I've staked the apple trees and several other trees using steel fence
posts and wire inside of rubber hose.
A few of the branches tend to rub the posts in strong wind, plus the
post tops are rather sharp, and pose a bit of hazard.
I got one of those kids foam pool toy things that looks like pipe
insulation, cut sections and slipped them over the posts.
Simply put your stakes are too tall... you're set up more for fencing
than staking. You need the shortest stakes possible driven into the
ground at approx. a 30 deg. inward angle towards the tree and on a
3'-4' radius from the tree, use three stakes only, 120 deg apart ...
then angle the wires downward to the stakes so they form an acute
angle where attached to the tree and they're attached to the stakes at
ground level... set the the stakes so their tops are about a foot
above ground, too close to ground level will present a tractor tire
hazard... abrasion problem solved. It's recommended that you use
wooden stakes rather than metal. Also, remember to remove the wires
and stakes by the second year, third year the latest, or the trees
will not root properly for survival from wind... newly planted trees
must be permitted to sway clear to the ground in order that they
properly root, do not stake too ridgedly, leave plenty of slack and
readjust for even more slack after the first year... only newly
planted (or diseased) trees need staking. If your trees are planted
very young than drive a single relatively thin and flexible bamboo
stake close (3") from the trunk and lash loosely in 2-3 places with
velcro tape... remove stake by the third year.
Here is an example of how I stake newly planted trees, if you look
carefully you will notice the wire is loose:
Here're the same trees three years later with staking removed, that
first is a little leaf linden btw, all doing well:
This is how I protect very young trees from deer (metal fence posts
with chicken wire), the first year there was a single bamboo stake.
That's a weeping copper beech, the one further back is a ginko
biloba... will be a few more years before they're safe from deer but
they don't need staking. Notice I leave a space to get the lawnmower
under the chicken wire:
Nice lookin' trees and property ya have.
As far as my staking them the way you show, that presents a serious
trip and injury hazard, which is a definite concern where we live.
Thanks for the reply, and I agree the way you do them is best, but it
just isn't an option where we live. And thanks for the recommendation
about slack.... didn't know that. At what point should I slacken the
wires? The trees have been in only a few weeks and are 7 ft apples. I
have them on a really short leash now.
I've no idea how that can be... I would think that rough ended tall
steel stakes with wire running clear straight across neck high is far
more hazardous than a loose wire set at a steep angle that's attached
to a wooden stake that not only can be rounded but also marked with
brightly hued fluorescent spray paint.
The guy wires should never be taut... loosen them so that at the point
of attachment the tree can move 6-8 inches in every direction. It's
perfectly normal for a tree to sway in the wind, that's what prevents
it from breaking. While the tree is still very young that movement is
what impels the tree to send out stabilizing roots. If you keep the
tree too ridgid it won't be stimulated to send out those roots and as
it becomes older it will no longer be capable of sending out
stabilizing roots, once a tree begins to form mature bark at it's base
it's already too late... those are often the trees that come down in a
wind and everyone gawks in amazement at how small the root ball is on
such a large tree that appears perfectly healthy.
Anyway 7' tall apple sapplings don't need stakes and guy wires...
that's big time overkill... it's hardly ever necessary to stake and
wire any tree so small a size... just the first year or two use a
single bamboo stake.
We provide supports for, and live with, folks that have physical and
mental disabilities. All the gardening and tree planting and such is
done here. If the potential for injury is there, I have to assume it
will happen and eliminate the possibility. Also have a grandson and a
big goofy dog that are below the height of the wires now, and sure as
hell, they would wrap themselves around them.
Ok. I'll remove the posts and put a bamboo in. Damn, sure looks a
strong wind could loosen the trees, but I'll take yer word for it.
Certainly eliminates tripping and clotheslining potential! ;-)
Thanks. Learned some good, useful things today.
Loosening is good, that will impel the tree to send out stabilizing
roots. Hopefuly you didn't pack the earth around the tree too
tightly, it should be back filled fairly loosely so the tree can
breathe... stomping in new plantings will ensure they will probably
die or at least take twice as long to recover from planting shock,
don't over water either or you will drown the tree, air needs to reach
the roots. And now that the tree is planted don't be running any
riding lawnmower within six foot or you will compact and shift the
soil, which will damage new roots, use a push mower only around trees,
and not just newly planted trees, for as long as the tree lives.. it's
especially important not to compact teh soil around fruit trees.
Bamboo is very strong, any wind powerful enough to break the bamboo
will certainly rip that tree apart regardless how it's supported.
Choose a bamboo pole about 1" dia. and long enough so when driven in
deeper than the bottom of the root ball it extends a few inches more
than the tree is tall so you can lash the top portion of the tree as
it grows, thats the weakest most vulnerable part in wind.
Talked to younger son today, and he said elder son had told him about
the tree staking. He had planted ten trees, all less than four feet,
and was removing his tiedowns.
Can you get the binary garden picture group? One of these days I am
going to dust off the software and put up a webpage, been a long time
since I did that.
I would remove the wire and a hose and use broad-beltlike material that will
allow the tree to sway without injuring the cambium zone such as wire and a
John A. Keslick, Jr.
Beware of so-called tree experts who do not understand tree biology.
Storms, fires, floods, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions keep reminding us
that we are not the boss.
Many tree problems are associated with the following:
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