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j0nd03

dun dun dun another one bites the dust...

j0nd03
12 years ago

Well we picked up on a good .8" of much needed rain last night. Unfortunately, the weather gods demanded a sacrifice so I gave up another Autumn Blaze maple. May she rest in peace!

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By jp_42_82 at 2011-10-18

Original storm damage AB actually held up a little better and is still somewhat intact. The split has grown larger thought.

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By jp_42_82 at 2011-10-18

Here is a link that might be useful: Original thread is here

Comments (58)

  • mackel_in_dfw
    12 years ago

    I wouldn't feel at all comfortable with the way that tree was planted. The root flare should be completely visible, and maybe twice the diameter of the trunk. And screw aesthetics, there should be branches growing out of the trunk almost to the ground.

    If you're paying that kind of money for the future...That is what develops a stout trunk in the beginning...planted high with branches to the ground...my plant budget wiped me out two years ago...I paid no more than fifteen dollars a tree this year...but I do have a maple and it's on a tear.. put up four feet in record drought...but it's not the one you like...Just my two pennies..

    "Mackel" in the Grove

  • Iris GW
    12 years ago

    Oh, how sad! I am so sorry for your loss. But I am excited about your new opportunities.

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  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Mackel, what kind of maple? Also, around here, all trees sold in pots and bnb are branchless up to around 3-4' I have seen some small oaks branched low but that is about it. IMO branches should remain low and the homeowner should do the pruning themselves. I would like lower branches on just about all of my trees but they are sold branchless as I described.

    Esh, it will get better, I mean it has to right?

    I lost another OG overnight. Leaves were crispy when I got home. It was hanging in there as of this weekend.

    And another note for the storm damage - I had my sons small pool filled about 1/4 full of mulch. Didn't notice this morning, but it had blown over and the mulch was gone - vanished! So yeah, the wind must have been pretty strong.

    John

  • mackel_in_dfw
    12 years ago

    Metro Maple's Fire Dragon.

  • Cher
    12 years ago

    This is just plain sad. I can't even imagine losing all those trees and wanting to plant again. Hopefully you get a lot better luck on your new purchases.
    Cher

  • karinl
    12 years ago

    I don't like those trees that much so I'm not going to offer condolences :-) I'm with the person upthread who said "an opportunity to diversify!"

    I don't think I've ever paid more than $60 or so for a tree, and I get them as small as I can. I have had some very impressive growth rates out of trees purchased as small as 1 gallon. And if it were a maple that seeds prolifically (not sure if a sugar maple does?), I'd try to get a seedling from someone who has a mature tree.

    Being very familiar with the kind of marital standoff you are in, I would suggest you do whatever you have to do to get your small trees. I know - how about you do both if there is no other way to settle the divergence of opinion? Get the $250 replacements, and also get a few little ones that you put in the ground in other places (lest they get damaged when the $250 models topple). Then NEXT time you have failures, (hopefully) you will have evidence that small trees last better. Not to mention that you'll still have trees.

    Karin L

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Karin I actually am collecting sugar maple seed currently :) I also am going to dig up two small 3 footers growing behind my father in laws shed and transplant them at the house.

    I got GREAT news just now. My source just called back and the trees are 2" caliper BnB to be dug first of Nov for only $140 each! I am stoked!

  • arktrees
    12 years ago

    Congratulation John. If they end up looking like the Autumn Spendor being planted in the local botanical garden, then they will be gorgeous. Those planted in the botanical garden seem to grow well after establishment as well, at least they do in a moderately fertilized lawn they have set up for events. Looking forward to seeing your trees. (HINT HINT HINT)

    Arktrees

  • ghostlyvision
    12 years ago

    Yay John! Now my tears of sorrow for you can turn to those of joy. lol

    The very best of luck with the sugar maple seeds (my eyes are turning green) and your new scores, pics and more pics when you get the new ones in the ground.

