Tulip Tree Pruning - Knowledgebase Question

Question by drlynda6
April 24, 2010
I have a beautiful tulip tree that needs pruing however we can not afford it. There are branches dying up one side and it looks like the bark at the bottom of the tree is getting eaten up do you have any suggestions. We love our tree, How would you suggest we get rid of the dead branches without harming the tree. It looks like the previous owner took branches off with a saw.

Answer from NGA
April 24, 2010


Pruning is rather straightforward but my concern is the damage at the bottom of the tree. Decaying bark at soil level can indicate overly wet soils or perhaps some weed whacker damage. Once the bark is damaged, all kinds of disease pathogens and insects can enter, causing all kinds of problems. Dead branches usually are symptoms of root problems. Since yours is such a valuable tree, I'd suggest contacting a local arborist to assess the health of your tree and make recommendations based upon their findings. If you choose not to call a professional, you can prune out the dead branches with a tree saw. Take them back all the way to the trunk of the tree and make a flush cut. If you leave stubs, you can encourage insect and disease problems. Anything that is obviously dead can be cut from the tree without harming the tree. I hope your tree recovers soon.

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