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Should I leave my birch staked?



I planted this Himalayan birch in spring last year. It has reached about 15ft tall now and, as you can see, is shedding its young bark. I was wondering how long I should leave it staked? It feels pretty sturdy, but of course it's a tall, thin tree. I've loosened its support band so that it isn't constricted by the stake. 
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  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,754
    I'd stake it properly, unless it's in a sheltered spot and well enough established  :)

    The stake looks in real danger of rubbing all the bark on it, which could create problems. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....



    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Fairygirl said:
    I'd stake it properly, unless it's in a sheltered spot and well enough established  :)

    The stake looks in real danger of rubbing all the bark on it, which could create problems. 
    Without wishing to sound ignorant... What do you mean by "properly"? 😕
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,754
    An angled stake, at around 45 degrees,  positioned lower down - about a third of the way up the trunk, and  into the prevailing weather  :)

    If the wind mainly comes from the side the fence is on, the top of the stake would face that. If it's the opposite direction, the opposite would apply. 
    It allows the bulk of the trunk to move, while being securely anchored at the roots. 
    This link probably describes it better 
    https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?pid=208

    If it's sheltered, a single stake is fine, but there needs to be a good gap between the stake and the trunk to prevent rubbing   :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....



    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Doghouse RileyDoghouse Riley Posts: 347
    edited October 2021
    You might need to "stake the stake," tie or screw another piece of wood about a couple of feet up after driving it into the bed at an angle.

    Better still, a more substantial stake.
    I'd use a rubber or similar tie that keeps the tree away from the stake.
    Something like this.



    I always appreciate photographs  like yours which are  helpful when people are looking for advice.

    Beats a "text" every time.
  • Thank you both! 
  • Balgay.HillBalgay.Hill Posts: 1,085
    I wouldn't do it the way Doghouse has pictured, as you risk damaging the roots. Look at the top photo on the link from Fairygirl.
    Sunny Dundee
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,854
    I wouldn't do it the way Doghouse has pictured, as you risk damaging the roots. Look at the top photo on the link from Fairygirl.
    I too agree with @Fairygirl / RHS
    Devon.
  • ...I've only ever staked birch if it's leaning to seek the light, and I don't want it to do so...
  • Balgay.HillBalgay.Hill Posts: 1,085
    ...I've only ever staked birch if it's leaning to seek the light, and I don't want it to do so...
    It depends on how exposed your garden is. Mine need staked at first or they'll be blown over. The OP might not need to re-stake as the tree has had 2 growing seasons for the roots to secure the tree.
    Sunny Dundee
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,754
    Indeed @Balgay.Hill - you're spot on in that the site is what matters. That's why I said that in my opening response too. It's probably quite secure due to the length of time it's been there, but it's hard to tell from a photo   :)  
    I didn't need to stake the rowan I moved this spring into an existing border, but it has a very solid, double sided fence behind it, which blocks the wind that comes from predominantly that direction, and it's in solid clay, which is ideal for it, so it's very secure. 
    As you say, without that fence, it would have been a very different scenario  :)
    I can't see the other post/picture in question as I have that poster on ignore, but I assume it's the double vertical stake which is often used when planting in exposed areas - mainly for young whips or trees, and only done at planting time so roots aren't affected.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....



    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
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