Bracing and Cabling
Developed trees tend to serve as a means of protection for humans, animals and the environment at large. Trees can serve as a shade for people who feel like staying outside on a sunny day and as a shelter for birds. However, on some occasions, it is the trees that require protection from man to live long and stay healthy and also avoid being a source of destruction to lives and properties. And the weakness of trees can be as a result of the age of the tree, the type of wood, inadequate tree care etc. and due to the defect of the tree, it tends to appear cracked, broken, leaning towards one side, exaggerated swaying in windy periods etc.
A bracing system is used to hold a tree that is suffering from the lack of structural integrity, to prevent its limbs from falling off. To set up this system, the professional drills a hole through a tree. To prevent additional cracks, a rod is inserted into the drilled hole and bolted to the tree.
Not to be confused with support, which is a method of stabilizing trees with steel rods, the cabling system is a method of supporting tree branches with steel cables or synthetic fiber support systems. It is more commonly known as a wiring tree; the technique is intended to provide tree branches with supplemental support and even limit the movement of their branches during windy conditions. This method is most commonly applied to trees that have large, heavy branches or secondary trunks that are prone to fracture.
Aside from the above, this method is also utilized when one wants to save a tree that has a split trunk. It is also used to assist a tree with a large branch growing in an awkward position; when cabling is carried out at this stage, it is done as preventive action.
Why do we install cables and braces?
There are very simple reasons for the widespread of the use of a bracing system, and we have categorized the reasons into three to understand why a supplemental support system is used for trees.
- Prevention – supplemental support is used for trees to decrease the possibility of experiencing damage caused by a falling branch or limb on a healthy tree. It is carried out as a preventive act; it is done to prevent a tree branch from destroying property when it is near a building
- Preservation – Cabling and bracing is carried out to preserve the beauty of the tree
- Protection – It is also carried out to save the tree from damaging lives, properties and the environment at large.
Differences between cable and bracing
From the above, it is evident that cabling and bracing serve almost similar purposes. However, it is worthy to note these two methods have their differences.
- Cabling is used to protect the upper canopy of a tree whereas bracing is used more for the lower regions of a tree.
- Another difference is that cabling involves the setting up of steel rods between branches, whereas bracing involves the use of invasive steel rods above and below the damaged area.
- Cabling also allows for the distribution of structural stress among these connected branches, whereas bracing just assists in securing cracks in trunks of trees.
- Bracing has more rigid usage as it doesn't allow branch movement, whereas cabling permits movement for branches.
- Cabling reduces the possibility of incurring damage during tough climatic conditions. Often, bracing is utilized alongside cabling.
Will Tree Cabling and Bracing Help My Tree Survive Storms?
The answer is definitely yes. However, it is advisable to hire a professional often to carry out this service; this is to ensure that the process is carried out based on the ideal standards.
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