Tree experts of Naples, FL share what customers can do to salvage a tree struck by lightning.
Taking Care of Storm Damaged Trees
It is amazing that something that is only a few inches wide and lasts for mere seconds can destroy a living thing that has been standing tall for decades, but this is the case when lightning strikes a tree. Thankfully, a lightning strike is not necessarily a death sentence for a tree. Depending on the circumstances, the tree may recover and live for many years to come.
Being Safe During Tree Lightning Strikes
When a storm is raging outside a home and the people inside see the flash of lightning and feel thunder shake the house, their first instinct may be to look outside to see if there has been any damage. They should not go outside. Stay away from trees during a thunderstorm. Trees are often the tallest things in an area and therefore are most likely to be hit by lightning. If you are under a tree when lightning strikes, injury or death can occur. Inspection can wait until after the storm.
When a Tree is Struck, What Happens to It?
If lightning does strike a tree, there are several possible outcomes.
- No Damage: If the bark of the tree is very wet, the lightning may flow down the outside of the tree to the ground. This is the best-case scenario for the tree.
- Partial Damage: The plasma-hot lightning strikes the tree, causing the sap to boil, splintering the bark and branch. When inspected later, at least half the tree still seems to be undamaged.
- Tree Death: After the strike, even if there is no fire or explosion, the leaves wither and die within a few days and the tree is irreparable.
Signs of Lightning Damage Sustained by the Tree
When a tree is inspected post-storm, there are times when there are no easily visible signs of damage. Despite this, there may be severe damage to the tree. Here are some signs to look for when you are checking a tree for lightning damage:
- Bark Cracked or Peeled
- Broken Branches
- Scorch Marks
- Cracks in Soil
- Split Trunk
- Wilted or Scorched Leaves
How to Proceed if Your Tree is Struck
With any sort of significant tree damage, one of the first steps is to consult a tree service company for treatment. A certified arborist should examine the tree and do a tree risk assessment. Some of the recommended steps for the struck tree may include any of the following:
- Watering: Make sure that the tree has access to sufficient water, but do not overwater.
- Fertilization: Making sure that the tree has plenty of nutrients will reduce the stress on the tree.
- Tree Trimming: Branches damaged by the lightning strike need to be removed with precision. This is a job for a tree service company.
- Protection: If the tree is near a home or building, A system can be put in place to help dissipate the electricity from a lightning strike.
- Tree Removal: If the tree is so damaged that it is already dead or cannot be saved, removal may be necessary. This should be done by professionals to eliminate the possibility of injury to homes or people.
About Any Town Tree
Locally owned and operated Any Town Tree ensures that safety comes first with any project. We offer free estimates and emergency tree service. Call us today for all types of tree service and removal in Naples, FL.