Prop installations are necessary when the branches of a tree are hanging towards the ground. From a young tree just starting to a large tree with full branches that seem like they are growing downwards, prop installations can keep the tree growing healthily.
When to do a prop installation
Prop Installations are needed when the limbs of a tree are seriously hanging downward. In early stages, tree pruning can be helpful so the weight at the end of a tree limb won’t weigh it down as much. Sometimes in more severe cases, pruning is not sufficient. When the branches are starting to look parallel to the ground or lower, the best option is to prop them up.
Young fruit trees can need branches propped back up when they are supporting heavy fruit. Large and older trees can need this when they have a branch or many branches at risk of lowering.
The most typical tree for a prop installation: Live Oaks
Live oaks are the most common tree that needs prop installations. By nature, they have long winding branches that tend to lean downwards.
This kind of tree can be found in historic areas as it is known to live for hundreds of years with some known to be over a thousand years old!
How it is done
This kind of supplemental support is using some kind of stick or beam to hold a branch up off the ground. Depending on the size of the tree and branch that needs to be supported, that will determine the material and method of propping. A fruit tree may need just a stick properly placed to give some support to a branch being weighed down by fruit. Other trees can be so large a beam with the thickness of a telephone pole might be needed to properly hold the weight.
Do you think your tree may need prop installations? Before deciding, call a Certified Master Arborist to get a tree assessment. They will tell you if propping will be right for your tree’s health.