To reiterate what we said in the first part of this blog series, the bark of a tree is similar to the skin on our bodies. Its purpose it to protect the delicate phloem layer which provides nutrients and water to the giant organism.
All kinds of tree bark damage must have their wound repaired, no matter how the tree was damaged. For example, if you notice that the tree has simply suffered a scratch in the bark, use plain soap and water to wash out the wound and remove any disease ridden pathogens inside which may further injure the tree. This is similar to how we would clean up a child’s scratched knee. Use warm water directly after to remove any trace of the soaps, then leave it to heal in the open air without a sealant. This is where an adult figure would tell a child their wound will heal better without a plaster, and it is true for the trees too.
Trees which have suffered more serious injuries, such as removal of bark can potentially have it placed back. For example, if you come across a tree like the one mentioned above, gather up as much of the tree bark as you can and attach it back onto the tree with strong tape, ensuring that it is facing the right direction. This is important as the phloem is only able to transport nutrients in one direction and replacing the bark onto the tree with tape the wrong way will not help the tree survive.
Sometimes animals like squirrel will come along and literally eat the bark of a tree, which means that it cannot be replaced like the method shown above. If you come across a tree like this, you should clean the wound thoroughly to ensure that it can heal. Wounds which are jagged and not straight cut will prevent the tree from transporting nutrients, so it is essential that the wound is cleaned and adequately taken care off. If the wound is particularly jagged, use the top and bottom of the cut as a guide and draw an oval around the wound. Remove the tree bark and let it air dry. This will allow the tree to continue transporting nutrients without the jagged cuts preventing it. Do not use a sealant on the open wound.
Here at Ashley Tree Services, we are the experts when it comes the all things tree and safety related which is why we consider ourselves as ones of the best tree surgeons Manchester has to offer. Get in contact today for more information and make sure to check out the range of services we offer!