Signs Your Tree Is Rotting On The Inside

Posted on: 20 August 2018

If you have a tree in your yard that doesn't look quite right, you may suspect that something is seriously wrong with it, even though you cannot pinpoint the exact cause. If so, look for the following signs that your tree has started rotting on the inside.

Bark Is Easily Brushed Off

One sign that your tree is rotting on the inside is how easily you can remove the bark. Usually, the bark adheres tightly to the underlying wood to protect it. However, if the wood underneath has grown soft from rot, you can remove the bark simply by applying a little pressure as you brush it off. If you are able to brush off a large patch of bark, you can then see the condition of the wood, as well as check for the next sign of tree rot.

Termites Have Taken up Residence in the Trunk

Another sign that your tree is rotting is the presence of termites under the bark. Because termites like only dead or rotting wood as a home and food source, if they have taken up residence in your tree, that is a good indicator that it is rotting.

After removing some of the bark, look for a pattern of small tunnels where the termites have burrowed into the wood. You may even see the termites crawling around, depending on how long they have been there.

If they have just started making their nest, you may also see what looks like winged ants flying around the tree. These insects are the form the termites take when they are traveling to their new home.

Presence of Fungus at the Base

Especially if the rot in your tree is advanced, another sign you should be on the lookout for is fungal growth at the base of the tree. Since the moist, dead wood serves as an ideal food source for the fungi, they will thrive as your tree's condition progresses.

As the fungi grow stronger and bury themselves deep into the tree trunk, the chemicals they secrete will speed up the rotting process. This will weaken the tree even faster, making it more likely to fall over. 

If your tree is showing the above signs of rotting, it presents a hazard to your safety and property, as it could break and fall over at any time. Contact a tree removal service, like Complete Tree Service LLC, to discuss your options for getting rid of it.