A large tree branch succumbed to snow on Newport Avenue, near Beresford Place, Jan. 12. (Bob Harwood photo)

Avoid ‘branch failure’ – get out the hockey stick to clear snow from trees

Certain species of pine and cedar are susceptible to branch failure under snow

Parks professionals warn residents to look up when parking in the wake of heavy snowfall.

Snow accumulation can cause tree branches to break off, potentially damaging whatever lies underneath. Oak Bay’s parks services department is already out clearing a few incidents of what of what manager Chris Hyde-Lay calls “branch failures.”

READ MORE: Snow delays in Greater Victoria: traffic, buses, flights impacted

“When we add moisture into snow we begin to have branch failure,” Hyde-Lay said. “Right now it’s raining a little bit so that increases the weight of the snow on the branch, and there’s not a s lot of sap flow because it’s been so cold.”

Hyde-Lay says that sap flow helps keep trees strong while their growing, so the sustained cold weather isn’t doing any favours to fast-growing trees.

“They’re really all the same species of trees [that are falling]; they’re pine and deodar cedar. The crews will be busy for a good part of the day clearing this up,” Hyde-Lay said. “If people can go out to their hedges and just shake the snow off them to avoid any winter damage, that’s advisable, and that’s really true for any plant of value in your yard. If you can get the snow off of them it just minimizes the branch breakage.”

Hyde-Lay wanted to be clear that under no circumstances does he recommend climbing up to clear trees or hedges. That should be left to the professionals he said, recommending instead to use a broom or hockey stick.

READ MORE: Power out at Victoria International Airport



jesse.laufer@oakbaynews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Unplowed Roads parody song destined to be a classic

Move over Weird Al, Island elementary students on the same level

Watershed concerns prompt opposition to alternate Malahat routes

Motion submitted to Regional Water Supply Commission opposing highway in watershed

Vancouver measles outbreak prompts vaccine vigilance on Island

No cases here yet, but Island health authorities push measles vaccinations - and not just for kids

Robert Barron column: Thanks to municipal workers during snow storm

I’ve always wondered how anything gets done when mounds of snow fall from the sky.

Island fossil makes it to the top of the provincial list

Courtenay’s elasmosaur will be added to the official Provincial Symbols of British Columbia

‘Riya was a dreamer’: Mother of slain 11-year-old Ontario girl heartbroken

Her father, Roopesh Rajkumar, 41, was arrested some 130 kilometres away

CRTC report finds ‘misleading, aggressive’ sales tactics used by telecom industry

Report recommends measures to make a fairer situation for consumers

Trudeau takes personal hit amid SNC-Lavalin controversy: poll

Overall, 41 per cent of respondents believed the prime minister had done something wrong in the affair

B.C. photographer captures otters on ice

A Langley photographer was at the right place at the right time on the Fraser River

Snow not melting fast enough for some Greater Victoria residents

Resident unhappy with lack of snow removal on Mount Doug trails

‘Priceless’ hat stolen from Indigenous art store in Campbell River during break-in

Ernie Smith, co-owner of Awatin Aboriginal Art, looking for help in recovering stolen hat

Mid-Island dealing with high interest in backyard cannabis production

Regional District of Nanaimo reports dealing with rising desire for small-scale grows

North Cowichan to pause all logging in forest reserve for 2019

Municipality expects decision to cause $150,000 shorfall this year

UPDATED: Langford homes evacuated after water main break

Break at the corner of Goldstream Avenue and Strathmore Road, several homes without water

Most Read