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View Poll Results: Do you know or have had any trees that got struck by lightning?
I know a tree that got struck and survived for many years 15 57.69%
I know a tree that got struck and was removed before it died 3 11.54%
I know a tree that got struck but died or got diseased later on 12 46.15%
I don't know of any trees that got struck 3 11.54%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 26. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-08-2018, 11:37 AM
 
2,701 posts, read 1,777,647 times
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Why not small claims court?

They appear to be grossly negligent, and have disregarded the contract terms. If they did it to you, they did it to others. And it will continue.
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Old 08-08-2018, 03:34 PM
 
9,747 posts, read 7,670,927 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nonchalance View Post
Why not small claims court?

They appear to be grossly negligent, and have disregarded the contract terms. If they did it to you, they did it to others. And it will continue.
Not sure it would amount to $500, the minimum required in my state to sue in small claims court - they would get some credit for taking down the damaged crown of the tree. The total bid, which I accepted, was $1,500, which I thought was on the low side for the work required, but it was their bid, not mine. Their contract clearly stated that as I had requested, the wood was to be cut into 18" firewood and stacked, neither of which was done. The claim that they lacked the tools to cut it was blatantly false, as normal-sized chainsaws were used in the removal of the fallen limb and certainly also could be used to cut the wood.

They were to be paid by the job, not by the hour, so the time required to cut and stack the wood should not even be an issue. Scheduling the work might be an issue, and I would have been okay with them returning to finish in a day or so - but it's arrogant, disrespectful, condescending and dismissive of them to expect me to accept this mess of piled-up wood chunks in the middle of my back yard lawn as "18-inch firewood".

I have a lot going on at present with some weekend deadlines facing me, and don't need the hassle right now, nor do I have the energy to pursue this at this time. By next week things should be different.

Meanwhile, I am going to speak with the arborist who referred me to this company, since his own was unable to handle the job - already called his company, but he's away until tomorrow. I think he might have some suggestions or at least recommendations for someone else to cut up the wood - and he should know about this company's reneging on the contract as well. As well as about their foul-mouthed workman.

I am afraid older folks are easy prey for this kind of thing, sadly. I'm not that old - and am probably going to be a lot more difficult for them to deal with than they expected.

Thanks for the empathy - much appreciated.
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Old 08-08-2018, 04:47 PM
 
Location: The Woods
16,457 posts, read 21,491,210 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cambium View Post
So I just got home and I had an "AH HA" moment!

Last year I had half a Maple tree die out. This spring it never came back. I was pondering what happened. Was a very healthy tree and didn't see any bugs or anything.

From May 26th




Then on June 16th I decided to spend the $400 and take it down.

Well... It just dawned on me......

See anything??



I am almost positive now I know what happened. LIGHTNING HIT THIS ONE TOO. 2 trees hit on my property within 1-2 yrs?

This one was like 15 feet from the home.

You might consider having lightning rods installed. I put them on my cabin in VT and one was actually hit a couple weeks ago. I found lightning hit trees a few hundred feet above my cabin last summer so installed them. Lightning protection can even be added to trees you value highly too.
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Old 10-31-2018, 06:03 AM
 
Location: Near the Coast SWCT
65,074 posts, read 47,417,386 times
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October 30, 2018 update on my Spruce that got hit 3.5mths ago.

Slowly showing signs of drying out.





Moisture meter reads only 17% 1 inch in. Very low especially for a Spruce. That's a percentage that is good to use for firewood. #Dry







Here's the moisture reading from my Pin Oak.





I'm going to miss this scenery next winter.

Spoiler

Last edited by Cambium; 10-31-2018 at 06:15 AM..
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Old 10-31-2018, 06:57 AM
 
Location: Swiftwater, PA
13,206 posts, read 10,607,078 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cambium View Post
October 30, 2018 update on my Spruce that got hit 3.5mths ago.

Slowly showing signs of drying out.
What did your moisture meter register on the far side of the Spruce? Most of the time lightening will track down the same path or maybe down just a few paths to the ground.

If the other side had good moisture readings I would presume that your tree will still be around for a few more years. Of course the lack of bark and crack where the lightening tracked could eventually cause it to die. I am curious if the application of a pruning sealer on the dead 'crack' would help slow the process; does anybody know?
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Old 10-31-2018, 08:13 AM
 
Location: Near the Coast SWCT
65,074 posts, read 47,417,386 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fisheye View Post
If the other side had good moisture readings I would presume that your tree will still be around for a few more years.
not sure a half dead Spruce is worth looking at or watching it get hit with a disease.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fisheye View Post
Of course the lack of bark and crack where the lightening tracked could eventually cause it to die. I am curious if the application of a pruning sealer on the dead 'crack' would help slow the process; does anybody know?
An Arborist told me the answer is No. It's not the air outside that is affecting it anymore and there is nothing much inside to keep and its not drawing moisture from the ground anymore.. It' not so much a matter of "losing" more moisture vs how much has been turned to vapor. We had the most humid summer on record and 2 feet of rain past 8 weeks and its still showing signs of drying out. Sealing the crack wont help. There's pretty much no more moisture inside the tree.

