After standing in high water for months, many trees along the Missouri River are damaged. Graham Herbst is a Community Forestry Assistant and Nebraska Arborist and says he is just starting the long process of assessing flood damaged trees. With the flood tragedy, there is a small bit of good news regarding some unwanted trees along the river. He says trees not adapted to this area will be the first to go. Since they crowd out native species losing them is the “silver lining” to the flood.
Herbst says they are seeing some die-back with smaller trees. Mature trees have too much foliage to keep alive. He expects to see long term implications from the flood over the next couple of years or longer.
Herbst says some symptoms of damage include a leaning trunk, exposed roots, early fall coloration and leaf drop. Other signs include exposed roots, cracks in the soil surrounding the root flare, leaf yellowing or wilting, leaf drop, branch dieback and a mound of soil on the opposite side of the tree lean.
There are two workshops on caring for flood damaged trees planned. One will be held tonight (Monday, Sept. 26th) at the South Sioux City High School Auditorium from 6:30 to 8 pm. Another will be held Thursday, (Sept. 29th) at the Fontenelle Nature Association in Bellevue from 6:30 to 8 pm. There is another workshop that day for tree care and governmental professional’s from3:30 to 5 pm.