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Splicing a damaged branch.

We bought a lovely tall Prunus tree for the front of our house. Unfortunately one of the branches is damaged.  Would it be possible to diagonally cut out the damaged bit (50% of the branch,see the white of the car behind showing through)?Is it likely to work? Do I wrap it with string or tape? Does it need wax or grease over the spliced section to stop it drying out? 
PS I'm not a gardener! Thanks, Jeremy 



  • K67K67 Posts: 2,507
    I think not, trees have systems for drawing water up so I think it's on a par with removing a scratch on your arm by cutting your arm off and then reattaching with a bit of tape to hold it together.
    Your body repairs itself and your tree is doing the same.
    Can't see the whole branch in question but does it still look healthy?

  • pansyfacepansyface Posts: 22,272
    The damage doesn’t look like a crack or a cut. It looks like bacterial canker. In which case, watch this video

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
    If you live in Derbyshire, as I do.
  • Hi K67,
    It's more than equivalent to a scratch,
    There is probably less than half of the branch still connected. I hoped that something like a graft might help it.
    The branch is healthy and has leaves, so hopefully it will repair itself and form a knuckle in a few years. I am supporting it with string at the moment, see pic.
    Thanks, Jeremy
  • Hi Pansyface,
    I'm pretty sure it's not a canker, the projecting bits look like folded bark where the branch almost snapped off. Sounds like I just need to leave it alone and hope for the best🙂
  • tui34tui34 Posts: 3,198
    Hi - I think you are doing the right thing - the branch looks as if it is repairing itself.  The string/rope seems like a good idea.  You could try binding it with electrical tape, but quite frankly, it may be best to leave the rest to nature.
    A good hoeing is worth two waterings.

  • pansyfacepansyface Posts: 22,272
    Do you have any idea how this mysterious damage occurred?

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
    If you live in Derbyshire, as I do.
  • We bought it from a tree nursery, who also delivered it, but not sure if it got snapped before or after delivery :-/
    Sounds like it's best left to repair itself.
  • Hi Tuikowhai34,
    I agree, I'll leave the string on and left it do it's own thing over the next few years. 
    Thanks, Jeremy
  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Posts: 11,391
    edited May 2020
    Personally, I'd wait a couple of months (to avoid silver leaf) until midsummer and remove that branch as that damage will always be a weak point and potential entry point for disease.  Trees are able to heal clean wounds much quicker if you cut branches off immediately above the collar, just here in your case:
    Of course, you could let it heal and see what happens but you do risk a disease entering that open wound until that is complete.
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • Hi Bobthegardener,
    I think I am too tempted to leave it and hope for the best. It's the lowest branch on the tree and it would help with its shape. 
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