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Questions tagged [trees]

For questions about trees: selection, planting, care, diagnosis, pruning, identification, etc.

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9
votes
2answers
3k views

Cedar Hedge drying from the inside

We planted a cedar hedge this spring (4 months or so ago). The trees were fine this summer, some of them had one or two dried branches; nothing out of ordinary. At the end of the summer, some trees ...
15
votes
2answers
7k views

Should trees be staked when they are planted?

Horticultural practices do change and research can be a driving force. It wasn't too long ago that standard practice to stake a new tree was a six foot T bar and and a strand of wire. Should all ...
9
votes
1answer
6k views

Raised bed around tree. Do I need to protect the trunk?

I wanted to put in some raised beds that are about 1' deep above ground, and that wrap circularly around a Northern Arizona cedar tree. Do I need to plastic or a rock/cage around the tree trunk to ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

Are my Emerald Arborvitaes recoverable?

I bought 31 thujas a couple of months ago and some of them are really struggling. I installed a drip line a week ago, but am wondering if these trees are completely dead. Here are a bunch of ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the term for this pruning technique that causes stubby, clublike branches?

These Platanus × acerifolia trees (London Planetree) were pruned to have this short, stubby branch structure. What is this called, and how is is done?
25
votes
4answers
6k 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, ...
14
votes
3answers
16k 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 ...
11
votes
4answers
90k views

How far will pine tree roots spread?

I have a very tall pine tree in front of my house. I am about to start work digging up my downstairs floor and re-doing it. I'm just wandering if before I start I should look further into the roots of ...
10
votes
2answers
2k 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 ...
8
votes
3answers
5k views

How do I kill this salt cedar?

The front yard of my New Mexico (USDA zone 7a) house has a salt cedar (Tamarix ramosissima), which is growing like a huge bush. Its salt uptake appears to be preventing anything else in the vicinity ...
7
votes
2answers
11k views

Bay Leaf Tree (Laurus Nobilis) with severe scale

I'm new to gardening as I have just bought my first house. I inherited a very large (about 6m tall) Bay tree that is severely sick. I took a sample to my local garden center and I was told that it ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

What is 'Apical Dominance'?

When pruning trees, most notably conifers, you must be aware of a phenomenon known as 'apical dominance', when choosing your pruning technique, and selecting shoots for the permanent structure. What ...
21
votes
6answers
592 views

How can I naturally encourage birds into my garden?

We love having our garden filled with birds, thus we have put up a variety of bird feeders. We also make lots of water available for the birds. The result is a 2½ year old that can identify about ...
19
votes
1answer
106k views

How do you tell if a tree is male or female?

I was reading through some of the questions on fruit trees, because I've been thinking about getting some blueberry bushes and cherry trees, and I see a lot of people mentioning that the trees don't ...
12
votes
1answer
544 views

What is a good method for planting Ball and Burlap trees?

This is when the tree is dug (usually using a tree spade), and the root ball is wrapped in burlap for short term storage. It can be in a wire basket, usually if the ball is large. The burlap is ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

What kind of tree is this?

I obtained this small tree from a friend. It has spiky, shiny leaves, soft to the touch, and delicate stems. New leaves are lime green, gradually darkening as they grow larger. Older leaves are broad ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

What time of year to mulch/feed trees?

This answer recommends putting down a layer of compost mulch in the fall in order to slowly feed the tree. (In addition to the unmentioned weed control and moisture regulation.) It makes sense to me -...
8
votes
3answers
4k views

Does moss harm the tree it grows on?

I have seen some trees with a thick layer of moss growing on their branches, does this harm the tree? Should this layer of moss be removed or can it safely be left on the tree?
17
votes
1answer
67k views

What is the average lifespan of most maple trees?

In general how long do maple trees live? Does the lifespan vary a lot according to species? I'm thinking of planting a few in my yard and I'm wondering how long they will be around.
17
votes
2answers
7k views

How should I prune an overgrown peach tree?

I have just moved into a home with a peach tree that appears healthy, but overgrown; it has clearly not been pruned in many years (although I have cut out some of the branches that made it impossible ...
15
votes
2answers
5k views

Will it kill my potted tree if I use tree fertilizer spikes?

I recently bought some tree fertilizer spikes to feed my potted dwarf kumquat and lime trees. After I got them home, I read the following warning on the side of the box: NOTE: Never apply within 30" ...
14
votes
1answer
1k views

What are these brown, cap-shaped mushrooms on my birch tree?

I live in Massachusetts and have several birch trees in my yard. One of them has brown, cap-shaped mushrooms growing in groups up and down the trunk. As you can see, the tree has a big crack in the ...
8
votes
4answers
12k views

Is my tree too close to my house?

I have an ornamental cherry tree approximately 30 ft tall, which is now close enough to my house that I could touch it from my window. I would like to keep it , but am concerned it will damage my ...
7
votes
3answers
638 views

Is this an Oak Tree?

I've got this tree down in my back yard and I cannot figure out what type it is. The bark looks like Oak but the leaves I'm not sure about. There have been no nuts/acorns drop from it that have been ...
7
votes
2answers
3k views

What is this South Florida tree?

This tree is on the side of my South Florida house. The trunk is really thin. The diameter can't be more than three inches. I haven't measured the tree, but it's gotta be about 10-12 feet tall and ...
4
votes
1answer
119 views

How to heal this needled plant?

