Not all firewood creates the same results, even if it’s correctly seasoned. You might want wood that burns efficiently while not giving off extreme heat, wood that gives the most heat per log, or wood that crackles nicely. The secret to choosing the best firewood for your fireplace is in understanding the different wood types and what their qualities are.
Too much wetness in firewood of any kind reduces burning effectiveness. The smoke that comes off of unseasoned/green wood is energy that’s rising the chimney instead of being transformed into heat for your house. Not only is wood smoke a sign of unproductive fuel, but it’s also unhealthful.
The smoke has little particles that are breathed in and can escape natural defense mechanisms in the body. Also, smoke creates a hazardous situation with your chimney, since too much smoke is the leading cause of the accumulation of creosote which creates chimney fires.
A Crackling Fire
If you like a fire that has lots of crackles, take a look at fir. It’s softwood that dry out swiftly, splits correctly, and produces fantastic flames. Best of all, fir fires have a fresh aroma that helps make the perfect holiday ambiance. Be sure you have a good protective screen or glass doors since the popping and crackling put out more sparks than other firewood types.
A Hot Fire
Trees are either softwoods or hardwoods. Hardwood has the highest BTU content, meaning it produces a lot of heat. Hardwoods are dense. A pile of hardwood weighs way more than the same collection of softwood and delivers twice the heat.
Hardwood logs blaze slowly and are best for cooking and producing hot, intense fires. Though, it’s much harder to get a fire going with hardwood. It’s best to use softwood to get your fire going and then add the hardwood.
Some hardwoods that are excellent for burning since they are easy to burn, offer high heat and create minimal smoke are:
Whatever sort of firewood you burn, it’s critical to get your chimney examined yearly. Call a certified tree care professional if you're interested in having some trees cut down for firewood.
The woolly bear caterpillar (aka fuzzy and woolly worm) has the reputation of being capable of forecasting the upcoming winter weather. Regardless if this is folklore or fact, learn some insight into the woolly bear caterpillar and how to interpret the worm.
Here’s the tale: The Woolly Bear caterpillar has 13 separate segments of either black or rusty brown. The bigger the rusty brown sections (or, the browner the parts are), the milder the upcoming winter will be. The blacker it is, the harsher the winter.
A woolly bear caterpillar is a form of the tiger moth (Isabella).
This mid-size moth, with yellow-orange and cream-colored wings dotted with black, is familiar from northern Mexico throughout the US and across the southern part of Canada. As moths are concerned, the woolly bear caterpillar isn’t great to look at matched with other types, but its young larva, known as the black-ended and woolly bear is one of the few caterpillars most folks can identify. Woolly bears don’t feel much like wool. They are covered with stiff, short bristles of hair.
Do they forecast the winter?
Between 1948 and 1956, a medical professional, Dr. Curran, counted an average brown-segment ranged between 5.3 to 5.6 from the 13-segment total, signifying that the brown band took up over a third of the woolly bear’s body. The following winters were milder than usual, and Dr. Curran decided that the folklore might be real.
But Curran was under no scientific illusion. He understood that his data samples were minute. Although the tests legitimized folklore to some, they were just a reason to have fun.
Thirty years after Curran’s experiment, the woolly bear brown-segment tally and winter forecasts were revived thanks to the nature museum at Bear Mountain State Park. The annual counts have continued, often by word of mouth.
If the rusty band is full, then it will be a mild winter. The blacker there is, the harsher the winter. If you find any other insect in your tree, ask a knowledgeable tree specialist to check it out for you.
If you see peeling tree bark, you may be wondering why your bark is shedding. While this isn’t always a cause for panic, learning more about trees that naturally lose their bark can help bring some light on this problem so you’ll know what, if anything, should be done for it.
When the bark is shedding off a tree, decide if the tree is performing an ordinary shedding process or if disease or injury is the reason for the issue. If the old bark sheds and the new bark is over the wood afterward, this is its natural shedding.
If you see fungus or bare wood under the peeling bark, the tree is enduring from disease or environmental damage.
Trees with peeling bark
A tree with peeling bark isn’t automatically an issue. As a tree flourish, bark layers thicken, and the dead, old bark falls off. It may fall away slowly so that you barely notice it, but some sorts of trees have a more interesting shedding process that may be disturbing until you realize that it is entirely reasonable. Several trees are prone to peeling and provide distinctive interest, particularly in winter.
