No trees are immune to storm damage, and winter storms can be especially severe. Whether it’s heavy snow or ice storms, the trees on your property have to contend with some pretty rough conditions over the winter season.

If you’re concerned that your valuable trees may be at risk, it’s a good idea to have them evaluated to determine what, if any, preventative measures should be taken. Protective steps may include:

Preventative Pruning: Previously damaged or weak limbs, and branches with too little space between them, can be selectively pruned to minimize the risk of tree failure under heavy snow loads.

Cabling: This reinforces weak limbs and V-shaped forks. Heavy bolts in one or more locations on limbs, with cables running between the limbs, add strength to the tree to help it avoid sudden breakage.

Bracing: This is used to give direct support and reduce twisting strain on a tree. A metal rod is inserted where the trunk splits into two or more limbs, and cables are placed above it.

All too often, the trees most damaged during winter storms are the focal point of a property. If you’ve never considered storm protection for your trees, you may want to think again. It will probably cost more to repair or replace storm-damaged trees than it would to take preventative measures right now.