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ABC-7 First Alert: How to protect your trees

Right after Katie had a tree particle fall in her eye.
Sunglasses on for the second half hour of the 4PM show.

EL PASO, Texas - On Friday, very strong winds are expected across the entire area. High wind warnings have been issued by the National Weather Service El Paso office for the western region of the Borderland, and Red Flag Warnings (fire weather warnings) are issued for portions of Dona Ana, El Paso, Hudspeth and Culberson counties. Winds are expected to gust up to peak at around 60 mph across most of the area, but even 70 mph wind gusts are possible in the western region (Luna county towards AZ).

Of course, on windy days, it's a thought in the back of every tree owner's mind- will this be the day my tree comes down? ABC-7 spoke with Logan Mcmillan, who is the Regional Community Enforcer for West Texas, who shared several tips on how you can prevent your trees from coming down in high winds.

"To keep a tree from falling on your car or house or any of your property that you desire to be safe is again going to fall back on proper care or maintenance of the tree. So long as you aren't inhibiting the root system which stabilizes the tree- the tree will remain stable," he shared.

He said that pruning the tree is a good idea, but that you don't want to cut back more than 25% of your tree in a single given year.

"If you have an overall spread tree, you go through and remove about 25% and you go through and remove more, that's susceptible of being bent and tossed to the side."

In addition to pruning less than 25% of the tree, "making sure you don't have any vehicles parking over the root structure. Or if you installed a sprinkler system, that they didn't come through and cut the roots on one side of it, which would weaken it obviously to one side being susceptible from winds blowing," were other suggestions Mcmillan shared with ABC-7 on how to protect your trees.

Lastly, Mcmillan answered the question of whether staking a tree or not on a windy day is a good idea:

"For well-established trees, we recommend to not stake them because they've already solidified at their base. If its a freshly planted tree you can stake those trees but when you stake a tree for its own support you want to make sure you don't have it choked off you don't want to keep that, whether its a chain or cabling or simple rope, you want to make sure there's enough room for it to grow."

Stay safe!

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Katie Frazier

Katie Frazier is an ABC-7 meteorologist.


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