Maple tree bark problem

Asked September 9, 2020, 1:10 PM EDT

Is this normal for a maple tree? The Bark seems to be peeling/breaking off the tree. A major limb was lost to storm damage about a year and half ago above the bark damage. In the first pic you can see that fungus is growing off the slight inclined cleanup cut. We would like to preserve the tree if possible It is over 50 years old. The crown and branches of the top of the tree appear very healthy (50 ft tall???) I have additional pics if needed.

Jackson County Michigan

3 Responses

Splitting/peeling bark on maple trees is not normal. A single vertical frost crack is not uncommon, but the bark is peeling all around the tree. There is a fungus on the cut portion of the tree with a fungus growing on it. I can't be certain what fungus it is but, a fungus decays heartwood and sapwood. Infections occur through open wounds, and decay is most extreme when wounds are large. Your maple tree is under extreme stress and is in decline.

Is there anything we can do to lower the stress? Recut the top cut at steeper angle? Fungicides? Spray wounds with a sealant? Tree fertilizer? Suggestions?

I recommend you consult with a certified arborist. They will be able to conduct an on site assessment of the entire tree, and the location it's growing in to determine a course of action. You will be able to locate an arborist by zip code at www.treesaregood.org