There are several basic conditions that ultimately cause the death of all trees. These killing factors should be recognized by foresters and landscape managers and proper methods applied to prevent or control the condition(s). One thing to remember is that several of these factors can be present at the same time and all must be evaluated and addressed.
A tree living in an adverse environment or on a poor site can result in its declining vigor. Storms and fire can also influence a tree's health in many ways including seriously weakening a tree or stand of trees. Harmful insects and diseases will then take full advantage of a tree's poor condition and exact their own toll resulting in tree death.
Understanding these conditions and applying corrective measures early will save many individual trees and forest stands.