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    There will be pics a plenty when they come in ;)

    Hopefully in a couple of years I will be able to post comparison pics of the 2 caddo ecotype cultivars 'John Pair' and 'Autumn Splendor' and two acer saccharum cultivars 'Hiawatha/Oregon Trail' and 'Commemoration' if all goes according to plan and they don't snap in half during storms lol

    John

  • lou_spicewood_tx
    12 years ago

    Mackel,

    That's a nice growth for your Fire Dragon tree. How long have you had it?

  • terrene
    12 years ago

    Oh dear, sorry about your poor trees!

    To help prevent that problem in the future, perhaps you should have Ken come down and paint your trees for you. ;)

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    LOL so true! A little paint and none of this would have ever happened :-(

  • ghostlyvision
    12 years ago

    LOL!

  • brandon7 TN_zone7
    12 years ago

    Yep, the watered down white paint can even lessen the chances for some types of borer damage. I think Ken should paint all his conifers with it, if for no other reason, just to give his landscape a little of that redneck look. LOL

  • mackel_in_dfw
    12 years ago

    Hi Lou, this was the second year in ground for the shantung maple. It is planted on the west side of our house, but the root area is in shade, and the tree has nowhere to go but straight up between two houses. I used deep and infrequent watering, usually ten to fourteen days apart during the drought. It's a rock star. I want to know about italian stone pine, Lou, if you know anybody who is growing one in our area. Thanks.

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Brandon, hilarious mental picture, thanks

  • lou_spicewood_tx
    12 years ago

    Hi Mackel, that's still a pretty good growth. Maybe you have better soil than I do. Just have to be smart about pruning because they want to develop thick and long lower branches early on. It's terrifying how fast the lower branches can get thick if you do nothing for a few years.

    About Italian Stone Pine... it was xmas tree with severely root bound that I planted and my dog killed it afterward. That was 4 years ago. I haven't really found anyone selling one that is not a xmas tree. I may get some seeds and grow them for the fun of it though. A montezuma cypress (mexican version of american bald cypress) is growing in that spot now and is looking great. I often hear from Howard Garrett and Neil Sperry that Italian Stone Pine is probably best pine tree for rocky alkaline soil in Dallas-FT area.

  • wilsocn
    12 years ago

    Well this will be of no help at all but I wanted to say that I love your mulching job around the tree and the way you laid the stones.

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Well thanks! The stones are basically powerwheels road blocks for my son and I think are at least somewhat decorative. As you can see, just a month ago the stones were end to end in a circle. I didn't like a dry zone all the way around the tree so I rolled each block end over end 1 complete cycle straight out then filled in all the extra space with mulch. I gained 2 feet in diameter of the mulch ring and by doing this provided quite a bit more area to be mulched. Turned out better than I thought it would ;)

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    :*(

    {{gwi:450452}}
    By jp_42_82 at 2011-10-23

  • lkz5ia
    12 years ago

    nice fall color

  • Iris GW
    12 years ago

    Oh my gosh! That is good color ....

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    The other 3 intact AB are also putting on a vibrant show atm. The tree in the pic is even brighter now than when I took that pic last week. As Ark suggested, a nice splash of orange from the Autumn Splendor's should make a fine addition to the reds from the AB maples.

  • ghostlyvision
    12 years ago

    That poor, beautiful tree. :(

  • ilovemytrees
    12 years ago

    Regular supplemental watering, staking the trees to a pole with simple tree tape for the 2-3 year establishing period, to give the roots a chance to take hold before letting the tree loose to those winds, and finally tree wrap on the trunks would have saved every one of these trees. People need to be proactive with their investments in their trees.

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Tree wrap would have saved them, no doubt. I have already stated this. I was ignorant of tree wrapping because I was uninformed. I know now and have already purchased wrap for this winter. Not all trees need wrap, but these maples have soft outer tissue in their bark that, say, if they were Swamp White Oak of the same size and caliper may have suffered no injury under the same conditions.

