Do your trees have mushrooms on or near them?
Mushrooms primary purpose are to decompose matter that is dying or already dead. They break down matter into what is essentially highly nutritious soil. However, if you see mushrooms on or near your tree, mother nature is sending you a warning and you need to look a little closer at your tree. These fungal pathogens usually come from wounds left by weed-eaters, mowers, improper pruning, construction, wildlife, or other means of tree damage. The infection can be embodied numerous years before a mushroom fruit appears and they can appear anywhere throughout the tree, whether it is on the base of the trunk, the roots, or even the limbs. As long as the fungal infection is in the tree, it will slowly deteriorate the tissues inside, weakening the tree. Once the tree looses its structural integrity, limbs will begin to drop and the tree could potentially fall over with a hard wind, or even a light wind following a days of rain. This is danger to anyone or anything that is in its area.
Can my tree be saved?
With each tree being different, there is no simple answer. It is best to call an ISA Certified Arborist and let them evaluate the problem. If the infection is caught early on, it is possible to save your tree. For instance, if a mushroom is found on a limb you can prune the limb. Make sure when this is done there is a collar left and not a flush cut, so you won’t be enabling pathogens to attack the wound. With the correct pruning, application of amendments, and injections to slow down the infection and allow the tree to focus on recovering you may be able to revive it. Unfortunately, if there is predominant decay throughout your tree, it could mean your tree is too hazardous to be left sitting and needs to be removed. If you notice mushrooms near your tree, we recommend calling an ISA Certified Arborist to help diagnose the problem and create a plan.