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I have a beech tree that I believe is infected with Beech Bark Disease. I believe that the tree is still in relatively good shape and so I'm hoping that there is a way to manage the disease.

From the research that I've done, it seems like there are some solutions. A lot of the information that I've come across is trying to promote one product or another so basically I'd like some unbiased information and advice.

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Thanks :)

*edit: I embedded the images directly and added some images of the "bleeding" spots which I assume are from Beech Bark Disease?

  • Ryan, please don’t use external storage services for photos (but a big thumbs-up for providing pictures!), we have a quite handy way of embedding them right in the question. Just use the image icon and the pop up menu will guide you through the process. You can always edit your own posts. – Stephie Mar 9 at 14:03
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Actually I don't think it is beech bark disease. First there is no sign at the base of the tree of sprouting of adventitious buds which would happen when there is a sudden constriction of sap flow up on the trunk of the tree. Second the wound is more like an ancient damage which compromised the bark some time ago and allowed the tissues underneath to dry out and cease normal function. This is pretty typical with beech which sails along just fine while the bark is intact, but any superficial damage, even careful pruning, lets in a host of problems. So my reasoning is that if it was BBD then the wound would have been recent, but it's not so it isn't. I do so enjoy playing with unclear pronoun antecedents.

So basically there is nothing to manage. You might examine the wound closely and clean off any loose bark but try to avoid cutting into live wood. Steel yourself to replace the tree eventually by encouraging beech saplings in the area. Most of my beech trees seed prolifically in the immediate area with replacements waiting to take over.

  • Okay, well that would be great to hear. This spot has grown quite a bit over the past two years, and there is another similar but smaller crack/dent on the other side of the tree that I hadn't noticed until this year. – Ryan Mar 13 at 2:34
  • But if the tree did have BBD, is there anyway to manage it for this size of tree in a reasonable way for someone without lots of equipment? – Ryan Mar 13 at 2:36

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