    I did stake for the first year. Staking an additional 2-3 years might have helped in this particular storm, but the frost crack injury would have created a weakness that would have lingered post-staking and most likely would have broke during a storm after the stakes were removed or created wound that would cause the trunk to be unsightly for a period of time while making the tree more susceptible to disease making replacement trees even further behind in growth/establishment.

    I did regular supplemental watering last year and this year. These trees are rooted in very well. I tried to dig one up this weekend. Roots extend to the edge of the mulch.

    Thanks for the thoughtful encouraging words.

    John

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Well, we have had weekly rain for a month now. Every time my trees were to be dug it poured and the digging had to be put off another week.

    Anyways, the trees don't appear to have ever been pruned. These were also my first B&B, which was pretty cool. I did not remove all the burlap, but cut huge holes up, down and around the entire rootball masses exposing most of them. I also did completely remove the burlap the top two inches or so below the top of the balls. I did end up removing around 5-7" of soil to get down to the flare. It was nice that these were just dug last week, so all the dirt above the flare was not filled with dense feeder roots. They are staked and vertical. We are getting some nice soaking rains today that should continue through tomorrow and maybe Monday. Also planted 8 other smaller trees after I finished with these. Lastly much thanks to the wife for helping out ;-)

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    By jp_42_82 at 2011-12-03

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    By jp_42_82 at 2011-12-03

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    By jp_42_82 at 2011-12-03

    I did find after unwrapping one tree from transport, two holes apparently housing a few ants. The ants came out as soon as I took the wrapping off.

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    By jp_42_82 at 2011-12-03

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    By jp_42_82 at 2011-12-03

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Oh, forgot to mention they are both Acer saccharum 'Autumn Splendor' like discussed previously

  • Toronado3800 Zone 6 St Louis
    12 years ago

    That had to be quite the undertaking! Did ya have any help?

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    My wife helped me unload them off the trailer and helped hold the rootball so I could hack at the burlap. My 2 year old son also helped by grabbing random tools I wasn't currently using and sticking them in the hole(s) lol He also cheered us on while we pulled the tree down and off the trailer. He got a kick out of that...

    After planting a 20'+ hickory a couple weeks ago with a larger rootball clod, these maples were not bad at all. Probably around 45 minutes per tree.

    Still raining outside and by dawns first light they remain straight and true!

  • ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5
    12 years ago

    hey

    those stakes are fine for winter.. but once that tree is leafed out. i doubt there is enough steal there to hold the sail ...

    that root mass on the dead one.. pop quiz ... what are your observations on what occurred.. why did it keep falling over???

    i used to have problems with the kids.. once i dug the hole.. i could not keep them out of it.. to plant the tree ...

    i had to start by digging them a hole to play in.. so i could work in the other ...

    did you ever paint the living room puke orange???

    nice mulch ring size ..

    good work on the root flare exposure

    there was something else.. but my mind wanders

    ken

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Hey Ken. Thanks for the input. I tried reusing the stakes and wire I used on my 10-12 footers this past year. I agree, the staking will be insufficient once it leafs out. For now, I have two stakes west of the tree on a 45* tangent to a line straight through the tree from west to east (the directions both trees broke) and one stake due east of the tree.. On the previous one that leaned, it was planted in leafless in fall and the following year, the wind out of the west moved the rootball. I staked it with 3 small stakes driven almost completely into the ground and used rope to anchor the tree to the stakes. After 3 months the tree was very well rooted in and did not move after I removed the stakes. Do you think I should add more stakes, or increase the thickness of wire?

    The little one entertains me to no end. I love it that he tries to help. Occasionally, he actually fetches what I ask when I am working!

    After the beating my Sooners took last night, puke orange is the last thing I want to see! Her first words after seeing them on the trailer were "I thought they would be taller..." but she likes them or at least she said she did. The AB maples that broke are a good 10' taller than these sugars. At least these appear as if they will be somewhat filled in with regards to the canopy.

