Beware of ‘Zombie Trees’ in the Mid-South!

Zombie trees on the rise

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Zombies are among us, sort of. Memphis has a lot of old trees that may seem alive, but they are actually rotting. It could cause some problems for homeowners.

Arborists call them “Zombie Trees”. There are some clues on trees to look out for.

“You can look at the bark of the tree, they might have little white spots or little brown spots. You may have shell fungus growing on the side of it. That would be a key indicator that you might have root decay,” explained Nathan Baker, an arborist with Jones Bros. Tree and Landscape.

Zombie Trees are at risk of falling during storms, and the cold weather does not help their condition either.

To the untrained eye, it may be hard to spot the signs and symptoms of Zombie Trees. Baker suggests contacting an arborist.

“All the arborists that I know here in town don’t charge to come out to take a look at your trees. So, it’s a really good idea to just have an annual inspection,” he said.

Homeowners with mature trees would be wise to keep their trees in good health to avoid falling victim to a zombie tree apocalypse.

“You can do that by deep root fertilization and managing insects and diseases,” said Baker, "Dead limbs will often harbor diseases. You can prune that out and you’ll help reduce the spread of diseases inside the tree.

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