My landscaping was caught in the San Diego Firestorm. The house survived but
the trunks of several Queen palms and Eucalyptus trees (all with a diameter
from 15" to 24") were charred. They will probably survive but they look very
unattractive with charred wood reaching up to 10 feet, especially right in
front of the entrance area.
State Farm Insurance will not pay for them because they may survive. They
consider any plant as surviving (and do not pay for) any plant that has even
the tiniest green bud on it, even it it's on the bottom of the trunk.
Is there any way of scraping or pressure washing the black charcoal from the
trunks? Any other remedy ? (short of painting them green :-)
By all standards known to me, a charred tree trunk is not generally
considered a thing of beauty. Depends on how you live and how much you
prefer green plants to charred plants. It so happens that I do care "what
the trunk of a fuking tree looks like".
No, it's not a thing of beauty. And it's also not something you can do
anything about without killing the tree. But, you'd probably rather do that
than look at it. Another option: You could move into the real world, where
it doesn't burn down each year.
Don't think this has not occurred to me. 2000 houses burned in 2003, 2000
houses burned in 2007. This is ridiculous! I don't need this in my old age.
Arizona, here we come. But, we got to make this old house presentable,
If you are staying, I think letting the trees alone to heal themselves
is the best option (consulting an arborist is even better) and I think
wrapping the wounds with tree wrap, or burlap, would not interfere with
the healing and would ease your aesthetic concerns.
On the other hand, if you want to sell soon, I think having healing
trees on the property would just serve to remind prospective buyers that
they are buying in a problem area, so in that case I would remove the
trees and plant replacements.
Walter R. wrote:
Its like scar tissue. The tree will recover and the scab fall off on
its own. Removing it will further stress the tree and kill it. Will
the insurance company still deny compensation then?
My suggestion is to wrap the trunks in green (or trunk) colored burlap
that will allow the trunk to breath and live.
What if I am a part time lumber jack wielding a chain saw as big as you?
Any how, your name fits. Barker, LOL! Nature has it's own way of
healing. That tree will be a reminder for the power of nature. Really
horticulture is my hobby. I have a 3 years formal training way back.
Trees are different. Ya been too the Redwoods, near your house?
A palm tree will boil inside. You will see the side affects. Given you
have Queen Palms. The heart-of-palm dies, in months you see the tree
It seriously froze in Las Vegas two years ago (?). Given, a bad
summer heat - my trees were stressed. Pending removal...
The trees are scorched to 10 feet. That's a ground fire, and normal in
many forests. Mature trees will survive a ground fire just fine; some
even like it.
The OP could call in an arborist. The arborist can do two things: one
is look at the trees and give a good estimate of whether they are likely
to survive or not. The other is paint the trunks with anti-fungal tree
wound paint, which comes in ... drum roll ... tree trunk colors. It will
not look natural but it may help the trees recover and it would be less
noticable than coal black.
The OP could also use a large steel wire brush to knock off some of the
carbon. Not all the carbon, only what is loose, and taking care not to
damage the remaining bark beneath the carbon.
I don't know shit about Palm trees as I live in the Frozen North, but as the
others have said I'd be more concerned about saving the trees than making
them look pretty. This will likely save you $s in the long run assuming they
are still viable.
Try reading this for a start:
Different tree, Swamp cabbage comes from a sabal palm. That is a
native Florida tree. Queen palms are weeds. (exotics) In fact, if you
don't pick up the seed pods you will have a yard full of these things.
I have a patch behind my house on the FPL right of way that is covered
with queen sprouts. I can send the guy some seedlings if he wants a
The bark of the queen will recover somewhat over several years but
trying to grind off the char will kill the tree.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.