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My beloved apple tree is in danger - some friendly advice needed!

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MeadowCarmel blog photos
Joined: 6/19/2008
Posts: 6
Posted: Jun/19/2008 6:55 AM PST

Hello -

A beautiful apple tree growing on the edge of my back garden, which borders directly onto meadows (I really love this tree!) has had one of its large roots snap. We had strong winds last night, perhaps it was that. I can't help wondering if the team who maintain the meadows and who recently mowed that patch may have tugged it out - it seems to have snapped in a very dramatic way.
(Hmm a bit of detective work needed)

The problem is, of course, that the tree may now be unstable in the direction of my and my neighbour's house (the root snapped on the side opposite to the house) - actually, the bedroom windows. I will of course be bringing this to my neighbour's attention and I will have to chop the tree down (horrific thought) if they would prefer that.

I think it's a real tragedy when any tree has to be chopped down, (this one will be like losing a friend!! - ok well I hope you know what I mean) and would like to do everything I can to save it and make it safe. It's a mature, large apple tree which must've been there almost as long as the house.

I'll be doing research on this anyway. But I'd be so interested to know if anyone's had experience of apple trees becoming unstable, and any ideas, so that I can save this tree!

Thank you!!


tnjtrees photos
Joined: 6/07/2008
Location: Heyburn Idaho
Posts: 77
Posted: Jun/20/2008 6:10 PM PST

Meadow carmel-
First off take a deep breath and relax. Your apple tree should be just fine. The root system on a tree that size should be roughly the size of the crown up above. So you should have plenty of roots to save it. However any time a root or limb breaks like this one has, it can stress the tree. Therefore, the root should be removed. Using a spade shovel dig gently back along the root, until you locate either the break in the root, or the first joining root(or branch off of the damaged root). Gently saw the damaged root off at one of these areas. If it would make you feel beter you can spray pruning sealer on the cut root, however it wont hurt it just to cover the cut with dirt. If you feel the situation is more severe, please contact a certified arborist in your area.
From what I can see in the picture I really feal you have nothing to stress over, except maybe who or what would have done this. If it were me I would more than likely tend to the root then act as if I never noticed it. So as if a neighbor had done it some what purposely, they would get no satisfaction in seeing me upset over the issue. Best of luck with it and please reply back later and let us know how the tree does.
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