Tag for questions asking how to look after trees.

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21
votes
2answers
831 views

How can I revive a tree that's been stripped of bark?

I've got what I think is a cedar tree in my backyard that is missing most of its bark on one side from the ground to about 4' up. (Thanks to my puppy who is a shredding machine.) The branches next to ...
19
votes
7answers
35k views

Why do people paint some tree trunks white at the bottom?

I've seen trees with the lower trunks painted white in a number of places around the world but have never found a definite answer to why this is done. Some suggestions that I've heard are to make them ...
16
votes
3answers
988 views

Does fruit on fruit trees need to be thinned?

Do fruits need to be thinned on the tree? For example, I have a young Pomelo tree that's producing fruit for the first time. In order to get bigger, nicer fruit, should I be thinning the fruit? How is ...
16
votes
3answers
2k views

Is staking young trees helpful or harmful?

I frequently see small trees staked with some support twine or rope, presumably to aid against strong winds. However, I've heard or read somewhere that staking small trees can actually be harmful, ...
15
votes
2answers
802 views

How should I prune lemon trees?

I have a lemon tree that is 8 years old. I didn't water it enough during its first years, and as a result it's only 2 meters (6 feet) high. How and when should I prune my lemon tree to stimulate its ...
14
votes
1answer
4k views

What is my citrus deficiency, based on leaf appearance? And how to treat?

In the images of my citrus below, you can see the leaves are paling towards the edges. What is the deficiency and how can I fix it? The soil is clay-dominated with some sand and coloured red, ...
13
votes
4answers
7k views

How should a lemon tree with yellowing leaves, peeling bark, and small fruit be saved?

Our lovely lemon tree is in trouble... We live in Northern California. Starting mid-last summer our tree began yellowing. We've called an arborist out to the house but the advice has been pretty ...
13
votes
3answers
2k views

Will a cedar tree grow new limbs?

I've got a cedar tree that divided into two smaller trees, and the previous owners tried to keep the twin trunks together by tying a rope around them. The rope eventually strangled one of the trunks, ...
13
votes
1answer
3k views

How do I care for potted apple seedlings over the winter?

On a whim, this spring, I planted several apple seeds in a large pot just to see if they would grow. Two seedlings have come up and are very healthy looking, despite being munched by deer, and the ...
12
votes
4answers
28k views

How far (on average) do tree roots extend out from the base of the tree?

I a looking to plot out my new garden site for next year and am wondering how far I need to be away from some nearby trees. The trees are a few different types (apple, oak, pine etc.) and anywhere ...
11
votes
3answers
4k views

Can I move a self-seeded oak tree into a pot to keep it small?

An oak has self seeded in our garden. Has got to about a metre tall and seems happy. We don't have anywhere near enough space for an oak but seems a shame to kill it. Can we move it to a pot to keep ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

Will my avocado tree produce fruits in my non-tropical climate region?

I have successfully germinated an avocado seed and am now willing to bring it outside and plant it in the soil. I live on the coast in Northern Portugal, so we never get negative temperatures. ...
11
votes
4answers
20k views

How do I encourage my plum tree to produce fruit?

I have a victoria plum which I planted almost 3 years ago and hasn't produced any fruit. Last year (1st summer) it produced a small amount of blossom. This year it produced a lot of blossom but no ...
11
votes
1answer
238 views

How are Japanese Maple Trees cultivated?

I have mature Japanese maple trees in my yard that are extremely fertile. I find dozens, if not hundreds of saplings all over the yard. Some have even grown several feet tall. Is there a way I can ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

Paint dumping to kill tree stump, will it affect my nearby arborvitae or raspberries?

My neighbor must be advising her home painters to dump their leftover paint, for several days now, on a tree stump that she just last week said might need a pick axe to remove. This stump is along ...
10
votes
3answers
430 views

What is a general rule of thumb for when to prune plants and trees?

It seems like every plant that I come across has a different (and seemingly random) best time to prune. Is there some sort of generally rule that I could apply to any plant and have a pretty good idea ...
10
votes
1answer
130 views

How to “correct” uneven trunk widths in a cherry tree?

