Cut down dead camphor laurel tree (Cinnamomum camphora).
By Northern Beaches arborist, Chris Allchin.
We were recently called upon to remove a dying camphor laurel tree from a Manly backyard on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.
While, from ground level, the tree looked healthy, it was clear that the top of the tree had already died. This is typical behaviour of a dying camphor laurel tree – they often die at the top and gradually the disease spreads down the tree.
Removing a dying tree presents several challenges.
As a professional arborist, I am well aware that a dying camphor laurel tree presents several tree removal challenges. The dead branches are typically extremely brittle and, while they may appear large and sturdy, they are unable to safely hold the weight of a grown man. In my 20+ years working in this industry, I have heard many stories of unqualified and inexperienced tree loppers having terrible accidents when removing branches from these lofty trees.
It is common for large trees like camphor laurels, jacaranda and liquidambar’s to become extremely brittle when dying. This isn’t a problem for our team as we have the skills and tools to successfully tackle the removal of these large species without incident.
Once onsite at the Manly property, we first assess the tree’s health. We initially removed one of the lower, dead limbs and found it was extremely light. There was no way the upper limbs could support our weight!
Watching the video above, you can see how we removed the dying camphor laurel tree without relying on the upper branches.
Tree removal with difficult access.
The location of the large tree at the rear of the Manly property, accessible only by limited side access, may have provided challenges for others but not our team.
To keep our time on-site to a minimum, always mindful of our client’s budget, our team works like a well-oiled production line, cutting the branches and trunk into manageable sizes, so we can quickly carry them to street level where our chipper and truck are located.
Northern Beaches Council tree removal regulations.
Under Northern Beaches Council tree removal regulations, within which this Manly property is located, camphor laurels are considered a ‘weed species’ and approval isn’t required to remove these trees.
The camphor laurel is a highly invasive, evergreen tree that can grow up to 20-30 metres in height. Native to China, Japan, Korea, India and Vietnam, camphor laurels were introduced to Australia in 1877. They can now be seen growing in many Northern Beaches and North Shore gardens. The camphor laurel is mildly toxic to humans and all parts of the plant are poisonous. Allergic skin reactions may also occur.
It’s important to note that, while camphor laurels are considered a ‘weed species’ by many Councils, some Councils still require approval before trimming or removing them. Please contact Chris directly for advice.