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    I feel I should add both trees had roots about 2' beyond the mulch ring shown. And the remaining soil/root mixture through out was very dense in roots. Some of the ones I had to prune were probably .5" think already so I think the way I was watering them was helping the roots grow out of the site. Such a shame. I am halfway contemplating digging a couple of holes out by the pond, adding some serious hardware to the maples, and plopping them in... they are still very much alive.

  • abciximab
    12 years ago

    Looks great! B&B is the way to go. Root flare are always too deep as you discovered. Do you mind sharing where you purchased these trees?

  • arktrees
    12 years ago

    Those are some good looking trees IMHO. Looking at the central leader, it looks as those those trees have been repeatedly pruned to increase branching. That IMHO is a good thing. More leaves = more potential root growth as long as you can keep them from leaf burning in summer, but planting this time of year should help that ALLOT. Don't think you will have any problems from that unless there is a repeat of last year. As for your wife and the size of the trees, look closely, and it appears they were growing a couple feet per year. The Sugar Maples that I think are Autumn Splendor at our Botanical garden that are planted in a lawn area (i.e. fertilizer), have grown as much as 3 feet per year. So with good soil, they should do well.

    I do have one question though. In picture #2, it appears that the tree is located very near to or in the drainage pathway, so that water it channeled down onto/very near this tree. But this can be very hard to tell from pictures. If so, it might need to be moved unless is drains VERY quickly, and the soil is not at all soggy by the next day after a heavy rain like you are getting now. Looking at the grasses etc., it appears it is a bit greener along the "channelized area" as if the soil conditions are somewhat different there. However the species do not appear to significantly change, so I'm probable barking up a tree with nothing in it. Just thought I better ask, and with the current heavy rain, it's a perfect time to access.

    Side note. Watched the Sooner's take it hard last night. FWIW, I was concerned that I would hate our Commemoration Sugar Maple because the patent application described a predominate color as "Burnt Orange" bringing thoughts of Burnt Orange as in Texas Longhorn Burnt Orange, and well...... that's just not going to cut it!!! Also late summer/early fall we were looking at laminate flooring when I ran across something that I thought worth looking at more closely, until I saw the name "Auburn Oak" (think Auburn University). All I keyed on was "Auburn", as which point my very strong immediate emotional non-thinking reaction was "AHHH HE11 NO!!!!". Needless to say, it go no more consideration. LOL

    Arktrees

  • whaas_5a
    12 years ago

    Nice! b&b is alot of work but gives you instant viola.

    I didn't put any stakes on mine and my tree was double the size. Didn't move an inch. Somewhat surprising since it was planting higher than I wanted. Planted the darn thing myself, just a brutal experience.

    I love this picture because I talked my neighbor into letting me cut that nasty poplar tree down that was near the lot line.

    {{gwi:357763}}

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    What I meant by not pruned was the branches do not look like they were pruned with resulting Y form branches taking over recently. There are a couple of places this happened, but there were no dead twig stumps like I usually see and no evidence of a previous stub healing over. They were definitely pruned down low but that appears to have taken place quite a while ago, most likely around the time the branches were pruned because the trunks also don't show signs of being pruned recently.

    Very astute observation, Ark. Yes, there is a ditch that runs behind the house. I have not done the final winter ditch cleanup. When the ditch overflows, water does come down by the tree but as soon as the water stops flowing that area drains like the rest of the yard because it gently slopes to another low area. When the pond will be dug sometime this winter, the ditch behind the house will be widened and will act as a the water supply to fill the pond up. The area of concern does flood maybe 4-5 times a year mostly in winter. Last spring, it stayed flooded off an on for a month and a half, but the water never touched the mulch ring. Would the flooding be a concern for the a. saccharum rootstock? I think the area of root zone flooded even when the tree is very large would be less than 25%.

