What Can Damage a Tree?

What Can Damage A Tree?

Trees are a vital part of our world. They not only add to the beauty of our environment, but they also play a key role in maintaining ecosystems across the planet. From generating oxygen to filtering out pollutants, and from offering shade to providing homes for various types of fauna, trees are vital to the earth. So we want to do our part to protect our trees from tree damage.

What Can Damage A Tree?

While trees are generally robust, that’s not to say that they are completely invulnerable; in fact, there is a wide range of threats that can damage trees. From pests to diseases, below, we’ll take a look at some of the different factors that can be detrimental to the short and long-term health of your trees.


One of the biggest threats to trees is pests. Pests can cause a wide range of damage, from the leaves to the bark, and can even weaken the structural integrity of the entire tree. Some of the most common pests that can damage trees include the following:

  • Insects: Various types of insects can take up residence in and feed on trees. Scale insects, aphids, emerald ash borer (EAB), and bark beetles are some of the most common pests that target trees, and the damage they cause can make a tree more susceptible to other issues, such as disease.
  • Fungi: Dutch Elm Disease and Oak Wilt are just two examples of fungal diseases that can seriously harm trees. The damage that fungal diseases can cause can be so widespread that entire populations of trees can be wiped out by this pest.
  • Bacteria: Trees are also prone to bacterial infections, which can cause numerous issues, such as cankers, leaf spots, and even dieback.


Like humans and animals, trees are also susceptible to different types of diseases. If they aren’t identified quickly and treated properly, diseases can do serious damage to trees, and even kill them. Some common forms of tree disease include:

  • Root rot: Armillaria mellea, a type of fungus, can cause root rot, which can weaken the foundation of a tree, and eventually, the entire structure can collapse.
  • Fire blight: A bacterial disease, fire blight tends to affect fruit trees, such as pears and apples. This disease causes the branches to wilt and blacken.
  • Anthracnose: A fungal disease, anthracnose impacts the leaves and stems of several different species of trees, which can result in loss of leaves and stunted growth.

Human And Environmental Threats To Our Trees

When it comes to maintaining the beauty and vitality of our outdoor spaces, trees stand as majestic sentinels of nature. However, trees are not immune to various threats that can cause significant damage. Let’s explore the potential dangers to trees and learn how we can protect them for generations to come.

Lawnmowers and Tree Wounds

Lawnmowers, though essential for lawn upkeep, can inadvertently harm trees if not used with caution. Running over a tree’s root system or hitting the tree trunk can cause wounds. These wounds compromise the tree’s natural defenses and create openings for pests and diseases to attack, ultimately weakening the tree’s health.

Storm Damage and Fallen Trees

Storms can wreak havoc on our surroundings, and trees often bear the brunt of their fury. Violent winds can uproot trees or break branches, causing significant storm damage. Fallen trees can block driveways, posing safety hazards and necessitating prompt debris removal and sometimes tree removal to restore accessibility and safety.

Excessive Water and Nutrients 

While water and nutrients are vital for a tree’s growth, excess or inadequate amounts can be damaging. Poor drainage can lead to waterlogged soil, suffocating the tree’s roots and causing root system damage. On the flip side, drought or lack of nutrients can lead to stunted growth and unhealthy trees.

Improper Pruning and Flush Cutting

Improper pruning, including flush cutting (cutting the branch too close to the trunk), can cause lasting harm. A local certified arborist can guide you in proper pruning techniques, ensuring the tree’s health and aesthetics. When done correctly, pruning can also help cover damage and prevent further issues.

The Cost of Removing a Tree and Insurance Considerations

Sometimes, a tree might need to be removed due to irreparable damage or safety concerns. The cost of removing a tree can vary based on size, location, and complexity. It’s essential to consult with a certified arborist and check with your insurance company to understand coverage for potential storm damage or tree removal costs.

Preserving Healthy Trees: A Duty to Nature

Caring for our trees is a responsibility that pays off in the long run. Regular tree care, including proper pruning, watering, and monitoring for signs of distress, can help maintain healthy trees that enrich our environment and provide shade, oxygen, and beauty.


Without enough water, trees will become stressed, growth will slow, leaves will scorch, and eventually, the entire structure could perish.

Final Thoughts

Though majestic, trees, like all living things, are susceptible to damage. Being mindful of potential threats like lawn mowers, storm damage, improper pruning, and ensuring adequate water and nutrients can go a long way in preserving the grandeur and health of our beloved trees. Let’s all play our part in being good stewards of nature.

To ensure that your trees remain strong and beautiful, make sure that they are properly cared for and protected from the various hazards they are prone to.

Tree Services of Omaha

Tree Services of Omaha, Nebraska is a full-service tree care provider that offers a wide range of arborist services including but not limited to: Tree Removal Services, Tree Trimming, Tree Pruning, Tree and Shrub Shaping, Stump Removal, Stump Grinding, Arborist Consultations, Systemic Tree Injections.

Contact us today for a free estimate!