I have a large Hickory tree about 50 ft. tall and bigger round than I can put...

Asked September 30, 2013, 9:19 AM EDT

I have a large Hickory tree about 50 ft. tall and bigger round than I can put my arms twice. There is a fungus growing at the base. It has been struck by lightening which shows in two streaks. The lower one leaving the bark pulled back and the tree healing underneath. The tree is in good condition otherwise with a green canopy. This is probably year two or more for the fungus growth.

Howard County Maryland

1 Response

Thank you for the additional photo. Unfortunately, we were hoping to see the base of the trunk where the fungus is apparently located. If it is a shelf fungus, it is usually an indication that there is considerable rot in the heartwood. Since the tree's vascular system is immediately under the bark and the heartwood is not living and is actually dead wood that is only there to hold up the tree, if the bark becomes compromised so that water can penetrate the heartwood, it will rot and the integrity of the tree can be severely weakened. The greater danger is that the tree could topple in a wind storm.
It may be appropriate for you to have a certified arborist examine your tree and assess the tree's integrity. You can find a tree care service and certified arborists at the following site: www.treesaregood.org This is the site of the International Society of Arboriculture, the certifying agency.