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Living Smart: Tree Care

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By Angie Hicks

tree_pruning(MCT)—The green that trees provide goes beyond the beauty of their foliage. Part of your home’s market value is rooted in the quality and quantity of healthy trees on your property.

That’s why it’s so important to take good care of your trees. After all, they grow very slowly, so it’s not easy — or cheap — to replace them.

Our research team, after interviewing arborists and other tree experts who are highly rated by members of Angie’s List, recommends these tips for keeping trees in good shape for as long as possible:

• Get an expert evaluation. Start by having your trees pruned and evaluated regularly for signs of dead wood, insect damage and other problems.

• Remove dead or problem branches. One important part of tree maintenance is periodic crown cleaning, which is the removal of dead wood. In addition to looking unsightly, dead wood can cause a tree to not produce enough sugar, can make it more attractive to insects and can lead to structural damage when limbs fall.

• Another process, known as crown thinning, is the removal of selected branches from the tree’s crown to allow more light to pass through and decrease wind resistance, which will help the tree weather storms.

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