Hurricane Season in New England and Your Trees - The Top 5 Things You Need To Know
Looks like we dodged another bullet with Hurricane Lee missing Massachusetts. We have been lucky because we hardly see hurricanes the way southern states do. However, hurricanes can leave a trail of devastation when they do hit this northern region. Among the casualties are the trees. Its not only the loss of trees, but more importantly what they hit.
1. Understanding the Hurricane Season
Hurricane season in New England spans from June 1 to November 1. However, the peak activity, as locals would attest, generally falls between late August and mid-October. The word “hurricane” immediately brings to mind scenes of sheer destruction. Images of flooded streets, toppled structures, heartbroken people rummaging through the remnants of their homes, and the haunting sight of once mighty trees now lying uprooted are hard to shake off.
2. The Rarity but Potential Intensity of Hurricanes in Massachusetts
It’s a blessing that hurricanes seldom find their way up the east coast to Massachusetts. Historical records reveal that only a handful of these storms have made landfall. But when they do, their impact can be significant. While these hurricanes may not be as powerful as those experienced by states like Florida or Louisiana, for Massachusetts, they’re still a force to be reckoned with.
The most notable hurricanes in Massachusetts can be explored through various online resources. One such source which provides a list of the top 5 hurricanes that hit Massachusetts is this link.
3. The Vulnerability of New England Trees
So why are hurricanes so devastating in Massachusetts? The simple answer lies in unfamiliarity. Our native trees aren’t accustomed to enduring hurricane winds. While a 40-60 mph gust might be considered a breezy day for trees in the Gulf of Mexico, in Massachusetts, it’s a tempest. Imagine being someone who jogs a couple of miles every week and is suddenly challenged to run a marathon – the outcome isn’t likely to be favorable. Similarly, our trees are ill-prepared for such a drastic change in their environment.
4. Preparing Ahead: The Importance of Tree Maintenance
With hurricanes being a relatively rare occurrence, it’s easy for residents to be caught off guard. Tree maintenance companies often find their phones ringing off the hook as a storm approaches. But by that time, it’s often too late to take preventive action. The key to minimizing damage is to be proactive. Routine inspection and maintenance of trees are vital. Healthy trees are more resilient to strong winds, while vulnerable or diseased trees pose a significant risk. Proper pruning, timely removal of weak trees, and cable and bracing your trees can make a big difference when a storm hits.
As we always say being proactive with your trees is the best way to keep them healthy and safe.