Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Wayne?
- 2 Does Wayne Township Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
- 3 Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Wayne?
- 4 How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Wayne?
- 5 Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Wayne?
- 6 What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Wayne?
- 7 How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Wayne?
What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Wayne?
From the multiple trees we’ve sent to adorn Rockefeller Center for the holidays to our historic “Moon” Sycamore, residents of Wayne have taken pride in our trees since colonial times. The National Arbor Day Foundation has recognized us as a Tree City USA for well over 30 years. Unfortunately, no matter how well we care for the beloved trees in our shady parks, along our tree-lined streets, and in our yards, they are not immortal. While not every issue will require you to remove a tree, many problems either need it or contribute to problems resulting in tree removal. Some of the more common issues we see in Wayne include:
You may notice tree diseases’ first signs include browning leaves, mushrooms, or fungus growing on or near a tree trunk, dropping leaves or needles, or ugly splotches or growths on the bark. While these are not necessarily damaging enough to kill a tree, they can be fatal for a tree that other infestations, drought, or disease have already weakened. Some more common tree diseases see around Wayne include:
- Cankers — caused by multiple kinds of fungus, cankers are growths spread in unsightly patches across a tree’s bark. As they spread, they limit a tree’s ability to send water and nutrients throughout its structure, eventually causing it to die.
- Root Rot — The Armillaria fungus most commonly causes this fungal disease that destroys a tree from the roots inward. As roots are damaged, their ability to anchor a tree into the ground is increasingly limited until it is likely to fall.
Over the years, as international commerce and travel have expanded, many insect pests are stowaways in shipments from overseas, arriving to find new homes here with no natural predators. Without these predators to keep them in check and a large population of vulnerable trees that lack natural resistance, our forests and urban tree canopy is susceptible to their destruction. Some of the more common pests include:
- Emerald Ash Borer — This invasive insect has caused the deaths of tens of millions of beautiful, valuable ash trees since arriving on our shores in recent years. Emerald ash borers drill into tree bark and make paths through the delicate wood just underneath, where they block the flow of nutrients and water to other parts of the tree. Infestations are almost always fatal.
- Gypsy Moths — Since arriving in the 19th century as part of an ill-considered attempt to revive Massachusetts’s silk industry, gypsy moths have spread to hundreds of millions of trees across hundreds of individual species. Infestations can happen repeatedly, and multiple attacks often kill affected trees.
- Spotted Lanternfly — An invasive insect from Southeast Asia, the spotted lanternfly devours the sap of many of the popular trees around Wayne, such as black walnuts and maples. The lanternfly secretes a sticky substance called honeydew which makes a mess, attracts many stinging insects, and encourages fungal growth on trees where it falls (including cars, houses, and patio furniture).
- Hemlock Wooly Adelgid — This tiny insect damages and eventually kills the hemlock trees which it infests. Hemlock wooly adelgids feed aggressively on our susceptible hemlock trees, destroying one of our most beautiful native species.
While Wayne is safe from most severe weather conditions, which may cause more substantial tree damage in some locations, extended dry periods can stress trees, making them vulnerable to insects and diseases. Hurricanes such as Sandy do hit on occasion, and tropical storms and other weather featuring strong winds can also damage trees in the area.
Does Wayne Township Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
Wayne Township does not routinely provide any assistance to homeowners in response to tree removal needs. The Township regularly removes fallen trees and maintains trees as needed to ensure public safety and protect property. Passaic County likewise takes responsibility for trees along county rights-of-way, including dead, dying, or damaged trees, or anywhere that municipal ordinances don’t specify otherwise.
Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Removal in Wayne?
The applicable law in New Jersey indicates that homeowners are almost always on the hook for tree removal, even in the case of a neighbor’s tree falling on their property. Your neighbor, however, may be liable for a tree’s removal if it was in poor shape (was dead, leaning, or had other signs of disease or damage), and you gave your neighbor notice that you were concerned about the tree. In that case, when you can prove your neighbor knew about the tree’s compromised condition and was negligent in not having it taken care of, they will likely be responsible for damages. Most likely, their insurance won’t pay out on claims due to their negligence.
