enter image description hereenter image description hereenter image description hereI just noticed what seems to be rot in the main limb crotch. Should I cut off the limb? Can I save the tree?enter image description here

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    Gah! Is it hollow sounding when you knock on it in that region? – Rob Aug 7 '18 at 21:24
  • You can push the bark in a bit around the crack, but I wouldn’t say it sounds hollow. – Alan B Aug 7 '18 at 21:43
  • Can I see two more pictures? One of the entire tree and one about half the distance of the original? Also, does it seem correct too you to label this cracking area as a wound? I.e. (in your mind) could this be a disease sore? – Rob Aug 7 '18 at 21:46
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    Where is the tree growing? What part of the world? – kevinsky Aug 7 '18 at 21:52
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    I dropped a note in the chat room for @kevinsky and the other mods, in case they haven't seen it. I guess all we can do for now is inform the people we're currently interacting with about pictures. I don't know what they'll do when it's fixed. I hope the pictures that are supposed to be here will pop back in, but anyone we ask to post pictures in the meantime won't be able to. – Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL Aug 7 '18 at 23:54

Alright so you could just chop that branch off; however, if I were you I would attempt to save it first. At least this way we will know (next year or so) if the tree can make a proper recovery. So I drew a simple diagram that I am attaching to this comment for how I would go about attempting to support the branch. I would use a Canadian jam knot or a similar jamming knot so that your tension is adjustable.

In order to spur the tree into recovery mode or at least help it during the process. I would suggest you do heavy/semi-heavy pruning on this branch section early this winter.

The following diagram is just a suggestion; obviously, this could be done in other ways but I think it gets the point across. You might think about flipping the hangers or maybe attaching to steaks in the ground instead.

Support system example

In the end we want the larger branch to be able to support the smaller. Based on the images you posted I don't think this is a diseased tree. Rather the tree's eyes were too big for its head so to speak and the main branch simply couldn't support the the other. Which resulted in the branch splitting thusly.

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You're right, it doesn't look good. It does appear the cracked branch which is shedding bark is closest to the house, and because of that, I suggest you consult a qualified arborist regarding the tree - if that limb falls (and it does look like its on its way out) that wouldn't be good at all. This might have happened because damp lingers in the crotch of the tree, and over time, a fracture has appeared and perhaps some rot has occurred. The big question is, has any possible rot affected the other, apparently healthy limb coming off the same crotch... there's no sign of it from your pictures, but an inspection by a qualified arborist should determine if the tree is safe (or not), and whether the cracked limb should be removed.

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