You don't have to live in "Cyclone Alley" to be worried about the impact of high wind. Many other parts of the country are susceptible to significant weather events and while they may not be as damaging as such a big storm blowing in off the water, they can still impact some of the valuable plants and trees in your back garden. How can you look after your trees, help them stand up to an onslaught and recover as quickly as possible when a storm has blown through?
Should You Intervene?
Some people think that they should leave mother nature on her own and leave these trees to fend for themselves. Certainly, you can do that but don't underestimate the damage that strong wind events can cause. If certain plants or trees are susceptible, they can be killed off in the long term and their appearance may certainly be affected adversely. If one of these trees is close to your home, it could eventually fail and cause serious damage or injury, due to errant branches or limbs.
Instead, you should introduce preventative maintenance by pruning and lopping parts of the tree ahead of time. When you remove any existing damage, you will also help avoid infestation, nutrient deficiency or starvation through a lack of oxygen.
Fixing the Damage
When you inspect a tree after a major windstorm, you will notice quite a lot of damage. Leaves will be torn and stems will be broken, while branches may be hanging in various places. Try to remove as much of the damage as you can, and don't be afraid to cut branches back if necessary. Just remember that they're not likely to grow back in the same dimension, and if this will adversely affect the overall shape or integrity of the tree, you may be best to remove it completely.
In advance of the storm, have a tree lopper thin out the canopy of the tree so that wind will be more likely to pass through it instead of using it as an obstacle. Once again, you can take down certain branches that will help you to achieve your goal without affecting the overall integrity or appearance of the tree.
Who Should Do This?
If the bad weather season is approaching, you shouldn't rush to complete this type of work yourself. It can be quite specialised, and if you're working at height, it could be dangerous as well. Bring in a qualified tree surgeon instead to do this for you.