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#562937 12/04/23 02:35 PM
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We're loaded with oaks of various kinds, and we're clearing out some of the agonal ones. Several have new healthy shoots out of the existing roots, and here's my question. Will that shoot be healthy, or should I just cut it down too and plant a new tree? Either way, we probably won't live long enough to see them at their full size. The last tree I cut down was right at 60 yo.

Thanks, Al


One of our larger dead oaks that my neighbor's cutting down.

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Hello.

Are these trees in a pasture.
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The shoot will be healthy, you just have to trim away all the other shoots that start to pop up and keep the biggest, straightest one.

Something killed the tree, but the root system stayed alive and is sending up a shoot to start feeding the roots again.


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I hope they don't have oak wilt in Texas. I know it is a major concern in Michigan. We have special precautions in place for moving oak firewood and for when (and when not!) to trim any oak branches or cut any oak especially red oak.

Once the fungus gets in the roots it spreads underground from tree to tree, pretty bad. It travels overland through a beetle that carries the fungus. To play it safe we really aren't supposed to make any cuts at all on a oak tree till it is cold enough to have no flying insects (Dec, Jan, Feb and maybe part of March)

In the state managed land they take your standard vibratory plow and go about 50 feet around the base of the oak trees and try to cut all the roots in a big circle and then do the same for all the adjacent trees that are affected to stop the underground spread. In some places they use excavators to dig trenches between sick and healthy trees to try to stop the spread.

If you do have to take an affected oak wilt tree down then they have to chip it, bring firewood to a spot where it can be covered completely down to the ground level and sealed so bugs can't get into the cut logs (this is how folks transport it to a new spot by transporting firewood), and then the stump has to be ground out immediately. If a stump has to remain it has to be painted with tree sealer paint as do the cut end of the logs.

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Azeteca, some are and some aren't. CC, no oak wilt here. This property has been in the family for over 100 years, and the trees are just wore out, limbs are slowly working their way down the trunks. Walnut caterpillars are a problem for pecan trees this year though.

Thanks Scott. I was pretty sure they would be ok, but I wanted to make sure before I put much effort in it. The white oaks, water and post, are the main issues. Our big red oaks are rock solid.


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We have Oak Wilt too. Most of the trees affected are in the Red Oak family, we were told that the white and black oak families aren't affected.


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Most of the "life" of a deciduous tree is in the roots. Unless the cause of the tree dying is a tree disease that can reside in the roots, then I would certainly try to re-grow the oak trees from a stump base. If the roots are healthy, and you prune back to only promote the best stem, then you should get phenomenal growth rates.

No great loss if you fail - it is easy to cut back a dying stem if you decide to finally terminate the tree.

There has been a deliberate practice (coppicing) in Europe for hundreds of years of fostering new growth from the stump and roots.

Wikipedia - Coppicing

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Originally Posted by esshup
We have Oak Wilt too. Most of the trees affected are in the Red Oak family, we were told that the white and black oak families aren't affected.
Great, like I wasn't having enough fun with the Emerald Ash Borer.


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Originally Posted by esshup
We have Oak Wilt too. Most of the trees affected are in the Red Oak family, we were told that the white and black oak families aren't affected.

In Central Texas we have Oak Wilt. It is impacting Red Oaks and Live Oaks too. When a tree gets it, its toast.


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Originally Posted by FishinRod
Most of the "life" of a deciduous tree is in the roots. Unless the cause of the tree dying is a tree disease that can reside in the roots, then I would certainly try to re-grow the oak trees from a stump base. If the roots are healthy, and you prune back to only promote the best stem, then you should get phenomenal growth rates.

No great loss if you fail - it is easy to cut back a dying stem if you decide to finally terminate the tree.

There has been a deliberate practice (coppicing) in Europe for hundreds of years of fostering new growth from the stump and roots.

Wikipedia - Coppicing

Thanks Rod, good info to know. I've got 4 bald cypress that beavers whacked off at the roots 2-3 years ago, and all of them now have multiple 3-4' shoots. I'm letting them grow until next spring before I pick the strongest and straightest shoot.


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Originally Posted by FireIsHot
I've got 4 bald cypress that beavers whacked off at the roots 2-3 years ago, and all of them now have multiple 3-4' shoots. I'm letting them grow until next spring before I pick the strongest and straightest shoot.

Have those beavers now gone to beaver heaven? (Or perhaps beaver hell, since they are whacking your good pond trees.)

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If you have a few special pond trees that you don't want to risk to beavers, then get some chicken wire and wrap the trunks..
















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FIH, at Ron's place near you we put cyclone fence around the trees when the beavers showed up. We used "T" posts and staked the fence a good 2'-3' away from the trunk of the trees. But then again these trees were 24" dia or so...


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Originally Posted by esshup
FIH, at Ron's place near you we put cyclone fence around the trees when the beavers showed up. We used "T" posts and staked the fence a good 2'-3' away from the trunk of the trees. But then again these trees were 24" dia or so...


Same here. I missed those because I had a 4 year gap between beavers showing up. All the newer trees have the T post and fence already. I did have to cut the chicken wire off 3 of the older trees, as they were a tad to tight, and I was afraid they'd girdle the trunks.

Rod, I've got no clue how many beavers, nutria, and otters I've whacked over the last decade. If there are water rat heavens, then they are there. I'm setting up 4 conibears and 3 racoon traps on my hatchery pond tomorrow.

Last edited by FireIsHot; 12/07/23 03:25 PM.

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If the shoots look healthy and are growing well, I'd say give 'em a chance. Oaks are pretty resilient, and those shoots might turn into sturdy trees.

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Al, you and Scott have seen my place that is butt deep in oaks. I’ve owned it for 40 or so years and the only oak mortality I’ve ever seen was from lightning and dozers. If I cut one for firewood, the stumps still keep sending out shoots. I consider them immortal.


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Dave, those Black Jack oaks you have in Bowie are gold. IIRC, they're fairly common in OK, but not around here.


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Just drilled a Siberian Elm tree at our farm to move a game camera.

Water/sap actually spouted from the hole! This is common during the spring and summer for these trees, which are also called "piss elms".

However, the sap should be in the roots now, since we have had multiple hard freezes.

I think the trees' "will to live" is possibly the reason. We have been unseasonably warm for about four weeks and have had an 11" snow and a 1.25" rain. I think the trees have been trying to pull in that moisture to recover from our 3-year drought. Very impressive survival skills! (Even though I hate these invasive elms. Hopefully our desirable trees are doing the same thing.)

P.S. Our creek has also started running again. It did not start running due to surface water flows. Instead, the pools began rising from below with the increase in the groundwater level. They have coalesced over the last few days and the creek is now flowing. I hope the ground moisture stays around for our trees to access for their spring growth next year.

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