Heading off Heartbreak

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt can be heartbreaking to purchase, plant and nurture landscape trees only to see them severely damaged by mice, deer, rabbits and winter sunlight.  Every spring, many people call or stop by the nursery wanting to know what to do about tender tree bark that has been eaten, torn by deer antlers, or damaged by sunlight bouncing off winter snowbanks.  In many cases, it is simply too late.

The good news is that if you have young trees with bark that is undamaged, it is easy and inexpensive to protect them.  In late summer / early fall, simply apply a white plastic tree wrap over the trunk from ground level to a height of 3 to 4 feet.  I prefer 4 feet whenever possible.  Be sure to remove this plastic wrap in the spring once the grass greens up nicely.  It is important to use a white wrap to avoid temperature fluctuations.  Leaving tree wraps in place throughout the growing season is an invitation to damage from insects, bacteria and fungus.  Reinstall again as fall approaches.  Repeat until the trees are 5”-6” in diameter.

Tree wraps are inexpensive and they will last several years. They are available in several different styles / sizes which makes it easy to find one that best fits your tree.