The Q&A Archives: Woodpeckers

Question: What can be done to keep a woodpecker out of a tree? It is causing damage to my tree. Also my crape mytrle has some freeze damage form the last cold spell. What can I do to help it?

Answer: Woodpeckers are sometimes looking for insects and sometimes, especially in spring, they peck on a tree to make a noise so they can attract a mate. The bigger the tree, the louder the noise..... You may have to tie a barrier around the tree where the woodpecker is making holes so he'll stop. I've used hardware cloth, kept about 2 inches from the bark with wooden spacers and then just used tie wraps to hold it in place. When the woodpecker finally stops visiting you can remove the barrier. Crape myrtles bloom on new growth and pruning encourages new growth so I'd prune off the damage. By summertime your tree will look lush and full again. Enjoy!

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