Contents (Click To Jump)
- 1 What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Philadelphia?
- 2 Does the City of Philadelphia Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
- 3 Who Is Responsible For Fallen Tree Removal in Philadelphia?
- 4 How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Philadelphia?
- 5 Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Philadelphia?
- 6 What if Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Philadelphia?
- 7 How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Philadelphia?
What Are the Most Common Tree Issues in Philadelphia?
Philadelphia’s trees are susceptible to many diseases and infestations that can cause early death without proper intervention. Here are a few of the most common issues they face:
Emerald Ash Borer
These tiny beetles lay their eggs under the bark of ash trees, and when the larvae hatch, they feed on the tree’s vulnerable tissue. It’s difficult to see these bugs, but they can do significant damage to a tree rather quickly and can kill a tree within three to five years. If your tree looks like it’s sick or unhealthy, call our local arborists to assess the cause. If these beetles are the cause, we can treat your tree to grow strong and healthy.
When gypsy moths lay eggs onto tree leaves, the larvae hatch and feed off the leaves, causing tree branches to become bare and weak. Untreated trees can get sick and die, and these moths can quickly spread to other trees nearby. If you notice caterpillars on your tree’s leaves or if your tree suddenly has very few leaves, call our arborists for a check-up. Early intervention can save your tree’s life.
Beech Bark Disease
Beech bark disease occurs when beech scale insects infest and cause severe damage to the bark of beech trees. If you notice bark damage on your beech trees, have our arborists check them out immediately. If treated early, we can save your beech trees. Otherwise, they will likely succumb to the disease, and you will need to remove them.
This fatal disease affects red oak trees across the country and spreads very quickly. The first symptoms include wilting of the branches and leaf loss at the top of the tree. Once infected, a tree can die within a few weeks. If you notice oak wilt, call our specialists quickly to assess the problem. Sometimes we can save your trees from the disease.
Does the City of Philadelphia Provide Any Assistance in Tree Removal Problems?
Philadelphia owns the street trees in front of your home, and the Urban Forestry Street Tree Management unit manages most of the care they need. If you notice a problem with your street trees, you can submit a service request by calling 311. You can also call the Parks & Recreation’s Street Tree Management division at (215) 685-4363. They will handle everything from pruning street trees around signs and streetlights and performing hazardous tree inspections if you suspect they need to remove one. They will also plant new street trees as needed.
If your street tree is dead or the City needs to remove it, fill out a tree removal form with the City. They will send someone out to inspect the tree, and if they need to remove it, they’ll take care of the job at no cost to you.
Yard trees, on the other hand, are the responsibility of the homeowner. These include any trees within your property lines that do not line the street. If one of your yard trees becomes diseased or dies, it is your responsibility to call us for tree removal.
Who Is Responsible For Fallen Tree Removal in Philadelphia?
When a tree falls on your property, it’s essential to know where the responsibility lies for removal. Let’s take a look at a few common scenarios so you’re prepared if a tree should fall.
If You’re a Homeowner?
As a homeowner, you own all the trees within your property lines. It is your job to prune and care for your trees regularly. If one should fall during a storm or other unforeseen event, your homeowner’s insurance will cover the cost. You will only be responsible for paying the deductible.
If You’re a Renter?
Renters do not own the property or anything on it, so the responsibility does not fall on your shoulders if a tree falls. Your landlord’s insurance will pay for the tree removal fees.
If You’re a Landlord?
As a landlord, you are responsible for maintaining the trees on all of your rental properties. That includes pruning away dead branches and looking after the general health of your trees. If one should fall, your insurance will cover the removal fees. You will only need to pay the deductible.
If You’re a Neighbor?
When a tree falls across property lines, things can get muddy. Fortunately, The Pennsylvania rule makes things pretty clear. If a tree falls onto your property — even if it belongs to your neighbor — your insurance will cover the damage. The same goes for your neighbor. If one of your healthy trees falls onto their property during a storm or other unforeseen circumstance, his insurance will take care of the clean-up fees.
