How Construction Projects Can Negatively Impact Trees

How Construction Projects Can Negatively Impact Trees

Throughout Houston, construction projects of all shapes and sizes are currently underway, whether it’s new construction, renovations, or even demolition of existing structures. Many of these constructions projects include keeping existing large trees on the property to enhance shade and beauty. Builders and construction project managers have to account for electrical, utility, traffic and building safety needs, but often neglect to properly protect the mature trees on the property. Construction projects can negatively impact trees in a variety of ways, leaving property owners with severely damaged or even dead trees.

Trees Are Defenseless Against Construction Vehicles

Construction projects, big or small, require the use of service vehicles or heavy equipment, such as concrete trucks, utility service vehicles, bulldozers or debris containers. While in operation, these vehicles can easily cause damage to tree trunks, tree limbs and tree roots. Major wounds in the tree trunk can lead to invasive tree diseases or insects, which can weaken the tree and even lead to tree death. Trees can also become damaged when major limbs are broken, leading to uneven tree growth and instability.

Soil Compaction Impairs Tree Growth

Soil compaction is a common problem for trees near construction sites. Even when vehicles operators and construction workers use caution near trees, the soil near trees can become compacted due to the constant traffic. Soil compaction is devastating for trees because the tree becomes unable to absorb water, minerals and other essential nutrients from the soil. Water is unable to reach tree roots, and the tree becomes dehydrated and weak, often leading to tree damage or tree death

Did Anyone Remember To Water The Tree?

Even when proactive steps are taken to protect trees from physical damage or soil compaction, trees can still suffer because they are often not watered during the construction project. Existing irrigation systems are often turned off during construction, and our lower rainfall levels do not provide adequate hydration either. Without consistent watering, trees can quickly fall into poor health, resulting in leaf dieback and dead branches. Trees exhibiting these symptoms after a period of construction are usually not able to recover, resulting in complete tree loss.

Trees are a valuable and beautiful property asset, so construction project managers and property owners need to ensure that proper steps are taken to protect and preserve the life of existing shade trees. LMC offers Houston-area property owners outstanding Tree Preservation Services to protect trees before, during and immediately after construction projects. LMC’s Certified Arborists protect the perimeter of the tree, as well as tree roots and tree canopy through strong construction barriers and ample safety signage. The LMC team will also perform regular soil aeration to improve soil health and prevent harmful soil compaction.  LMC will also ensure that trees are properly pruned and watered for the duration of the project, protecting their health, value and beauty.

Tree Preservation Services provide tremendous financial savings for property owners as they avoid the cost of tree removal and tree replacement due to construction damage. In addition, they enjoy long-term shade and lower energy costs because of the healthy and mature shade trees. Before your next construction project, contact the tree health experts at LMC, or go online to request a free consultation!

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