Tree Cavity Filling

Arborists are commonly thought of as tree doctors
but . . . tree dentists?

Well, trees do get cavities, yes, but obviously no dentist needed.

Tree cavity filling with cement is a practice which has long been set aside as detrimental to the health and integrity of the tree.

Most people easily recognize a hollow in a tree. Does it mean the hollow should be filled? Cavity filling, thanks to modern research, has been almost completely obliterated.

Many years ago, cavity filling was widely practiced, but it’s now common knowledge among professional arborists that filling the tree cavity with cement can actually damage the tree. The column of cement created in the tree by a cavity fill doesn’t move. The tree, however, is always moving. Swaying with the wind and weather is normal whereas the cement doesn’t sway or move at all. The rubbing created by the tree’s movement and the solid column of cement further damages the tree.

Wood decay fungi that created the hollow in the first place are able to take advantage of the new injuries created by the rubbing and invade the remaining healthy tissue of the tree. There are new synthetic foams that can be sprayed into the cavity for purely aesthetic reasons, however, it doesn’t improve the tree’s health and doesn’t offer any added support. If structural support of a tree is required cables, braces or guys would be the recommendation, not cavity filling. Alternatively, it may be necessary to remove the tree entirely.

Through a thorough examination we can help you determine your alternatives.

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