has incurred damages from the incident should file a claim with their insurance company.
If you’re a renter?
Tenants living in rental properties in Matthews are not required to maintain trees in their yards. They are also not required to be involved in the cost of removing a tree or assisting with debris cleanup.
Obtaining renter’s insurance will protect occupants from unexpected damages incurred as a result of a fallen tree. While landlords are responsible for all repairs, a renter may not withhold rent until the issues are remedied.
If you’re a landlord?
Landlords have a responsibility, by law, to provide safe housing to occupants of their rental property. Any fallen tree that causes a safety hazard must be removed as soon as possible to eliminate the risk of injury or damage to tenants.
You cannot charge renters additional money for tree issues that they have no control over. A landlord is responsible for all landscaping issues on the rental property.
If you’re a neighbor?
If a tree from your property falls over your property and damages a neighbor’s house, you are not at fault as long as there were no pre-existing conditions that could have contributed to the tree falling.
A neighbor has to process a claim through their insurance company. Keep in mind if there was evidence of prior damage to the tree that you did not take care of, you could be held personally liable.
How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Matthews?
A soil survey performed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) reveals the soil in Matthews to be “chiefly of residual origin–that is, derived from the weathering of the underlying rocks in place.”
The Mecklenburg series of soil in the Matthews region is three feet deep and defined by a red clay loam.
The Cecil sandy loam soil found in North Carolina forests is conducive to the healthy growth of pine, oak, hickory, poplar, and dogwood trees. Referred to as the “gray land” by locals, the gritty soil is typically yellowish-gray, with a depth of 6 to 15 inches. The texture is light and loose, similar to grains of sand.
If a tree on your property does not seem to be growing, the soil could be to blame. The North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services provides free soil analyses to help residents determine the soil content on their property.
Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Matthews?
According to the Weather Bureau in Charlotte, the region receives approximately 35 to 68 inches of rain each year. Matthews is a prime agricultural area of the state, with conditions akin to healthy tree growth.
The annual temperature is 60ºF, with the coldest day dropping to -5ºF and the hottest day reaching 102ºF.
Violent storms are not uncommon in North Carolina, with the chance of tornadoes increasing annually. After a weather event, the Matthews Public Works Department strives to clear right-of-ways, trim branches, secure power lines, and remove hazardous trees.
When a tree falls because of an “act of God,” residents are asked to help county workers by cutting branches and limbs into four-foot sections and stacking them into small piles for pickup.
What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Matthews?
A homeowner should never attempt to remove or trim a tree that is touching or encroaching upon an active power line. Purdue University notes, “Though it is tempting to try to save money with this “do-it-yourself” approach, the potential for electrocution is not worth the risk.” They are quick to point out, “It is important to recognize when to call a professional arborist.”
Union Power Cooperative provides power to the eastern corner of the Town. They ask homeowners to contact them to report hazardous trees. If necessary, the power company will remove the tree at no cost to the property owner. The homeowner will only be held responsible for debris removal. They are adamant about not attempting to cut down a risky tree on your own. Contact a certified Union Power arborist at 704-289-3145 for assistance.
Duke Energy is responsible for the remainder of Matthews. They will only assist with tree removal if the branches are touching a primary power line. For other lines, the company will shut off the power, so the property owner can have the impeding tree trimmed or safely removed. Contact Duke Energy at 1-800-419-6356 to discuss the dispatch of emergency personnel if needed.
How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Matthews?
The cost to remove a tree in Matthews typically falls between $250 and $1,800. The price varies in each situation, depending upon a variety of factors.
Size of the Tree
It only stands to reason that the taller the tree, the more it will cost. Based strictly on size, the average cost for tree removal in Matthews is as follows:
- Up to 30 feet: $250
- Between 30 and 60 feet: $300 to $700
- Between 60 and 80 feet: $700 to $1,100
- Over 80 feet: $1,100 to $1,800
Typically, most tree removals in the area cost between $300 and $800.
A fallen or dead tree ranges between $100 to $600 to remove from the property. The price is significantly lower because of the reduced risk to our workers and the surrounding structures.
If you would like a stump removed, it will cost approximately $150 for the additional service.
Type of Tree
The type of tree can also be a determining price factor. A heavier tree, such as an oak, may cost more to remove because of the increased labor needed for safe removal.
Removal of pine trees is difficult because of the acidic state the soil is left in after the tree is gone. Lime must be added to the soil to keep the pH level intact, thus creating a price surcharge.
Poplar, cottonwoods, maple, and aspen trees often have extensive root systems and can cost between $1,100 to $1,800 to remove. The hearty trees can grow taller than 100 feet, leaving many homeowners wanting to rid their property of the tree.