What is happening to the bark?

Asked July 29, 2019, 4:18 PM EDT

This plum tree was planted by my father-in-law three years. Last July, it was beginning to be fruitful and we harvested many plums (about two poundsful). This year, the plum tree has not sprout any flowers nor fruit at all, and we noticed the bark is cracking/shedding. Is this normal? What can be the cause? Should I worry or the tree can heal by itself?

Kings County New York

1 Response

Thank you for your question. The two problems you address—trunk cracking and no fruit production—both have beginnings in weather conditions, particularly hard winters. Trees generally heal after trunk cracking, but only if no insects or pathogens (fungi, bacteria, etc.) take up residence. No fruit has several other causes, and I don’t have enough information to narrow them down. I suggest read this Cornell publication that follows, especially that starting on page 8: https://ecommons.cornell.edu/bitstream/handle/1813/67/Cornell_Guide_to_Growing_Fruit.pdf If you still can’t determine the problem(s), I suggest you contact your county Extension office: https://nyc.cce.cornell.edu/nyc-offices/ Good luck!