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Keeping Your Trees Safe From Strong Storms Australian weather can be so volatile. One moment you're basking in the sun, and the next minute there's a ferocious thunderstorm surrounding your home. When we moved to our first property, we had a near-miss when part of a tree came down during a storm. Luckily, it missed our house, but it did flatten my gorgeous rose garden. Tree maintenance is very important in Australia, and my blog deals with all the different ways you can maintain the health of your trees. From pruning to identifying tree rot, find out how to look after your trees, so they don't come tumbling down when the winds pick up.

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Preparing for a Tree Removal Project

Tree removal is often considered as the last resort, but it's necessary sometimes. The process itself is not as easy as it seems, and it's usually best left for professionals. However, this does not mean you cannot take on a tree removal project on your own. With the right tools and procedure, you can make your tree removal project a success. However, you need to follow certain guidelines because mistakes often come with serious safety concerns. You can also end up damaging property if you do it the wrong way. The best way to avoid any negative outcomes is to prepare well for the project. Below is a brief overview of some of the key issues you need to remember in your preparation.

Inspect the Tree First

Inspecting the tree before cutting is something you can easily overlook, but it can help you identify a few vital things that can have a significant impact on the process of removing the tree. For example, you may be able to identify loose or dead branches. Some of the branches may even have broken off and may only be supported by other branches. Such branches may fall on you, on the people around your worksite or on structures around your property, causing serious injuries and damages. Inspecting the tree will also help you identify the direction in which the tree should fall, especially when there are things such as buildings, power lines and even fences nearby.

Consider the Felling Zone

An estimation of the tree felling zone is also of vital importance when it comes to tree removal projects. That's because trees are in most cases taller than you perceive them to be, which means their reach on the ground will also be farther than what you'd expect. Unless you have enough space on your property, it is imperative to get your estimations right. One practical technique for estimating the tree felling zone is to perform the axe handle experiment. Get an axe and hold it at arm's length. Then, with one of your eyes closed, start backing away from the tree slowly until the base of the tree is even with the bottom of the axe and the treetop is even with the top of the axe. At this point, the treetop should reach as far as your feet once it falls to the ground. However, since it's just an estimation, you need to extend the felling zone a little farther.

Clear the Escape Routes

Even if you are sure of the direction in which the tree will fall, you still need be a safe distance away when that happens. Therefore, remove any obstacles such as shrubs near your escape route. Also, your escape route should be on the opposite side of the direction in which the tree falls. 

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