If you’re a homeowner?
As mentioned, homeowners typically pay the bill for tree removal when a healthy tree falls onto their property. In unhealthy or dead trees, the property owner where the tree grew may be liable in some cases. Properly maintaining the trees on your property and alerting your neighbors to issues you see with their trees can help prevent damage or injury for everyone.
If you’re a renter?
As a renter, you are not usually liable for tree removal costs unless your lease specifically indicates that you are. That responsibility lies typically with your landlord. Keeping an eye on the trees around your property (including on your neighbors’ lots) and alerting your landlord to any concerns is a great way to help prevent damage.
If you’re a landlord?
Landlords are generally liable for tree removal following the same patterns that apply to homeowners. Ensuring good tree care and maintenance is one way to foster good landlord-tenant relations and protect your investment from harm.
If you’re a neighbor?
Suppose your neighbor’s tree falls onto your property. In that case, you are still usually responsible for the tree’s removal unless you had previously alerted your neighbor to your concerns about the tree, and they did nothing about it.
How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Wayne?
Three of the main components of soil are silt, sand, and clay. These combine to allow the soil to hold moisture and allow excess water to drain away, retain nutrients, and create a texture and consistency suitable for root growth. The soil in the Wayne area is primarily a sandy loam. Loam is a nearly perfect soil for countless species of trees and plants, made up of equal parts sand and silt with a bit of clay mixed in. Sandy loam follows suit, with just a bit more clay to help prevent too much water drainage.
Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Wayne?
Except for rare situations, such as when Hurricane Sandy blew through, our weather is generally conducive to good, healthy tree growth, even with occasional milder hurricanes. Even the winds of a severe thunderstorm or tropical storm can bring down limbs and trees, especially for trees that disease, damage, or weak internal structure has already weakened.
What If Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Wayne?
Around Wayne Township, PSE&G is responsible for tree trimming and removal along the utility rights-of-way. PSE&G usually does this work cyclically so that they examine each area and problematic trees attended regularly. If you see a tree causing a downed line, you should report it. To help prevent problems with privately-owned trees and power lines, PSE&G suggested you follow their Right Tree, Right Place suggestions anytime you consider replacing a tree or planting a new one, so your new tree is unlikely to cause any problems in the future.
How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Wayne?
Despite the risk of negligence, many homeowners delay tree maintenance and removal, fearing the cost may be very high. If you are one of those homeowners, you may be pleased to know that most tree removals around Wayne Township average around $650 to $875, with only the largest and most complicated tree removal jobs nearing $2,000. Trees which have already fallen are substantially less expensive to remove, too. Each tree, its problems, and its location can be quite different, and prices for tree removal can vary accordingly. Some aspects of a job that most directly affect costs include:
Size & Type of Tree
Larger trees, as you probably expect, will almost always cost more to remove than smaller ones. In addition, trees with denser, harder wood, such as oak and hickory, can be more work for our arborists to remove, making for a more expensive job. Trees that require special techniques due to their trunk or limb structure may also add to your costs.
Tree Location & Equipment Needed
Trees which present few obstacles to their removal are almost always less expensive to remove. Unfortunately, we must plan most tree removals and remove them so that we minimize damage to homes, garages, swimming pools, outbuildings, patios, utility lines, landscaping, play equipment, other trees, and, of course, your neighbors’ properties. The more complicated it becomes to maneuver around these parts of the properties in question, the more expensive the job will generally be.
Permits & Other Expenses
Wayne Township requires a permit to remove trees that are 18-inches or more in diameter or when there are five or more trees with diameters between four and eight inches. You can remove up to four trees with diameters less than eight inches without a permit. Whenever permits are required, those costs will affect your total price. In addition, some jobs require that we bring in specialized equipment or a larger crew to get the work done safely, influencing pricing. Finally, many customers choose to have additional work performed along with their tree removals, such as cutting wood into log-lengths for firewood, splitting logs, chipping limbs (and providing the chips for mulch), or stump grinding. Any of these added services will typically add to the cost of tree removal.