    Here are some pics from today, less than 24 hrs from the pics above.

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    By jp_42_82 at 2011-12-04

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    By jp_42_82 at 2011-12-04

    Nice story about the flooring lol I do the same thing when I hear people are from Texas. First question is always, "You are not a Longhorn fan, are you?"

    Whaas, that is picture perfect form on that sugar. You are a planting machine, dude! How on earth did you do that alone??? Is that the one you planted high on purpose and accidentally planted 4-5" too high? How did it do this year?

    I have to stake mine. It is in a very windy (for some very strange reason) part of the yard. I have 8 acres and the only wind damage was those two broke maples and a post oak close to them (obvious is wide shot #1 in this post) that had the top 15' blown off in a storm when we first moved.

  • ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5
    12 years ago

    first.. i take back a big part of my wife kidding.. if she actually got out there and helped with it all .. part of my problem with large stock.. is lack of assistance ...and if she helped.. and doesnt mind the cost.. go with the flow ...

    second ... the lesson on the previous plant that spent its life rocking back and forth .... is that it looks like it still is the same shape as the pot it came in.. with very little new root growth to support that rather large tree ... lets hope that a BB will work out better ...

    i dont know what to tell you about the staking.. at a min.. i think you need some T bars ... at link.. two top pics ... basically just a much heavier version of what you have ...

    ken

    Here is a link that might be useful: link

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    The rootball is deceiving. There were many, many roots extending from the master ball into the surrounding soil. I just chopped straight down with my shovel around the original potted rootball because I knew the roots beyond the ball would be small enough to sever and I wanted to do as little excavating as necessary to get it out. The roots went out and down all around both rootballs. It doesn't show up in the pics obviously, but they were rooted in very well.

    Basically what I have are T bars that missed a few workouts ;-) I do have a couple around the house and could get some easy enough from the hardware store. I will see how it does after leaf out and maybe add an additional stake or two and play it by ear. The stakes shown are driven into the ground around 8".

  • arktrees
    12 years ago

    John, I have to say that I am a bit concerned with that much water being that close. The Acer saccharum rootstock will not like 'wet feet' at all. My concern is that the water does not drain away just under the surface. So while the flow may never make it to the root ball, it may very well saturate the ground 3-4 inches down and remains that way for days longer. That would not be a good circumstance for a Sugar Maple, and one that is just planted with reduced root mass it could be much worse. Now everything depends on how ell it drains. I have clay, and it would be VERY bad. But your soil may drain much better and not be a problem. It just depends on the soil. The fact that you have a Eastern Red Cedar nearby being hit by the same flow, supports that the soil will drain quickly, but only you can answer that for sure. Couple of things you can do is raise the rootball 5-6 inches, but that would require replanting. Also you could go out to the lowest point of the swale (the low spot in the channel) and dig a small trench say 3-4 inches wide and 6-10 inches deep. Ideal being is you provide a lower concentrated channel so that the excess water can drain away more quickly after the rain stops. Kinda like a 'French Drain' but with no cover over the top. A narrow channel such as that is easily ignored and would help drain the excess away more quickly. JMHO.

    BTW, neglected to say the holes on the one tree look like what I got on our Fall Fiesta after last winter. Small area of bark damage probable from sun crack/scald. Should heal up quick and not cause problems.

    Arktrees

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    I'll keep an eye out to see if it shows more stress than the other one. Of the 5 AB planted, the two in the back put on the most growth this year. Don't know if that relates to the back 2 getting more runoff or not. I know more moisture would benefit that particular tree.

    It would be a project for sure, but I could swap the AB on the side of the house for that sugar maple. The AB on the side is on a slope that never gets close to standing water. It has the best form of any tree I have planted/had planted in my yard. It might be something to consider after seeing how everything performs next year. I would have to come up with a better way to remove the AB than what I did with the two broken ones. I cut the roots with a shovel, hooked a chain up to them and towed them out with my truck. Tore the heck out of the tree trunks but it worked without problem. It was, good or bad, the manliest thing I have done all year. What a testosterone rush!

