Yes! Ivy can play a part in harming your trees. Here are a few ways in which ivy may be working to weaken the trees on your property:
Trees and Ivy rely on the same supply of water and nutrients
Trees in the Urban Environment need more nutrients than their counterparts in natural forest areas. Trees planted around our homes and businesses are assaulted by many types of stressors, like construction, soil compaction, girdling roots, and more. This means our trees need all the help they can get in regards to water and nutrients in order to stay strong! Ivy can redirect nutrients that would otherwise have gone to the tree to strengthen itself instead. Also, ivy grows aggressively; the more it grows, the more nutrients it’s stealing from the tree.
Ivy blocks sunlight penetration
Ivy has a habit of taking over whatever it grows on; for trees, this may mean that webs and tendrils of ivy may block out sunlight that the tree needs to uptake nutrients and grow. As previously mentioned, trees need help getting all the nutrients they need in urban areas; the last thing they need is pesky ivy blocking out valuable sunlight!
Ivy can weigh down branches putting them at a higher risk of damage
Large amounts of ivy can get heavy! Holding extra weight could cause tree limbs to fail, possibly causing damage to buildings, cars, property, and more. Just because tree limbs with ivy aren’t breaking now, it doesn’t mean that with summer showers or storms, damage won’t happen!
Over time, ivy weakens the tree making it a target for pests and disease
By not getting the water and nutrients needed to remain strong, trees become more susceptible to attacks from insects and diseases. The first step to avoiding insect infestations or diseases is to make sure your trees are healthy, getting all the proper nutrients they need to remain strong in the urban forest.
Want to know what’s going on with your trees and shrubs? Have questions about what you see at your property? Our team of Arborists can help!
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