Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

Hwy 149 High Bridge

St. Paul, West St. Paul, Mendota Heights

Tree condition rated “poor”

Foresters from MnDOT and the city of St. Paul have classified several trees in the project area as being in "poor" condition.

Knowing the condition of urban trees and the state of the environment in which they exist allows city and state foresters to make better-informed decisions. Trees in urban environments are exposed to different stresses including soil compaction, lack of nutrients, air pollution, de-icing salt, drought and confined space. These stresses have a negative impact on the condition and health of urban trees. As a result, urban trees have shorter life spans than trees in a natural forest and rarely reach a mature size.

Younger trees are essential in continuing the future urban forest canopy. Both proper diameter distribution and good tree health ensure that the loss of older trees due to natural decline will be a gradual, phased process, without the sudden absence of the larger diameter classes.

A tree in poor condition reflects the present structural integrity of a tree, as well as its state of health. A poor condition indicates the trunk has damage, decay, hollowness and/or other damage. Generally, major limbs and/or branches could be dead, broken or missing. The smaller branches, leaves or reproductive structures extending from the truck of main limbs can be thinning or unbalanced. Foresters also look at the expected life expectancy of the tree and if pests are present.