It is time to clean up storm damage left in your lawn.  If you live in the Cedar Rapids area, chances are that you experienced severe weather last week.  Rapid rain fall and strong winds swept across eastern Iowa leaving behind a large path of storm damage destruction.  Many home owners had extensive storm damage to their homes and trees.  With the high temperatures that we are experiencing, it is important to remove all debris from your turf areas as soon as possible.  Asphalt shingles left on the grass areas can heat up rapidly and kill your turf.  If you have not removed these from your lawn by now, chances are it is too late to save your grass.  Tree branches and other debris left on your lawn for an extended period can suffocate your grass.  If you have debris covering any landscape plant material, it is also important to remove that debris. 

How to prune trees with storm damage.

When pruning trees that were storm damaged, it is vital to reduce possible infection points.  Insects and funguses will search out these stress points and may over time kill your tree.  It is important that you properly prune the damaged areas back to the main branch and minimize the wound.  When pruning some varieties of oak and elm trees, caution should be taken to prevent fungal infections.  These trees should be pruned in the winter if possible to prevent further damage to the tree.  Sometimes it may be necessary to prune damage areas in these trees, but limit yourself to what is absolutely necessary.  If you are using the same trimming equipment on multiple trees, clean your equipment after each tree with rubbing alcohol to help reduce the spread of funguses from tree to tree.

The last thing that you would want to do is completely kill off your tree by improperly pruning it.  If you are performing the pruning yourself, make sure that all of your saws and loppers are sharp so that you can create a clean-cut.  If your tools are ripping branches instead of neatly clipping them, your tools are too dull.

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