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WeedWacker Kills Tree?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by pap4464, Oct 12, 2003.

  1. pap4464

    pap4464 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    Just wondering has anyone ever heard of killing a tree from excessive weedwacking. This particular customer that called has been with me two years and we cut twice a month. The tree company who will be replacing the tree stated the loss of bark could be the result of excessive weedwacking. The tree is 10'-12' tall and is rather mature. Anything is possible, but is this?
    Any feedback would be appreciated!
  2. HOMER

    HOMER LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,183

    The weed wacker will cause injury to the tree.......it's bark is like our skin......when the bark has been beaten off infection and disease can set up in the tree.........I advice anyone helping me never to hit the bark.
    That's a big no-no!
  3. ElephantNest

    ElephantNest LawnSite Bronze Member
    from La.
    Messages: 1,878

    Sure it's possible. Need to lower the RPM when near trees, bushes, etc. More than likely, it's from something else. But try telling that to the homeowner now that he's heard weedwhacking may be the culprit.
  4. Gene $immons

    Gene $immons LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,028

    Weed-eaters and lawn-mowers are the #1 killers of trees.

    I heard of a guy who was weedeating in a new city park and killed around 100 newly planted trees because he was weedeating close to the bark.

    The vascular bundles which supply the tree with water and nutrents (xylem & phloem) are located just beyond the outer bark. Its like cutting the throat when you use a weedeater too close.
  5. DennisF

    DennisF LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 1,381

    The bark protects the tree from invasion by insects and disease. If the bark was damaged near the ground it is possible that the tree fell victim to insects/disease depending on what kind of tree it is. Ash trees ( if that is the type ) are particularly susceptable to insects and any bark damage to them can be fatal. Oaks, Maples and Conifers are much hardier and can survive even with heavy damage to the bark. However if you feel that your trimming was the cause I would make amends with the customer and pay for the replacement. JMO.
  6. mottster

    mottster LawnSite Member
    Messages: 191

    Larger trees that have been around for several decades usually have fairly thick bark and is hard to damage them when you're just normally trimming. That doesn't mean you can go at it full throttle like it's a chunk of rebar. Sapplings and young trees take the biggest impact from doing that. We would rather have the customers complain that there's a little grass left then having them complain that their tree just died and we hae to replant it at n/c.
  7. lawnman_scott

    lawnman_scott LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,547

    Yes its possible. We did it once ourselves. The customer was very nice though and didnt complain at all. Cant hit the bark, well not alot anyway.
  8. NCSULandscaper

    NCSULandscaper Banned
    Messages: 1,557

    Most of the itme it dies due to the xylem canals(i believe thats the right one) gets cut which carries the sugars made in the leaves down to the roots for feeding. When the roots did not get the sugars it usually dies.
  9. mower_babe

    mower_babe LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 790

    it has a name, isn't it called "girdling"? I have seen it on an account that we just acquired this year - due to careless lco in the past.
  10. We do 4 U

    We do 4 U LawnSite Member
    Messages: 183

    I have seen it, around here it is called trimmer blight.

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