ICE DAMAGE to Our Leyland Cypress - Knowledgebase Question

Greenville, SC
Question by GeorgeMSco
December 19, 2005
Just coming out of a major and the worst ICE storm in history in our area. Some of our leylands are heavily bowed above the 10 foot level (present max height ~ 20 feet or less). Will they straighten back up a week of so after the ice melts (it is now 3 days and they have not shown any signs of doing so)or should they be topped? Have braced many of the shorter ones (6 to 12 feet tall) triangularly that the trunk merely rotated at ground level?

Thanks in advance for your advice and help!!!!!!!!!

George


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Answer from NGA
December 19, 2005

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I am so sorry! Ice storms can wreak terrible damage to trees. There is nothing you can do except wait and see. You may find that the most flexible branches are just bent and still frozen into place -- but not broken. Others will be broken or cracked and will need to be trimmed off. You will have to examine each one carefully. Since they are tall, you may want to consult with a professionally trained and certified arborist as to their prognosis and the best way to prune them in terms of their overall shape in the long term.

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