How Does the Soil Affect Trees in Philadelphia?
Sandy loam makes up Philadelphia’s soil. It is generally very compact and doesn’t contain a lot of water, but trees thrive in the City’s soil as long as you make proper amendments. Pollution contaminates the ground in many areas, which is no surprise since Philadelphia recently ranked as the country’s 17th most polluted city. Have our experts test your soil if you’d like to know what it needs precisely, but here are a few tried and true methods that work in Philadelphia:
Mix in Some Compost
Compost is a combination of decomposing leaves, food scraps, and other organic materials that are nutrient-rich and make for fertile soil. Adding compost to your soil will help it retain moisture and will reduce any contaminants that may have been present. Your tree will also appreciate the many nutrients that compost provides. You can stop by the Fairmount Recycling Center during business hours, and they give residents up to 30 gallons of compost for free.
Add a Layer of Mulch
Mulch adds a layer of protection to an urban tree’s base, much like what you’d find on a forest’s floor. This layer locks in moisture and protects your tree’s roots from the constantly changing temperatures in Philadelphia. And as the mulch breaks down, it acts like compost and adds nutrients to the soil near your tree’s root system.
Does Weather Affect Tree Health in Philadelphia?
The City of Philadelphia experiences all four seasons, and the trees have learned to adapt to each one. Each season brings its threats to our City’s trees, and as homeowners, there are several things you can do to prevent damage.
Unhealthy and diseased trees are at the most risk in winter. When temperatures drop, snow and ice can accumulate on branches, weighing them down and posing a hazard to your home and the people who live there.
When a tree goes down in the winter, it was most likely very sick or already dead. Do your part to protect your trees, so they’re ready to withstand the winter. Here are a few things you can do ahead of time to prevent trees or branches from falling in the cold months:
- Prune away dead branches in the tree’s dormant season.
- Regularly check your trees for signs of disease or infestation.
- Have our arborists diagnose and treat any issues before winter hits.
- If a tree is a fall risk and you need to remove it, call us to get the job done quickly.
What if Dead Trees Are Near Power Lines in Philadelphia?
The Philadelphia Electric Company, or PECO for short, prunes trees that interfere with right-of-way power lines. These lines are between power poles, and any trees near them should be pruned by a professional. PECO maintains these trees on a five-year cycle, but if your tree is fast-growing or you notice that branches interfere with the lines, you can submit a Service Request, and they’ll check it out. If a tree becomes dead or is dying, PECO will take care of the tree’s removal at no cost to you.
PECO does not trim branches that are near your service wire. This wire is the one that goes from a pole directly to your house. If you need to prune a tree, you can hire our experts to help. We will contact PECO first so they can shut off the power before we begin.
How Much Does Tree Removal Usually Cost in Philadelphia?
Tree removal in Philadelphia costs anywhere from $700 to $2,000. If you need to have a tree removed in Philadelphia, call us for a free quote. We’ll ask you several questions to determine your final cost. Some of those questions include:
How Big Is Your Tree?
When quoting a price for tree removal in Philadelphia, we factor in the tree’s height and its trunk’s diameter. Larger trees take more resources, equipment, and time, so they will cost more to remove. If your tree is short and the trunk is narrow, it will likely cost much less to remove.
What’s Around Your Tree?
If there are obstacles around your tree, including power lines or buildings, we will factor this into your final price. We take great care in keeping your home and electrical lines (and our arborists) safe during the tree removal process, which often complicates the job. Rest assured that we will remove your tree safely, and the tree will not damage any surrounding objects in the process, but you’ll probably pay a little more for the hard work.
Where Is Your Tree?
Trees that are difficult to access make the job more complex. We’ll have to figure out how to get all of our equipment to the worksite, which will take extra time and resources. Expect to pay a little more if your tree is hard to reach.