Marrickville Council has, for the first time as far as I am aware, used cables & braces to stabilize a tree, rather than chop it down.
The tree is a 100-year-plus Deciduous fig (Ficus superba var henneana) that lives in the lovely Camperdown Park. It is a magnificent tree & totally worth the money & effort that has been put into retaining it. I applaud Marrickville Council for taking this management approach.
Council’s sign below the tree says it is one of only a handful known to exist in Sydney.
The tree has a visible crack in the base of the trunk. The trunk has been braced & has a measuring gauge that I assume will allow Council to monitor the crack to see if it is growing wider. The brace will fortify the stem & should prevent further splitting.
A number of stainless steel cables have been drilled through some larger branches & fixed with stainless steel bolts. These cables alleviate stress by supporting the heavy branches, especially during high winds.
The following is a 3-minute video explaining cabling & bracing, which is a common management intervention to save risky trees. The only difference is that with this tree, Council drilled right through the branches & attached with a stainless steel bolt, but the principles are the same. See – http://bit.ly/1Dgl0q7