Are Metro Atlanta's Trees About to Fall?

A lot of them have sure been falling lately. Storms aren't the only reason why.


A downed tree in DeKalb's Toco Hills community last Tuesday night.

It was just the latest example of a large tree crashing down and causing havoc for people in metro Atlanta. In recent weeks, trees have crushed homes and a driver was killed when a tree fell onto his truck on I-20.

Granted, we've been seeing a lot of high winds lately that have uprooted trees. But in 2011, . Many are nearing the end of their natural life span.

Tree loss in the metro area has been attributed to a variety of reasons, including drought years, powerful storms, an increase in invasive species and pests and natural causes.

Patch wants to know: Do you worry about the big, old trees on your property or on your neighbor's side of the property line? Have you taken any steps to protect your home and family? Or do you think the danger is overblown?

See Also:

Tree Crashes Into Virginia Highland Home

Tree Topples Down Center of Sandy Springs Home

Fallen Tree Across Cascade Road; Downed Power Lines


Cheryl Huvard March 08, 2013 at 06:34 PM
Apparently, only certain individuals and entities have to do so because Atlanta Gas Company bought a parcel of land behind my condo and immediately cut down nearly four acres of old growth woods with no permit and without notifying anyone. Atlanta Gas Company operates with complete impunity with no regard for the rights of ordinary citizens, so it is not surprising that DeKalb County and its elected officials not only were not notified, but were not provided with information when it was requested.
Eileeen Vajilik March 08, 2013 at 08:03 PM
rent if you can't afford a home and all that entails
Eileeen Vajilik March 08, 2013 at 08:03 PM
can't Obama Santa make this free too?
Bill Lowe March 08, 2013 at 08:59 PM
Trees have a limited lifespan, and they are going to come down at some point either by natural force or by man--either as a precaution because it is known that the tree is dying/dead, or because of construction. We should see more aging trees fall as those that were planted right after the civil war are reaching their end of life. Should be every 25 years a tree planting spree of long life hard woods to replace those majestic oaks....Speaking of majestic Oaks....consider the following: There is unrest in the forest, There is trouble with the trees, For the maples want more sunlight And the oaks ignore their pleas. The trouble with the maples, (And they're quite convinced the're right) They say the oaks are just too lofty And they grab up all the light. But the oaks can't help their feelings If they like the way they're made. And they wonder why the maples Can't be happy in their shade. There is trouble in the Forest, And the Creatures all have fled, As the Maples scream oppression, And the Oaks just shake their heads. So the maples formed a union And demanded equal rights. "These oaks are just too greedy; We will make them give us light." Now there's no more oak oppression, For they passed a noble law, And the trees are all kept equal By hatchet, axe, and saw.
J. H. March 08, 2013 at 11:13 PM
Hello, I don't have 6000 dollars.
J. H. March 08, 2013 at 11:16 PM
Those costs are why you have homeowners insurance. Again I state my trees do not pose a threat to my neighbors. Can you READ?
J. H. March 08, 2013 at 11:56 PM
Catrina, be gone before someone drops a tree on you................
jMichael March 09, 2013 at 12:01 AM
Rush. Amazing! Thanks.
Catrina March 09, 2013 at 12:45 AM
J. H., hopng you do better as a responsible property owner - which includes taking care of the trees on your property - than you do at movie quotes. Glinda's line is actually a house, not a tree.
J. H. March 09, 2013 at 12:52 AM
Duh! Shocked you got the pun. Please don't try to recite The Wizard of Oz to a Gay man. !
Virginia Lester March 09, 2013 at 01:15 AM
Just a point....we had a huge, beloved white oak on our property that began to show signs of stress. Two arborists from different companies came out to look at it.....both from "reputable" companies. One said it could be saved by spending hundreds on vitamins and injections. The other said it was gone and they could take it down for 6K! I then called the city arborist in Decatur out b/c he had no interest in selling chemicals or in taking down a tree and he told us it was diseased and would begin to be dangerous in a matter of months. Arborists aren't all created equal. We paid $1,500 to take down that specimen oak and the one behind it w/ the same disease! My advice is to get some competitive bids when you're ready to take down a tree. We found someone to trim our trees who doesn't use spikes to climb and does it himself, eliminating the middle man! Losing those two oak trees was a great loss to us and at the time, impacted our property in a negative way but now the other oaks have flourished b/c they're not competing for nutrients, water, etc. and the topography is looking a lot better.
jimmie March 10, 2013 at 12:28 AM