This little guy is suffering and I'm not sure how to help him out. Any ideas?
4
votes
1answer
542 views

Will removing the above-ground roots of an oak tree compromise its safety?

I have a large oak tree with above ground roots that grow towards my house and the other way. Will removing the roots endanger the safety of the tree in case of heavy storms. Part of the tree ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

Staking a Weeping Willow

My mother has always wanted a weeping willow and we have a nice spot that won't hold water, but the majority of run-off water from the yard flows past it. So I bought her one and planted it. I babied ...
17
votes
7answers
31k views

Will I get lemons from a tree grown from a lemon seed?

I have planted seeds of a lemon and want to know, if I have to graft the lemon plant so I can get lemons? Or will they in time grow without grafting?
26
votes
7answers
1k views

How is an Avocado plant started?

I find ourselves buying one or two Avocados twice a week. It's one of these things that I've been wanting to do for a long time: grow an avacado plant. What is the ideal climate or exposure to ...
23
votes
3answers
117k views

Can I cut off exposed tree roots without harming the tree?

Large trees often have roots protruding out of the ground around the base of the trunk (such as the ones that can push up sidewalks next to the tree). When is it safe to cut those roots (that might be ...
16
votes
5answers
109k 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
5answers
100k views

Why is my new Acer tree dying?

I recently bought a small red Acer and moved it into a more permanent pot. It's about 2 1/2 feet tall and since I've moved it, the leaves have started to brown and shrivel like a dead leaf would in ...
10
votes
2answers
8k views

How do I prune a cherry tree to keep it short?

I've just planted a new cherry tree, and I would like to keep it short enough to be able to harvest the fruit with nothing more than a step ladder. Seeing as I've just planted it, I feel that I ...
27
votes
5answers
4k views

What is a fast-growing deciduous tree for shading house in summer? (Long Island, NY)

My town recently took down a large 80 year old maple tree that sat on the south side of my house. Unfortunately that tree provided much-needed shade and now I have already noticed very high ...
17
votes
5answers
6k views

Should I remove the tree roots coming from the neighbouring garden?

When I was digging out* a patch to grow veggies earlier in the spring I found big roots in the soil unconnected to anything in our garden. It looks like they're coming from some kind of palm trees ...
15
votes
1answer
348 views

What is the risk of soil contamination via leaf mulch/compost?

Soil in the city I live in is quite often contaminated with nasty things like arsenic and lead. Levels are sometimes twice or more what's considered acceptable. For this reason, people usually ...
13
votes
2answers
849 views

Hexagonal bush?

I have seen the pictured bush today when hiking around Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. From a distance, hexagonal patterns are visible: Adjacent branches grow in an almost perfect 45° angle relative to ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I grow maple trees from seeds?

I have a mature maple tree in my yard. Every year it drops seeds which start growing in the most inconvenient of places, like my gutters. Next season I would like to actively cultivate these seeds and ...
10
votes
1answer
683 views

What's wrong with planting a tree deeper than the root flare, or mulching higher?

People tell you that when you plant a tree, you should plant the root flare level with the soil line. And when mulching, that you shouldn't pile the mulch up over the root flare. What harm can be ...
10
votes
2answers
532 views

What's the best way to renovate mature pear trees?

Of the descriptions about renovating mature fruit trees this seemed useful: Fedco Trees Tips for Renovating Old Apple Trees These images show trees that are fuller than the ones I am dealing with: ...
8
votes
1answer
8k views

Is it a good idea to build a paver patio near a large established tree?

I would like to build a paver patio next to a large tree that has a 3" wide root at ground level. I do not want to damage the roots of the tree, so it seems like my only option is to build a raised ...
8
votes
2answers
14k 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 ...
7
votes
2answers
3k views

What are the odds of getting a shea tree to grow in South Carolina, USA?

What are the odds of getting a Shea Tree to grow in South Carolina, USA? Temperatures here in SC range from mid 30s (occasionally around 40) Centigrade in the summer to -10 at the coldest days of the ...
7
votes
3answers
21k views

How can I get lemon trees to bear fruit?

I have a couple of lemon trees (small plants really) in my garden. But they seem to grow at an awfully slow pace.They are about 2 years old & about 3/4 ft in height. I have seen pictures of lemon ...
7
votes
2answers
4k views

How do I control fire ants in the mulch around my tree?

I live in Houston, TX, USA and fire ants are a nearly year long concern. I have had success treating mounds with Orthene as they appear. However, I had a Siberian Elm in my backyard that was ...
7
votes
3answers
502 views

How large a tree can be “bare-rooted” for planting?

Upon receiving an estimate for moving a 12" caliper maple with a crane, a client's landscape architect proposed looking into whether or not it would be possible to save money by bare-rooting the tree ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Maple plant that will not turn green?

I live in Ireland. I bought an Acer plant "deshojo" ,few years back . Now I have two issues with this plant. One is that it will give that nice pink/red color only for few months (April -june). The ...
6
votes
2answers
511 views

Part of fruit cocktail tree has died

I have a fruit cocktail tree that I planted on 1 June 2013, around 9 to 10 weeks ago, and one of the 3 grafted branches appears to have died. The tree originated from Dave Wilson Nursery. Here is an ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Which end is up when planting a mango seed?

I have a seed that has already germinated. I've had it in water for a day and it has already grown some in the water. One end has a slight purple color to it, the other one is long and white. Which ...