A tree in downtown Savannah uprooted by Hurricane Matthew in 2016. Experts recommend checking on and pruning trees before hurricane season.
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A tree in downtown Savannah uprooted by Hurricane Matthew in 2016. Experts recommend checking on and pruning trees before hurricane season.

With hurricane season just around the corner, experts say it’s time to prepare, not just by assembling a kit and making an evacuation plan, but by pruning your trees. Flying limbs and falling trees can cause serious damage, so it's important to check on trees before hurricane season.

 

Falling limbs and uprooted trees can cause serious injuries and property damage. Tree experts say it’s important to check for dead limbs and signs of decay, like cracks or mushrooms growing on the trunk.

 

Chris Heim with the Davey Tree Expert Company said big, older trees like Savannah’s famous oaks need lots of nutrients, so you should eliminate other plants that compete.

 

"If you have shrubbery, a lot of times we're dealing with ground covers like ivy and things like that that are in under the tree, they're in direct competition with that tree," he said. "There's only a finite amount of resource in that area."

 

Some trees, like maples, can be more susceptible to high winds because they often grow in a way that's not structurally sound. But the risk can often be cut down with the help of pruning or support cables.

 

Heim said when a storm is approaching, arborists often get more calls than they can handle, so it's best to prepare trees for hurricane season now.

 

Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1 and runs through November.

 

MORE: Hurricane Season Will Be Above Average, NOAA Warns