    After the ditch in the back is widened and the flow capacity increased, I would think the runoff would be greatly reduced as most of what flows there is runoff from the ditch.

    The flow has now stopped and there is very little standing water on top now. Our ground is just so saturated because of all the rain the past month.

  • arktrees
    12 years ago

    Ok, I think I may have mis-understood. If this only happens occasionally during heavy rain, and is overflow from the ditch, and not the primary drainage, then it will probable be fine. Again, that Cedar says it would probable be fine. Cedar certainly doesn't like very wet soil, and I would think if it can handle the water, then the Sugar Maple can as well. Also, assuming the leafs out in the spring, then it will likely be fine. Again, the grasses/plants don't look to be appreciable different, which you would see if there is too much saturation. Everything has to deal with saturated soil from time to time, so there has to be some tolerance, and in the higher snowfall areas, when the snow melts, they are going to very saturated for a couple weeks. Lastly, from some of the pictures you have taken, your soil actually looks fairly sandy. I'm probable just being paranoid from dealing with clay soil.

    Arktrees

  • whaas_5a
    12 years ago

    jon, that is a nice plot of land. The gentle slopes give if character. You have SO much potential to grow into and I am very jealous. Don't forget a few blue and golden conifers for the sloped areas! Will be a standout as you progress.

    I've planted so many b&b plants I got it down to a science. My size makes it a bit easier too!

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    My picea pungens experiment did not go so well this year. Planted two globosa's early this spring and the heat and drought (I watered regularly and mulched) killed one outright and took about 30-40% of the others needles. I did plant a species p pungens two days ago. I am going to return the dead globosa to HD in the spring and get a refund/exchange and try again.

    Any ideas for a heat tolerant yellow conifer? I would really like to try Ogon somewhere...

    Another problem I have is it is so very open nearly everywhere I want to plant is full almost all day sun.

  • whaas_5a
    12 years ago

    Pinus densiflora and Pinus mugo have a quite few golden cultivars. I'm not well versed with your area so it might be hard to suggest.

    Mexican White Pine might do well there...that will give a blue hue.

    If you're ready to get some suggestions throw it out to the conifers forum and you might get some good hits for blues and golds.

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    abciximab, sorry I took so long to respond to your inquiry. I bought both from a place called, hold on to something, this originality will blow your mind... "The Nursery" VERY nice folks to deal with. I believe it is a family run business as in the owner's daughter answers the phone. I have got his wife on the phone at their office, too. Again, great people to do business with from my experience. I pestered them monthly leading up to the digging and weekly all of November to try to set a pick up date. They were always very kind and helpful. I mentioned it above but off the top of my head I think they were $140 each.

    Here is a link that might be useful: The Nursery - Not just wholesale

  • abciximab
    12 years ago

    John, Thanks for the info. Im familiar with AR climate and can help with the conifers. I have a lot of them. What size area do you have for the yellow conifer? Is the area full sun?

  • greenlarry
    12 years ago

    Really sorry for the loss, I'd be well peed off! Can you not graft some stems onto another hardy maple?

  • j0nd03
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    ReoPro,
    I will have to get back with you on conifer siting and selection. I filled in a lot of spots with deciduous trees. My philosophy on most of the trees is eventually overlapping with only a couple allowed to grow to max width. I am set on getting an Ogon but the only one I have been able to track down today was a $100 3 gallon!

    I believe you also have experience with p. abies acrocona that I am interested in (?). How did your conifers perform this year? Feel free to email me if you decide to reply, no hurry, no pressure :)

    Larry,
    Good idea. I wonder what rootstock would be best for the hybrid? I have a ton of acer saccharinum I could dig up and graft to. Would be a fun experiment.

    John