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Who does this?.....

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by StuckInTheMuck, Jun 29, 2013.

  1. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    Moved into the new house a few months ago when snow covered the ground. When spring rolled around and the sap started running, I noticed that the previous owner had cut notches in these two red maples, presumably to help keep this pole held between the two trees about 4-5 feet off the ground. The sap was running out of the notches for a couple of weeks. I dont' imagine that these trees will survive the damage. Wondering if I should just take them down now or wait til they die. Are they a risk to leave standing since they are more susceptible to a wind storm? They're probably a magnet for insects now. The pics prove that this really happened....

    IMG_0563.jpg IMG_0562.jpg

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  2. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    I bet they will heal.
    ScotO likes this.
  3. Woody Stover

    Woody Stover Minister of Fire

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    I would wait and see.
    But that bark doesn't really look like Red Maple to me....got some leaves?
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  4. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    Nothing I can grab right now since I'm not home.. They're Red Maple.. Can't do anything about them until next winter anyway, so the wait and see course of action will likely be the chosen one.
  5. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    As long as they didn't 'ring' the tree, it'll heal just fine....how deep did they cut into the tree?

    Not sure what they were thinking when they did that....
    TreePointer likes this.
  6. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    One of them was about 1/4 through the tree.. the other was 1/3. So it certainly wasn't all the way around.. I'll keep an eye on them for a while. If the bugs get into them, they will end up in the wood pile. The other thing they did was install a fence around the backyard and used staples to attach the fence to some pretty nice trees. Fortunately, I will be able to get the staples out and the fence away from the trees before the trees end up growing around the fencing. Got a few other projects that I need to undo also..
  7. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    wow, if those cuts are that deep (especially 1/3 into the tree), i'd be considering dropping them. The tree may heal over, but with all the nasty storms we've been getting nowadays, I'd be worrying about it snapping off there.....that will be a weak spot in the tree for years to come.....

    Keep an eye on it for a while.
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  8. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    That's pretty much what I was thinking.. Will see how they make it through the year, but they'll probably end up in the 14-15 pile.
    ScotO likes this.
  9. Ehouse

    Ehouse Minister of Fire

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    That's an interesting question. How deep does healing go? Is it just in the new wood for the year, into the sapwood, or into the heartwood as well?
  10. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    I would think that if I did something to cover up the notches and keep the bugs and rot out, it would be able to heal. They are able to graft two or more kinds of trees together and as long as the sapwood lines up the distal portion of the tree continues to grow. I would think that cuts like this would at least stress the top of the tree on the side of the injury if not kill it. I think the induced weakness means that the time to come down will be sooner rather than later.
  11. Butcher

    Butcher Minister of Fire

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    As you said, your biggest problem will be bugs and moisture. Seal the wounds with a LATEX chauk and let the tree heal over it. I wouldnt worry about it.
  12. bmblank

    bmblank Minister of Fire

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    You can get grafting cement made just for that sort of thing also. Though I'd imagine caulk is cheaper, as long as it works.
  13. MrWhoopee

    MrWhoopee Minister of Fire

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    Healing will only take place in the living wood (sap wood, cambium layer), the heartwood will not heal. As long as the trees aren't an immediate threat to structures, no harm in taking a wait and see approach. Definitely seal the wounds.
    ScotO likes this.
  14. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    The heartwood will never heal, only the cambium layer will. So the damage that is done beyond that is permanent.
  15. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    The trees will always have a weak spot.
    Hope they don't cause you problems down the road
  16. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    I'm not so sure those trees will make it. You could try something like Tree-Kote to keep bugs and moisture out. It is not expensive and perhaps worth a try. Still, cutting that deep puts a tremendous stress on the tree. Good luck.
  17. StuckInTheMuck

    StuckInTheMuck Member

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    Thanks to all for your input. I'm not concerned about losing the trees. Based on where they are, I don't think they will threaten the house. The only structure in danger is the 5' metal garden fence. I was considering clearing this area since our garden is extremely small. For purposes of experimentation, I'll try the latex caulk idea since I we have some lying around the house. Will have to put the wife on this project and see what she can do.

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