Trees that generally shed bark in huge chunks: Silver maple/ Scotch pine/Birch/ Sycamore/ Redbud/ Shagbark hickory.
Environmental Causes Behind Tree with Peeling Bark
Peeling tree bark is sometimes because of the environment. If peeling bark on trees is only on the southwest or south side of the tree and bare wood is visible, the issue could be frost damage or sunscald. This type of shedding disturbs the lifespan and health of the tree, and more prominent areas of exposed wood make it more expectantly that the tree will perish.
Horticulturalists disagree about whether painting with white reflective paint or wrapping the trees aids in eliminating sunscald. If you cover the trunk of the tree over winter, be sure to remove the wrapping before spring so that it doesn’t offer shelter for insects. Trees with breaks in the bark can live for a long time if the damaged space is narrow. Call an arborist if the tree is leaning or appears damaged.
Bark is essential for tree health, encasing a tree’s branches and trunk like a protective skin. Tree bark stores water and also work to protect the tree’s vital living systems from situational and environmental hazards like storms, insects, diseases, temperature extremes, storms, and attacks by animals.
Some trees even have grown extra thick bark which can shield them from the results of brush fires. Bark also helps trees deliver nutrients and water. They can’t live without it.
A tree’s inner layer of bark, the phloem, carries sugars made during photosynthesis in the leaves to the other tree parts. Phloem varies from tree to tree.
The phloem on the inner side of the bark is divided from the outer living layer of the wood by a layer called cambium. It transfers water and dissolved nutrients from the roots of the tree to the leaves and makes a new layer of wood each year. This layer creates new xylem and phloem cells to replenish the ones that die.
The outer bark (epidermis) safeguards all the inner layers of tree bark from damages. The outer tree bark is renewed continuously from within. When living phloem cells get worn, they convert to being a part of the dead outer bark. As trees flourish, the thickness of the trunk expands which causes the unique cracks visible in most tree types.
The outer bark is nasty and indigestible which means that this part of tree bark has grown to dissuade animals and insects from eating it. However, some critters come to know that the inner tree bark is nutritious and sweet, finding a way to get past the outer bark.
Get In Touch with a Syracuse Tree Service Company
A Syracuse tree service company provides you with the necessary help in keeping any tree you plant strong and healthy for years to come. Call one and inquire about tree treatment programs and tree maintenance service.
Any service you need, a tree specialist is the one to help! From storm tree removal to fertilization plans, they will help you with any issue that has taken root.
As winter arrives, the soil is gradually freezing around the roots of your trees. How do trees handle the cold of winter? Do the frosty temps harm them?
Roots can be harmed by cold temperatures. Certified arborists have concluded that roots are more likely to be damaged by cold temperatures than the above ground parts of a tree. But the soil doesn't get so cold, and its temperature doesn't vary as much as the air. Cold harms trees by turning water to ice in the cells, creating crystals that can harm them.
Cold Weather Climates and Trees
Trees in cold winter climates have evolved to endure winter by being dormant. This means not just dropping leaves and stopping or slowing growth, but also lessening the amount of water in root tissues and branches. The reduced concentration of water in a plant's tissue works as a natural antifreeze. It takes deep cold to create ice inside them.
The water in the soil near the roots could freeze. However, the cold won't damage the roots until the water inside their tissues begins to freeze.
Sometimes that can occur, particularly in a long spell of harsh weather when cold has lots of time to penetrate from the air low into the soil. Frozen at 30 degrees isn’t the same as frozen at 0 degrees. Some trees begin displaying damage when the soil temps fall to around 20 degrees. Some tree species are more sensitive than others.
The temperature of the soil is not continual. There's always warmth in the earth. The ground could be freezing from the surface, but it's continually thawing from below. During winter, trees are adapting continuously to the changes. The main danger to trees is an abrupt deep freeze. As long as they have time to adjust, they're okay. It's when change happens unexpectedly that it can bring trouble.
This is the main reason to keep a layer of mulch over the roots of your trees. Mulch protects the soil, maintaining the warmth when the air temp plummets. If you need mulch or wood chips, ask a tree care company to supply you with some.
