Many trees lean, however it does not always mean that the tree is unsafe. Trees can lean for various reasons:
- Issues with the roots stability
- Decay within the roots
- Growing orientation in response to sunlight (positive phototropism)
- Soil instability
Tree surveyors’ generally categorise leaning trees into:
- Moderate Lean
- Extreme Lean
- In order to stabilise themselves from mechanical stresses trees will try to adapt. This is known as ‘The Axiom of Uniform Stress’ Trees adopt this method through reaction wood and adaptive growth.
Evergreen Trees such as Conifers
- Reaction wood in these trees is created in front of the lean at its stem base as a way of trying to stabilise itself, this is known as compression
Deciduous Trees (Trees That Loose Their Leaves)
- Reaction wood in these trees is created behind the lean at its stem base, as a way of trying to stabilise itself.