|It is October and winter is almost upon us in Alberta. We went away for the weekend and returned to a broken limb on our crab apple tree.|
How do I go about repairing the broken limb as well as protecting it for the upcoming winter? Is there a special process with tree tar?
|Unlike humans, there's no way to repair a broken limb on a tree. Prune the broken limb back to its main source, the trunk if necessary. Use a sharp pruning saw and make a clean cut. Don't leave a "stub" with your cut, which allows entry for disease. Also, if cutting back to the trunk, don't cut absolutely flush with the trunk, but just outside a slightly raised area where the branch comes out, called a "collar." This specialized collar tissue is able to heal itself quickly, preventing disease and insect entry. |
Do not apply any type of tar, paint, etc. to the pruning cut. Although once recommended, research now shows that this interferes with the tree's ability to heal itself.