The winter temps are going up and down take their toll on trees. Even for tree types use to cold areas, this is a harrowing time. And this is mainly true for the isolated and exposed trees of the Syracuse homes. Some of this stress is inevitable. Tree owners have no control over the temperature and weather. Though, there are things that you can do to keep your trees healthy through winter.
Cold stresses take many forms. The first is the influence on older trees of a swift change between daytime heat and nighttime freezing and daytime heat. These temps changes can bring on stresses in the tree between the interior wood and outer bark, causing cracks called frost cracking.
What to do
There is very little that can be done to stop frost cracking. In many instances, the tree is capable of repairing itself even though the cracked area stays vulnerable and ensuing cracking at the same place can bring on significant damage. With young trees and tropical trees, the tree owner could wrap the bark. To further stop winter damage and diminish moisture loss, contacting a Syracuse arborist can be very beneficial.
Another cold stress is the effect of unexpected early frosts on late growth. Tree growth in the late season is susceptible since it doesn’t have the same time as established growth to get ready for the cold.
What to do
To avoid this, you shouldn’t prune until after the tree has begun dormancy in the fall. Pruning too soon might urge new growth and raise the risk of frost damage. Also, don’t use fertilizers with large amounts of nitrogen. Trees can benefit from correct fall fertilization. However, you should know what to avoid.
At some points in the wintertime, particularly with evergreens, drying out can be a serious issue. Winter drought happens when a tree loses more water than it can take in from the frozen ground. This is particularly accurate during the early spring when the ground stays frozen while the spring sun starts warming every part of the tree.
What to do
While there is no spot-on solution to winter drought, you can control the issue by putting down a layer of mulch around the tree’s base before winter. The mulch helps to decelerate moisture loss while working as a temp buffer for the roots.
Although we have snow and cold outside, winter is the best time of year to schedule winter tree pruning. Wait for a mild, sunny day, grab your pruners, and take a good look at your trees.
Winter Pruning Advice
Have a well-defined purpose in mind when you prune a tree. Think about what you want to do to the tree you're pruning. Most deciduous pruning tasks must promote a natural style, meaning that tall trees are not topped or cut to make them shorter, the natural outline of a tree is maintained, and low-limb trees aren’t being trimmed too harshly.
The goal is to highlight the tree's natural features. If you do it well, it looks like you didn't do anything at all.
Remove undesirable branches. Remove all diseased or dead wood. It doesn’t matter where it is located on the plant. Then, remove all water sprouts and suckers.
Remove rubbing or crossing branches. Begin with the biggest limbs and move steadily to the littlest. There may be instances when you break this rule. For instance, leave a large crossing limb that would destroy your tree if removed.
Thin out the canopy. Beginning in the middle and traveling to the outside, thin the limbs that make up the dense mass of a tree. Your aim is to improve air circulation in the tree limbs and to put emphasis on the structure of the tree. Never remove over one-quarter of a tree in a season since that encourages sucker growth.
Work steadily, taking lots of breaks to take a step back and look. Is the tree even? Know when to end. You don't want to hollow out the middle. You can go back and take more off.
Prune back to a branch. Never leave an open end that comes from topping a tree. Open ends can make dense horizontal growth that wrecks the natural branching pattern, or they can cause disease and death.
Look for insect problems. The eggs of gypsy moths, tussock moths, and tent caterpillars are frequently visible on tree branches in winter. Remove them by hand or prune to control insect damage in the spring. If you need assistance, hire a tree contractor.
Older trees are just like older human beings. Those that have positively overcome challenges and get to maturity enjoy some unique advantages that come with being very grown up. Both also need some extra attention and love to stay healthy and enjoy an honorable old age.
When it comes to longevity, trees have an edge over humans. Some, usually hardwood types like beech, oak, and maple, live up to 300 years. They are a gift from our ancestors to our children and coming generations. A healthy tree rises in value as it gets old. Our Syracuse community enjoys the bonuses, such as enhanced air quality, improved property values, modern temps, energy savings, wildlife habitat, moderate temps, and stormwater control.
We are still discovering all the ways our older trees protect us.
As the foundation of our community, our older trees warrant our care and respect as they pass their prime. Having grown as wide and tall as their species says, these mature trees unavoidably start to deteriorate.
