How to Straighten a Leaning Tree

Most trees grow straight and upright on their own. Sometimes, however, trees can lean for various reasons, from strong winds and heavy rains to wet soils and a weak root system. A tree may also lean because of loose soil, especially after planting or transplanting.   

If you have exceptionally loose soil, the tree’s weight may cause it to lean. As a seasoned tree service company in Destin, Florida, we have plenty of experience in tree care. In this post, we’ll explore how to straighten a leaning tree.  

how to straighten a leaning tree

Can You Straighten a Leaning Tree?  

A leaning tree poses a significant safety risk. Once a tree starts leaning, you never know when it may fall and cause property damage, injuries, or even death. Despite popular belief, tree-leaning doesn’t necessarily translate to poor health.  

While you can always correct recently transplanted small or young trees, fixing older leaning trees may prove challenging. Ultimately, the severity of the lean and the tree’s condition determine whether you can save a leaning tree. Exposed roots or too great a lean often mean you can do little to save the tree.  

How to Straighten a Leaning Tree in Your Yard  

Stakes should work perfectly at straightening small or young trees, where understanding how does branches grow is crucial for effective straightening. Besides the stakes, you’ll need a rope or wire. Here’s how to straighten a leaning tree, taking into account the natural growth patterns of its branches:

  • Start by hammering the stakes into the ground in the opposite direction of the lean.   
  • Next, straighten the tree, place the rope around the trunk, and then fasten it to the corresponding stake. Make sure the rope or wire has sufficient tension to pull the tree straight, and use an old piece of garden hose in the section where the rope touches the tree trunk to protect it from damage.  
  • Over time, you’ll see the tree straightening up.  
  • Leave the stakes in place for at least a year to allow the roots to become fully embedded in the soil. You also want to check the tree periodically and adjust the tension of the ropes if necessary to give the tree enough room to flex.  

If windy conditions, unstable soil, or other elements make the planting area unsuitable, consider transplanting the tree to another location. In the long term, transplanting may prove more sustainable than staking.   

However, transplanting requires extra caution and proper tree care to minimize the tree’s risk of succumbing to shock.  

Staking a large tree requires more time and effort, not to mention a professional assessment of the tree’s root system. Consider hiring a professional to straighten a large tree.  

Contact Your Local Tree Service for Help  

At Backridge Tree Service, we believe in quality over quantity. Our team has decades of combined experience you can count on for a full range of tree care services, including:  

  • Master arborist consulting  
  • Tree pruning  
  • Tree removal  
  • Tree risk assessment  

Call Backridge Tree Service at (850) 240-2829 to request a free estimate for tree service in Fort Walton Beach, Florida, and surrounding areas. Reach out for more information on how to straighten a leaning tree or to schedule an arborist consultation.  

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