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California is now years into our drought and research indicates that it is causing risk to tens of millions of our trees. Our forests here are vital components to our ecological health on this planet. As humans, we tend to regard trees as large and indestructible, but in times of drought, our water starved giants can fall into ill health and create stress induced problems. Our governor has called it “the worst epidemic of tree mortality” in our state’s modern history and has ordered agencies and Palo Alto tree services to remove dead or dying trees from high hazard areas.

These dead trees are far more susceptible to fire than green, healthy trees. Considering our fire seasons are more extensive due to continued warming, scientists have predicted increasing probability of fire damage. Drought riddled trees are also more prone to insect infestation than healthy trees, furthering the possibility of more forest vulnerability to fire.

Depending on what type of trees you may have on your property, you may notice symptoms of drought stress. Usually, the first place they become apparent is the leaves or needles.

According to Palo Alto tree service professionals, on deciduous trees, the first thing you may see will be browning, yellowing, or curling around the outside edges of the leaves or between the veins. You may notice leaf scorch where a tree almost resembles one that has been burned. This can also be indicative of a bacterial infection that can further deteriorate the health of the tree. Needles on an evergreen may appear to change in color from the normal, healthy green to red, purple, or yellow or become increasingly brown.

If left unchecked, these symptoms could further the possibility of secondary problems. Drought renders the tree weakened. When a tree is struggling for survival, this can create an environment rife with other problems. Insect infestations are more probable with a tree that no longer has its natural defenses available. Disease and decay are also more probable. A tree under drought stress can very easily become overwhelmed by these secondary issues.

If you are noticing that your trees are exhibiting signs of drought stress, call your Palo Alto tree service in order to address the problem. With proper care, your trees can be diagnosed and treated through this time of drought. The experts at Bay Area Tree Specialist have been helping Palo Alto homeowners with arborist and tree services throughout the years. Call us and we would be happy to answer any of your questions about drought stress and how you can help your trees survive this difficult time.