Hi, I have an American Elm which I understand to be an endangered
tree due to Dutch Elm Disease. It needs to be pruned? as branches are
leaning onto my roof. I am thinking that it is probably best to prune
as little as possible but several people have suggested pruning much
more because it will grow. It appears that I need a professional to
do this job. The pruning will be done 70+ ft high. What should I be
looking for in the pruner? Are there licenses or professional
affiliations? Also are there specific questions to ask or best
timetable to follow? I would not be happy with myself if my actions
caused the demise of this tree.
Dutch Elm Disease may not be a problem in your area. Check with your local
county extension office to see how prolific DED is in your area.
DED is caused a fungus carried by beetles which bore into the trunk, usually
through wounds caused by wind damage or pruning. Diseased and/or dying
branches are also a good source of beetle entry. Identify dying/dead
branches with spray paint, then prune when the tree is dormant and beetles
are not active. Immediately burn, chip, or bury all pruned wood. Do NOT
save it for firewood.
My 100 year old elm died this year. Very very sad. We got innoculation
shots for it last year but apparently, when the previous owner died, the
shots lapsed for two years and that's all it took to get Dutch Elm disease.
And doesn't Dutch elm disease take quite a number of years to kill
trees? I recall trees slowly dying over many years here in NJ when I
was a kid. It seems unlikely to me that missing injections from a
couple years ago could lead to the total demise of the tree that
I don't really know.
Our tree sprouted leaves this spring and the arborist came in May and said
it was dying. We were surprised to hear that since it looked fine to us. A
month later, all the leaves fell off and the last hurricane nearly brought
it down...lots of bare branches fell off.
In the next couple of weeks, we will bring it down for good.
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