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Did I kill my tree?

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Did I kill my tree?

Postby Canadian Ent » Mar 29, 2013 1:31 pm

I planted a dwarf Koran lilac last year. It is about 5'10"

The width of the truck is maybe 1 - 1.5 inches.

I did something stupid: I staked the tree to make it grow straight. The stake is the kind that bury in the ground. I used nylon cord wrapped around the trunk to attach it to the stake. I've done well staking other trees but generally put a sponge between the cord and trunk, and the cord only loops over half the trunk. I don't know what I was thinking this time, and instead I tied the cord completely around the tree and looped the cord around the stake instead of vice-versa.

I removed the nylon cord today and see that I successfully gouged a small ring around the entire circumference of the trunk. So the bark is gone, as well as the layer underneath (the phloem).

The good news is that wound is perhaps 0.5 cm high, but it does encircle the tree.

Will the tree live? Is there anything I can do? I was thinking of attempting a miniature graft.

I heard somewhere that polysporin ointment is good for tree wounds. Is that true?
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Re: Did I kill my tree?

Postby Countryboy » Mar 31, 2013 9:06 pm

If the tree has been living so far with the cord impressed into it, it will probably carry right on.
It will exude sap to try to cover the wound against penetration by insects. Do whatever u can to help that. I would use the heavy, black, sticky roof patching material to seal it against the elements 'till the tree can replace the bark by itself.

Best of luck! :)
Adopt the pace of nature, her secret is patience.
.....Ralph Waldo Emmerson....

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Re: Did I kill my tree?

Postby Canadian Ent » Apr 05, 2013 9:00 pm

The most amazing has happened in the last few days.

The cord bit dip - at least 0.5 cm. However, the entire affected strip, including the peeled back bark and the bite of the cord is peeling away from the tree like a scab, and underneath is new bark.

It's an absolutely beautiful thing to see.
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Re: Did I kill my tree?

Postby growitall » Apr 06, 2013 11:00 am

I've read that there's no evidence to suggest that using any kind of "sealant" material (tar, paint, even pruning paint) on bark wounds has any positive effect.
Recommending polysporin sounds, frankly, pretty nutty - the physiology of trees has no relation to that of mammals. Keep in mind that there's a lot of anecdotal hooey passed around on gardening forums!
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Re: Did I kill my tree?

Postby Countryboy » Apr 06, 2013 9:02 pm

growitall wrote:I've read that there's no evidence to suggest that using any kind of "sealant" material (tar, paint, even pruning paint) on bark wounds has any positive effect.


This action is strictly to keep the bugs out 'til the tree heals. And it has no negative effect.
Adopt the pace of nature, her secret is patience.
.....Ralph Waldo Emmerson....

Frank . . ON5a
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Re: Did I kill my tree?

Postby Canadian Ent » Apr 06, 2013 10:50 pm

growitall wrote:
Recommending polysporin sounds, frankly, pretty nutty - the physiology of trees has no relation to that of mammals. Keep in mind that there's a lot of anecdotal hooey passed around on gardening forums!


Polysporin doesn't have any positive effects on mammal physiology; it doesn't contribute some compound that the body uses to effect healing. Polysporin is, essentially, a bacteria killer. It speeds healing because the body doesn't have to be pre-occupied by fighting off infection.

Could this benefit trees? I don't know.
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