Red Maple Tree Rot

Asked November 9, 2016, 2:42 PM EST

I have a 23 year old red maple tree. About 15 years ago, one of it's limbs broke off, due to heavy winds.. I sealed it with pruning spray, and in time the surrounding bark healed. This year, the tree has developed a soft spot where the limb broke off years ago. I put my hand into this cavity and it is filled with mushy tree fibers. Is there anything I can do to save this beautiful tree? Should I clean out the mushy fibers, seal the wound and fill in the hole with a non toxic tar like material? If so, what would you recommend I use. Thank You, Ted R. King. See attached images

Washington County Minnesota red maple horticulture damaged trunk

1 Response

The affected trunk isn't viable in the long run and should be removed. We advise asking a certified arborist to assess the tree's health onsite and recommend a course of action. Its multiple stems compromise its stability so It may or may not be possible to save the rest of the tree and improve its form.

This information might be useful if you decide to hire an arborist:

How to hire a professional arborist to help care for your landscape trees
http://www.extension.umn.edu/garden/yard-garden/trees-shrubs/how-to-hire-a-professional-arborist/

Learn more here:
http://extension.unl.edu/statewide/buffalo/Heart%20Rot%20in%20Trees%20November%2015%202014.pdf

http://www.ipm.iastate.edu/ipm/hortnews/2007/6-27/wood_rot.html