I have a cherry tree that is about 2 years old. Strangely, the width of its trunk above the grafting joint is much thicker than that of the rootstock (mazzard) below and I have not seen such a ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

Is there a traditional method/style for pruning a Chocolate Silk tree?

I have a containerized Chocolate Silk (a.k.a. Summer Chocolate) tree that is two years old (i.e. it was planted in its present container from a branchless and rootless stalk two years ago). It has ...
9
votes
2answers
757 views

How and when to plant young grafted fruit tree?

Our backyard is in a Mediterranean climate (Adelaide plains, South Australia) and we've been gifted a young grafted apple tree which has its root ball still wrapped in plastic. It's about 1.3m (4ft) ...
9
votes
4answers
4k views

How to deal with suckers on a Bradford Pear Tree?

I have two Bradford Pear Trees at the front of my yard. They were planted ~1997. (The HOA requires all lots in the development to have them.) Little sprouts that keep popping up from the ground ...
9
votes
1answer
518 views

Damaged Tree Heather: can it survive?

I have a tree heather (Erica arborea) in my rockery (acid soil) which I grew from a seedling about twenty years ago. Until it was severely damaged by a prolonged freeze-up last winter, it was about ...
9
votes
1answer
596 views

How should I prune my pomegranate trees?

I have a pomegranate tree that is 6 years old. It didn't get enough water for several years, and was growing under a canopy of other trees, so it only grew about 1 meter (~4 feet) high. How and when ...
9
votes
1answer
119 views

How should I choose which trees to cull?

I harvest firewood from a small woodlot behind my house. I almost exclusively cut "culls" -- dead, dying, or diseased trees that aren't going to yield much additional wood in the future anyway. My ...
8
votes
2answers
220 views

What to do when an animal dies inside a hollow tree?

We have a beautiful Shag Bark Hickory next to the house with a large hole about 18' up. A family of raccoons moved in a few weeks ago and had a litter. Recently we've seen a lot of domestic ...
8
votes
3answers
4k views

How should I prune this overgrown pear tree?

I have a pear tree, which is very zealous. Whatever it decides to do, it does in excess. First in the spring it sends out all sorts of new branches--all of them vertical. I snipped them off after they ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I determine which trees are unsafe in strong winds?

We had some fairly extreme weather in the UK, enough wind to blow over a tree. Luckily nobody was hurt as the trunk rested larger branches, narrowly missing the neighbours fence. The trunk and ...
8
votes
1answer
5k views

Why are my honey-locust tree leaves turning yellow in mid-summer?

As hot as it's been I've been worried that the tree was not getting enough water, and it seems with increasing the water amount the leaves have turned even more yellow. How can I tell if I am over- ...
8
votes
2answers
855 views

How do I prune a cork-screw willow?

I would like to have a small "cork-screw' willow in my front yard. I don't want it as a bush, but with a strong middle trunk. It currently is about 1.5 feet tall. It has three fairly equally tall ...
8
votes
1answer
431 views

Is this a normal amount of sap from an apricot tree after pruning?

My apricot tree is secreting what seems to me as copious amounts of sap. Is this a normal amount of sap after pruning about a year ago, or is my tree sick?
8
votes
1answer
516 views

Should my spruce tree roots be covered?

This Norway spruce's roots have always been on top of the ground. The soil it is growing on is very hard white dry soil with a layer of decayed needles on top. It has been growing fine so far, but ...
7
votes
3answers
18k views

How should I prune weeping willow?

I prune a lot of of neighborhood trees, but I've come to a small problem. Some people like their weeping willows high enough that they can walk underneath without brushing it. I had been doing this by ...
7
votes
2answers
437 views

How do I care for grapefruit seedlings?

I got two tiny grapefruit seedlings for free and I don't know how to care for them. They are in very small pots and all the care they are getting is watering. They are 2" tall. I don't live in the ...
7
votes
1answer
128 views

Is it okay to top a redwood tree?