Trees aren't the only thing that will come raining down on us if we keep pushing god out of our lives. It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of an angry god!
Roger That March 11, 2013 at 09:13 AM
Sounds like you have much experience with god being angry with you, jimmie. Did he whiz all over your trees or just send you a few friendly locust?
Roger That March 11, 2013 at 09:19 AM
Large trees can survive crowning and severe pruning (up to 1/3-1/2). You don't have to cut them down. Crowning and pruning can extend a mature hardwood's life 10-20 years. If you have mature pines (over 15 years old), however, they should probably be removed. I have not seen one taken down that was not infested with pine bark beetles. There are county "mandates" on diameters (minimums) for removal of trees, but, who in their right mind is going to listen to DeKalb County?
jimmie March 11, 2013 at 12:11 PM
I just read the Bible Roger...and pray for the misguided
Roger That March 13, 2013 at 06:39 AM
I hereby pray for the misguided. Especially jimmie.
jimmie March 13, 2013 at 10:17 AM
God knows the heart Roger...and that should scare you!
Earl Williamson, RN March 13, 2013 at 11:23 AM
Roger That - Please provide a reference supporting severe pruning and crowning in mature hardwoods. In much work with certified arborists I have never heard such and the only result of such I've ever seen from those practices is the accelerated loss of old growth hardwoods. The only ones I have ever seen promote those practices are fly by night tree services pitching unneccesary work at inflated rates.
Roger That March 13, 2013 at 04:24 PM
God does not scare me, jimmie, but YOU DO!
Roger That March 13, 2013 at 04:38 PM
No "certified" arborist is going to tell you this because they risk stepping outside what is considered "standard practices." If the tree dies, they could be held culpable, lose their license, etc. I'm sure you can relate. ANY pruning risks disease which is unpredictable. Standard practices were invented to protect the license, not the tree. If you are in the neighborhood (Brookhaven), there is an excellent example of "gross neglect" pruning at the corner of Candler Lake E NE and W. Nancy Creek. The property owners have been hacking the death out of their tree (oh, you will see it) for 10+ years. Point being, it isn't diseased or dying. I have mature hardwoods (white, red, water oaks) that I have hacked to death using "fly by night" tree service. My trees are fine. If you have a tree that you want to keep, but prefer it to be half the size it is now (this all depends on exactly how high the canopy is), you can reduce it's size with a series of cuttings over several years. : )
Earl Williamson, RN March 14, 2013 at 09:54 AM
Please provide a scientific reference supporting severe pruning and crowning in mature hardwoods. I have had NO degreed arborist support either practice. Your hacking your own trees to death is not evidence for science based practice nor do you mention actually having had your trees evaluated by a certified arborist. You really haven't a clue as to the REAL health of your trees.
Roger That March 14, 2013 at 11:05 AM
I was a certified arborist for 12 years and am a retired forester. Go kill some patients. You bore me with your know it all attitude and deserve to pay for what you get.
Chris Anderson April 19, 2013 at 11:47 PM
Seriously pure raw meat? Where did you read that? if you have any questions about trees, get multiple certified arborist to evaluate your tree.
Rob April 20, 2013 at 12:11 AM
Wow...47 personalities and 47 professions...and to think people worry about the NRA!
Roger That April 20, 2013 at 04:26 PM
Most "certified" tree cutters have never worked in forestry, private ski resorts, or power companies where there are exceptions to general (non-commercial) tree care. They are usually licensed by the state and restricted to restricted approved methods of cutting/pruning by ordinance (law). Therefore, they can't legally make the above recommendations, and would have no experience in the practices/results.
Roger That April 20, 2013 at 04:33 PM
Education didn't have to stop at grad school, Rob. Or, did you just give up after high school? Education shouldn't be limited to a single field, just in case you didn't know, Rob, because machines and migrants have ways of eliminating the viability of certain professions.
Roger That April 20, 2013 at 05:01 PM
WARNING! Graphic content of tree abuse that no "certified" tree swinger would approve!!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QRM8qxW9cjE
Eddie E. April 20, 2013 at 05:13 PM
Is the intent of this 'article' to tamp down opposition to the 'bare earth' policies in place in the Brookhaven Overlay?
Ralph April 20, 2013 at 06:47 PM
The pwer cmpanies and state highway departments sure practice severe pruning. Dn'r see any of the trees they butcher dying.
Roger That May 04, 2013 at 07:10 PM
Most people won't accept a professional opinion unless they pay for it.


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