Chinese elm trunk damage

TomB

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Are you talking about the old bark flaking off? They do that, it's normal.
 

Risealone

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No the top of the trunk is visibly dead. It isn’t the normal flaking you see throughout the rest of the trunk. All of the bark has flakes off of the top portion of the trunk.
 

Risealone

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I just wanted to make sure that the dead trunk isn’t going to compromise the viability of the tree.
 

sorce

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Seems you can cut it off?

Welcome to Crazy!

Sorce
 

Risealone

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I would rather leave it for now. I just wasn’t sure if cutting it off and sealing it would allow the tree to retain more moisture. Thank you for your responses
 

Bonsai Nut

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Simple answer to your question - no, having a dead upper trunk won't compromise your tree, in and of itself. The bark will die back to the live vein, and the dead trunk will eventually rot, leave a hollow, and that will eventually get healed over. You can accelerate the process by carving away the dead trunk until you hit live bark, seal the edges of the wound, carve the dead trunk down a little with a concave chisel, and in a few (perhaps ten) years it will be gone.

This is all predicated on the fact that you have a thriving, healthy Chinese elm. If your elm is strong, you can cut away all branches to the trunk... and it will push new buds everywhere. They are extremely forgiving...

elm1_2.jpg

Same tree 10 years later. (This is from the back of the tree to show how the scar heals)

elm1_3.jpg
 
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