October 13, 2017 0

Remove Those Broken Branches Now…Or Pay More Later

Fall snowstorms can be very destructive. Trees are still leafed out and the heavy, wet snow creates all sorts of havoc when branches break under the weight. Power lines are ripped down, streets become littered and hazardous, and property damage is widespread—from cars to roofs and windows.

Adding insult to injury, Metro Denver residents and businesses can be fined for failing to clear sidewalks and other public right-of-way on their property within 24 hours (4 hours for businesses). Don’t have sidewalks? You still have public right-of-way on your property. It extends 10’ onto your property from the street curb, sidewalk or not. If you don’t clear it, or if downed trees or branches are blocking a street, the city will call a contractor…and bill the property owner for the service.

The first order of business is to remove fallen branches and repair any serious damage, of course, and some of the work can be done by the homeowner—if they know how to do it safely. Never work around downed power lines or try to remove branches that could fall onto one. Call your power utility and leave that work to them. And chain saws are best left for people who have experience using them. Better to pay a tree service to remove limbs than a surgeon to reattach one of your own.

If you want to go the DIY route, you can leave up to 50 pounds of branches for curbside pickup by the city, but they can’t be more than 4 inches in diameter and no longer than 4 feet, and the must be tied in bundles. Also bear in mind that a large tree limb can weigh well over 100 pounds. Alternatively, Denver residents can drop off branches at the Cherry Creek Recycling Drop-off center. Other metro cities offer similar services. You can find more information and a list of drop-off sites on the 9News website.

Don’t overlook accidents waiting to happen, either. Partially broken trunks and branches will eventually fall, and they can threaten the tree’s life and the property around it. Injuries to trees are prime spots for infestations of pests and disease and need to be treated before further damage can occur. A professional arborist not only has the knowledge and equipment to clean up storm damage quickly and professionally, but can inspect your trees for signs of future problems, saving you trouble and money in the long run.

Donovan Arborists is certified by the International Society of Arboriculture and licensed by the City of Denver and other municipalities. We offer tree trimming services as well as a complete landscape maintenance package for property in the Denver area. And we’re always happy to give free estimates to homeowners and property managers for any services they may need.

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