Late falling leaves, early winter storm cause trees to fall

Early winter storm, late falling leaves cause trees to fall

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Leaves on the trees later than normal plus an icy storm early in the season left a mess for drivers and homeowners in Louisville on Thursday.

A large tree fell in the front yard of this Louisville home during the storm.
A large tree fell in the front yard of this Louisville home during the storm. (WAVE 3 News)

Trees blocked driveways and roadways. They fell on power lines and cut electricity, they covered lawns and caused damage to cars.

“We have a really unfortunate condition here,” said Cindi Sullivan, Executive Director of Trees Louisville. “That combination has really hurt a lot of our trees because of the weight of the ice--that’s not just on the branches and stems, it’s also on those leaves. Those branches are a lot heavier and that’s why we are seeing a lot of breakage.”

Icicles on a power line in Louisville.
Icicles on a power line in Louisville. (WAVE 3 News.)

If you’ve lost a big branch, Sullivan said you could lose the whole tree.

“The biggest issue is if the branch is broken and splintered and torn that’s not a good thing, because that will allow disease organisms and insects to get in there and create more damage,” Sullivan said.

So, what’s next?

If you’ve lost a tree in the storm, Sullivan said it’s not as simple as waiting for it to grow again--you should be proactive and replant.

“What we need to remember here in the Louisville area is that we have a really serious decline in our tree canopy,” said Sullivan. “We are losing trees by the thousands so that’s really serious because it has everything to do with the overall health of the community.”

If you have lost a tree, Trees Louisville will reimburse you for 40% of the cost to replace it. More information can be found at https://treeslouisville.org/.

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