It has been stated that trees, like humans, have a middle age spread. As they mature, tree growth dwindles since they can’t store energy. They make fewer leaves, so they aren’t as effective at photosynthesis. They are less accepting of stress, either man-made stress such as compacted soil, pesticide use, and mower damage or environmental stress like insects, disease, or drought.
If you are wondering how to care for older trees, regular preventative maintenance will guarantee that they live a happy, long life with dignity.
Mature Tree Tips
Routine Inspection: We don’t think twice about the importance of yearly checkups for our families and ourselves. Likewise, routine checkups for your trees by a Syracuse arborist every year or two is crucial, the arborist will recommend pruning when it's needed to keep the tree healthy. They encourage positive tree health by detecting minor issues before they get serious. Arborists are trained to look for illnesses such as discolored leaves, rotting bark, or reduced growth. If you sense any of these things on your trees, don’t wait for a checkup! Call an arborist ASAP.
Correct Mulching: A layer of mulch offers numerous benefits, particularly to mature and young trees. Mulch aids trees to retard soil erosion, discourage weeds, stop soil compaction, and retain moisture.
Modifying the height of your mower is typically a straightforward procedure. Contemporary lawn mowers are easy enough that you can see at a glance precisely how to make the changes. Though, some are not so easy. Sometimes it isn’t a matter of complexity, but knowing what height is correct for your yard.
For setting your mower at the correct height, adhere to these recommendations.
Step 1 – Owner’s Manual
It doesn’t matter what mower type you have, the first thing you must do is look and see what the owner’s manual says about setting the height of your mower. Even on the basis of designs, adjustments vary from brand to brand. Also if the right way to adjust it seems obvious, there might be something you’re missing, and you won’t realize it until you’ve taken a look at the manual.
Step 2 – Set it on Flat Surface
To indeed see how low or high your mower is, put it on a flat surface like a patio or driveway before doing any adjustments. Also, if you're working with tools, like a wrench, you’ll be less likely to lose it on the concrete than in your lawn.
Step 3 – Gauge
When you don’t know how high your mower should be, always begin at the top and work your way down. Though, to get a more accurate cut without the trial and error, you can roughly gauge how tall is your grass. Next, measure from the side your mower is on up to the fan blades.
Step 4 – Making Changes
Consistently make sure that your mower has little chance of coming on before you make changes. For most mowers, there’s a safety catch that has to be held down in order for it to run. So, make sure it’s not being pressed on by anything. For more security, you can always take out the spark plug while making changes.
You can alter most modern mowers by just moving a lever. Some may need you to adjust every wheel one at a time. If this is the case, make sure you don’t change them to various heights by accident. Get in touch with a professional tree care company if you need more help.
During the winter, the only tree removal you might be thinking about is cutting down your fir or spruce tree. Though, if there’s a tree in your outdoor space that’s dead or diseased, now is the time to get rid of it. You don’t want it falling itself during a winter snow storm and destroy your property. There are many other reasons why you should remove trees in winter.
During the winter, you won’t find as many people walking, hiking, or camping in any space around your home. This makes it easy to remove trees. Your loved ones are warm and safe inside and not in the yard while a tree is being cut down.
No Leaves, No Problem
After the fall, the lack of leaves makes it simple to see what limbs to cut. Also, arborists have a better view of the trunk to the top. There’s little clean up when the leaves are already gone.
Take Out the Big Equipment
Once the ground gets hard in winter, it’s simple for machinery and large trucks to arrive at the space that the tree removal is to take place, unless the area is blanketed with snow. You might have to wait for the earth to soften to do a stump removal job. Well, you don’t have to worry about a dead tree falling when it’s not supposed to in adverse weather.
Benefits of Winter Tree Removal
In addition to controlling the risk of harm done by falling trees and hanging limbs, removing trees in the winter can be done without severely impacting the rest of your garden and yard. Come spring, the plants and grass will grow back, and the hazardous tree is gone.
Lesser Diseases, Faster Recovery
Winter is good for pruning and general tree maintenance. There are more minor diseases to get into open cuts in the bark. Also, trees are dormant in the wintertime. Any wounds from pruning won’t be visible until spring.
If you have a tree you need to be removed in the winter, contact a tree removal business and arrange to have a consultation.
We at Syracuse Tree Service want to help you with your tree service needs, our blog is where we provide helpful tips and ideas for the health of your trees.