This is because Lightning (@ 53,000 degrees Fahrenheit) just zaps the entire insides dry. It probably has some moisture left because the thing was so huge and healthy.


Quote:
Originally Posted by fisheye View Post
What did your moisture meter register on the far side of the Spruce?
14.9%. But the probes only go in 1 inch so its not a good reading since the bark is thick.. But I'd thought the bark would have more than this though.




I should of drilled a little hole on both sides and grabbed some temperature readings from inside the trunk. That would of been interesting to keep track of.

Last edited by Cambium; 10-31-2018 at 09:42 AM.. Reason: Added more info
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Old 10-31-2018, 09:01 AM
 
Location: Swiftwater, PA
13,206 posts, read 10,607,078 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cambium View Post
not sure a half dead Spruce is worth looking at or watching it get hit with a disease.
You could easily be right. Here is a picture of a maple that was hit by lightening. I just cut it down about a week ago. It is about 18" in diameter and by looking at this falling cut you can see the internal damage the lightening did to the tree. Notice on the left side, that is missing the bark, that the damage the lightening did radiated into the inside of the tree. You can even see a small spike at about 90 degrees from the main hit.



If I finish cutting it up today I will post any better cross sections if I find any. I have been cleaning up the tops of all the trees first; there are six large white pines laying on that maple.
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Old 10-31-2018, 09:48 AM
 
Location: Near the Coast SWCT
65,074 posts, read 47,417,386 times
Reputation: 10533
Quote:
Originally Posted by fisheye View Post
You could easily be right. Here is a picture of a maple that was hit by lightening. I just cut it down about a week ago. It is about 18" in diameter and by looking at this falling cut you can see the internal damage the lightening did to the tree. Notice on the left side, that is missing the bark, that the damage the lightening did radiated into the inside of the tree. You can even see a small spike at about 90 degrees from the main hit.


If I finish cutting it up today I will post any better cross sections if I find any. I have been cleaning up the tops of all the trees first; there are six large white pines laying on that maple.
Yup... A bolt of lightning is so powerful. Think about it.. 53,000 degrees in a SPLIT SECOND! BOOM. ZAP.


Looking forward to those pics. I just split a Maple tree myself and burning it in the wood stove this month. When I was splitting it I was like, "oh yeah, this tree was toast". It was pretty much standing dead 2 yrs after it got hit..


I remember the Maple making strange noises last year and half the tree died.. Thought 2 branches were rubbing together in the wind making the noise and the dead branches were a disease... Nope...It was dying and drying inside and ready to fall. Then the entire tree never came back this spring and I noticed the split in the bark where the lightning hit.

Good news is... you don't have to wait for it to be seasoned to burn.
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Old 10-31-2018, 11:16 AM
 
Location: In the Pearl of the Purchase, Ky
6,973 posts, read 12,394,879 times
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I had lightning hit a tree in my front yard and went through the ground to my house. Wiped out my TV, microwave, and the electronics on my stove. And my next door neighbor said when it hit (I wasn't home) he needed new underwear.
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Old 10-31-2018, 11:34 AM
 
Location: Swiftwater, PA
13,206 posts, read 10,607,078 times
Reputation: 9385
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cambium View Post
Yup... A bolt of lightning is so powerful. Think about it.. 53,000 degrees in a SPLIT SECOND! BOOM. ZAP.


Looking forward to those pics. I just split a Maple tree myself and burning it in the wood stove this month. When I was splitting it I was like, "oh yeah, this tree was toast". It was pretty much standing dead 2 yrs after it got hit..


I remember the Maple making strange noises last year and half the tree died.. Thought 2 branches were rubbing together in the wind making the noise and the dead branches were a disease... Nope...It was dying and drying inside and ready to fall. Then the entire tree never came back this spring and I noticed the split in the bark where the lightning hit.

Good news is... you don't have to wait for it to be seasoned to burn.
I cut this slice from about a foot and a half up from the first cut in the other picture. What is interesting is that it actually shows more internal damage. You can clearly see that the lightening was not restricted to just the one side. The slice was about four feet above the ground. Farther up the tree it was not as noticeable. But I have not cut up the top because I have large white pines that I am slowly removing the branches and the maple is under everything. It will take me some time.

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