Our redwood is about 30 years old and about 4 stories high. I would like to shape and top it to keep under control. Would it be fine to top off about 10 or 15 feet and also shape it? A tree trimmer ...
7
votes
1answer
117 views

What to call this latex material used to tie trees?

I got some special hollow (rope/wire/string/tube - I don't know how to call it) - it is green and made of latex about 4 or 5 mm in diameter and used to tie young trees to prevent wind damage. Can ...
7
votes
2answers
139 views

What is a sucker and how does it differ from a water sprout or branch?

In a post about renovating mature pear trees there is a diagram (below) showing tree nomenclature as it pertains to pruning. In it, the letter "A" indicates suckers, and "E" marks shaded interior ...
7
votes
2answers
425 views

What is happening to the leaves of my avocado?

I have an avocado plant in my outdoors balcony. It's been growing nicely, but there are small brown dots/holes in the leaves for some time now. I don't see anything in the underside of the leaves, and ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

what care should I give my lemon and orange tree after 8 months neglect?

In July I moved into a new house with an established lemon tree (about 4-5 m high) and orange tree (3-4 m high). Apart from collecting the last crop we have left them alone. The previous tenants grew ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

How should young honey locust trees be pruned?

I have four young (2-3 yrs) Honey Locust trees which seem to be doing very well this year. By that, I mean they've shown lots of growth and the leaves are very green and healthy. The trunks of these ...
6
votes
2answers
4k views

How do I keep oak trees from sprouting?

I have a lot of nice sized oak trees. I have pin, black, and chestnut. Every once in a while one of them puts out sprouts all over the trunk and starts looking like a green pillar. How do I keep that ...
6
votes
1answer
3k views

Are tar based products really useful in treating tree wounds?

There are a lot of articles on the web ranked highly in searches that advocate the use of tar/tar based products to seal tree wounds such as pruning cuts. For example — "Homemade tree wounds". ...
6
votes
1answer
78 views

How close should a maple tree sapling be to marked utilities?

Last summer I planted a maple sapling in my yard. I foolishly did this without calling 811. This month I have other work to do and had my utilities marked. When the marking was done I discovered that ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I care for a young fig tree?

I received a foot long rooted cutting of a fig tree that is hardy in zones 7-11. I have it in a clay base soil in the ground. It currently has two small leaves. I am completely ignorant of how to care ...
6
votes
1answer
962 views

Pruning a mimosa

I have a mimosa and I have to prune it. I'd like to be less invasive and do this "operation" in the best way. Which is the best weather to prune mimosa? Which is the best time to do it?
6
votes
1answer
83 views

How can I rescue my tree?

I moved into this house last year, so I've only seen this tree with leaves once and I do not know what kind of tree it is (I live in Iowa). I noticed this spring that the leaves didn't seem to come in ...
5
votes
1answer
143 views

Are lichens healthy for trees?

I've always thought lichens were neutral to tree health, and I think they are attractive, but someone recently told me to get rid of them, because they will cause rot and harbor disease. Do they ...
5
votes
1answer
339 views

Is there a way to encourage needle re-growth in fir trees?

My wife bought a potted "Christmas Tree" last year in the week running up to Christmas. It wasn't in the best of shape when we got it and about a week after being inside the house, it shed the ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How to care for a large redwood?

I just bought a home in the CA bay area. My front yard is dominated by a large redwood tree that seems in good health. I really love the way it looks. By large I mean 5-6 stories in height, planted ...
5
votes
2answers
967 views

Can I put a compost pile under a tree?

The most convenient spot for my new compost pile happens to be under a young apple tree. I would put it there, but I have a few questions first. Will I be able to make successful compost in heavy ...
5
votes
1answer
497 views

Can I get rid of sap stains on my mulberry tree?

My mulberry tree was leaking sap earlier and it left ugly black stains down the trunk. The tree has deeply furrowed bark. Can I remove this?
5
votes
1answer
137 views

What are these red “quills” on my willow tree?

I just noticed several clusters of red "quills" which sort of look like small buds on the main trunk and the two largest lower branches on my weeping willow tree. The little growths are red and ...