Trees for Tennessee Landscapes - Maintaining and Protecting
Trees are commonly wounded and the causes are many: broken branches; impacts, abrasions and scrapes; animal damage; insect attack; fire; etc. Wounds usually break the bark and damage the food- (phloem or inner bark) and water- (xylem or wood) conducting tissues. Wounds also expose the inside of the tree to organisms, primarily bacteria and fungi that may infect and cause discoloration and decay of the wood. Decay can result in structurally weakened tree stems and unsightly trees and can shorten the life of a tree. Decay in a tree cannot be cured. However, proper tree care can limit the progress of decay in an injured tree. This factsheet discusses tree responses to wounding and what can be done after wounding to keep the tree healthy.
"SP683 Tree Wounds - Response of Trees and What You Can Do," The University of Tennessee Agricultural Extension Service, SP683-13.5M-10/06 R12-4910-065-009-07 07-0073, http://trace.tennessee.edu/utk_agexfores/83