Sweet Gum Tree
I have a 20-year-old sweet gum, approximately 50' tall, with leaves out fully at the top but sparse at lower branches. Five years ago our street was flooded for about a week (from back to back hurricanes), and the tree really hasn't been the same since. Even the fall coloring is not as varietal. Do I need to call an arborist? Has the tree reached its maturity and now it's time to be cut down? If it's diseased, how would I be able to tell (it does have lichens and air plants on it but no moss, yet)? I really don't want to have it removed (my mom planted it) but I also don't want to have it fall on my neighbor's house either.
Sweet gums can live to be 400 years old, and are both salt and water tolerant. An arborist might be your best bet.