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A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Monday - April 01, 2013

From: Houston , TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Trees
Title: Hurricane damage on oak in Houston
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We have a very large oak tree that survived our last hurricane with lots of lost limbs. Then there was the drought. We have lost three large limbs on separate occasions on non-windy days. I love this tree! Can I cut everthimg back or is it time to cut it completely down?

ANSWER:

Having observed in the past how often damaged trees caused electric outages, property and even people damage, we think it is very wise of you to consider that. However, we are not in a position to make that judgment. Since a large tree will need specialized skills and equipment to take it down, we suggest you take it one step further and bring in a trained, licensed arborist to help you make your decision and then, if he advises removiing the tree, have it removed with the least possible damage to the surroundings.

 

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