The Q&A Archives: Trees

Question: sunset maple. bark peeling. about fungas or bugs

Answer: Young maples are susceptible to sunscald during the winter, and this freeze damage leads to peeling the following season. The damaged bark can then allow entry for fungus or insects. Weed whacker damage can do the same, as can tree anchor ties left too long and too tight. Unfortunately once the bark is damaged there is little you can do to repair it except try to keep the tree growing vigorously by providing adequate fertility and watering deeply in times of drought in the hope that the tree will heal itself quickly. On an older tree, some scaling of the bark is normal and considered part of its characteristic features. If hunks or large sections are falling away, there may be a problem. I would suggest you consult with your county extension and/or with a professionally trained, certified arborist if you suspect that fungus or insects have invaded the damage, or if the tree is a large one that could become dangerously unsound, or if the tree is an important part of your landscape design. I'm sorry I can't be more specific about your tree's condition long distance.

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