Can my 2 year old black plum tree be saved? My hubby got "trim-happy" and accidentally nipped the base of our young plum tree that stripped-off a 1.5 inch wide and 4 inch long section of bark near the base of the tree. Overnight it was very windy and we think the high winds contributed to stripping the bark off almost all the rest of the way around the tree. The trunk is about 1.5 inches wide. I've pampered it since we planted it over a year ago, and it produced an amazing little crop of plums a few weeks ago, but am very concerned that we may lose it now from the damage. I'm attaching a couple photos. Is my baby plum tree save-able? And if so, what do you recommend?
By the way, we did not plant too deep, and there is root flair that just can't be seen from the weeds and grass that have grown up around it this past spring. It happened so suddenly, and we're cleaning it up and will add a wide ring of fresh mulch.
We live in Dallas, but this is on a property we own in Eustace (an hour SE of Dallas). We're down there twice a week. We deep water the tree once a week depending on how often it rains, and twice a week during the high heat with little or no rain.
By the way, we also have another plum and 2 peach trees, all doing well (but this black plum is my favorite!). All 4 trees are in a row and 15 ft apart from one another. Each tree has a trench to aid in the deep watering, but just not visible in the photos.
File comment: Back of tree with next day high wind bark stripping damage.
PlumTreeDamage-Back.jpg [ 78.65 KiB | Viewed 226 times ]
File comment: Front of tree with initial stripped bark.
PlumTreeDamage-Front.jpg [ 79.3 KiB | Viewed 226 times ]
Do the sick tree treatment and don't cover the area with anything, that would create an environment when bugs could get in. If it isn't completely girdled the tree might make it. The cambium layer under the existing bark is doing all of the work to send food up to the tree, so fingers crossed it is robust and the tree will grow and bark will fill in around the wound as it gets bigger.
Thanks so much for the excellent advice. I had thought about doing the Sick Tree Treatment, but wondered if there was more I should do.
I just read through the Sick Tree Treatment instructions. A couple questions: Is there a Sick Tree Treatment or an Organic Amendment Mix (zeolite, green sand, lava sand, cornmeal & molasses) already available for purchase? Or do I need to purchase each separately and mix it myself?
Also, I have been feeding the trees with Garrett Juice and attribute that to having such healthy trees up to now.
We originally planned to pull the grass/weeds by hand to clear around the trunks but my hubby thought the trimmer would help and just got careless. When he sheepishly told me what happened, I threw a "what the hell..." tantrum. Believe me, he won't ever go near those trees with a trimmer again.
I had thought about the goop, but didn't know if it applied in this case. Will try it, though.
Don't think I'll use the weed killer, but just the amendments. I want to keep the soil as natural and healthy as possible and give the tree a chance to heal, hopefully. I sure don't mind pulling the grass/weeds by hand. We'll clear the areas around the root flairs and put a good mulch down around it.
I am planning to try that Avenger myself, but in places where I won't get it too close to tender stuff. Along edges of rock walls, cracks in the driveway, etc. As I see how it works I'll try it in other areas.
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