Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  JimLewis on Wed Apr 25, 2012 10:46 pm

Well! Aren't trees lucky that Human Beings came along? I wonder how trees managed before Genus Homo split from all the other Hominids two million or so years ago. Who or what managed to slather those petroleum-based cut pastes (wound sealants) onto their broken branches so they might survive?

Dr. Chalker-Scott's article referred to someone called Shigo. Dr. Alex Shigo is the scientist who first pointed out the difficulties and dangers of sealing cuts in trees and that trees had ways to cope without our "help.".

"Alex L. Shigo (8 May 1930 – 6 October 2006) was a plant pathologist with the United States Forest Service whose studies of tree decay resulted in many improvements to standard arboricultural practices."

and

"Early in his career, the first one-man chainsaws became available. These enabled him to prepare longitudinal sections of trees, which allowed him to study the longitudinal spread of decay organisms within them. A major discovery from this work was that trees have ways of walling off decaying tissues, which he named Compartmentalization of Decay in Trees. This led to reassessment of arboricultural practices such as pruning techniques and cavity treatments, which showed that many of these actually promoted decay or were ineffective. The ANSI A-300 Pruning Standard reflects his recommendations." (emphasis added)

These cites are from the brief Wikipedia bio of Shigo . If you want the list of his papers, including the ones in question, go to: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alex_Shigo to be pointed in the right direction. As often happens when someone shows a batch of professionals that they'd been doing it wrong all along, Shigo's theories were controversial for a few years in the 1970s and early 1980s, but they're accepted today (except, apparently, among many bonsaiests <g>).

None of us have the ability, the resources, the facilities or the time to conduct wide-scale, detailed, replicable, and controlled scientific research on this topic in the extremely unlikely event that "bonsai" act differently than "trees." Relying on someone's statement that "I-applied-or fed-this-or-that-to-my-trees-and-they-did-great (and-they-died) seems to me to be a bit silly, especially since -- even if you did the same things -- your growing conditions, your abilities, and a whole host of other conditions will be so different.

Science isn't -- or shouldn't be -- a faith-based activity (much as some folks would like to make it be regarding some things taught in the schools).


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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Poink88 on Thu Apr 26, 2012 1:34 am

JimLewis wrote:Well! Aren't trees lucky that Human Beings came along? I wonder how trees managed before Genus Homo split from all the other Hominids two million or so years ago. Who or what managed to slather those petroleum-based cut pastes (wound sealants) onto their broken branches so they might survive?
Note that before humans came along they weren't collected, chopped and placed in pots either.

In our case...before medicine came, everyone did without and we survived. You think we don't need any now then?

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Poink88 on Thu Apr 26, 2012 2:16 am

Jay,

Problem with that is that it becomes a one sided topic. I know some people who knows everything will not listen...you are not trying to influence those but the others who are reasonable and have open eyes looking for an answer.

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Poink88 on Thu Apr 26, 2012 2:35 pm

JimLewis wrote:Relying on someone's statement that "I-applied-or fed-this-or-that-to-my-trees-and-they-did-great (and-they-died) seems to me to be a bit silly, especially since -- even if you did the same things -- your growing conditions, your abilities, and a whole host of other conditions will be so different.
This is a double edged sword, what applies to me applies to you and everyone. Who then has the right to talk and give advise? If we apply this, then the forum better shut down because we shouldn't share anything.
JimLewis wrote:Science isn't -- or shouldn't be -- a faith-based activity (much as some folks would like to make it be regarding some things taught in the schools).
You keep talking about Science and I agree to some degree. What bothers me is you seem to believe that we know everything we need to know about trees. Well sorry to disillusion you but WE DON'T!!! We discussed this a bit on PM's but I will re-iterate my belief that we hardly scratched the surface in understanding plants and how they work.

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Bonsai Kas on Thu Apr 26, 2012 8:56 pm

Bonsai Kas wrote:I hope this topic won't turn into a right/wrong game and that we could discuss our own experience with the subject how this topic was intended and leave the quarreling to the scientists.

Quoting myself here Wink

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  marcus watts on Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:09 am

Exactly!

the thread started with 5 simple questions - why some people are unable to be helpfull and simply answer the questions is beyond me - (tis the grumpy old man syndrome creeping in again me thinks) . To just spout up with other peoples writings and conclusions or answer with links to other peoples work is pointless - you need to have personal hands on experience of the products in order to answer surely??

[quote="Bonsai Kas"]Hello Growers.
I would like to know your experience with wound sealant/cut paste;
-Which brand do you use?
-Do you have a homemade recipe from grandma that works miracles?
-Does the brand make any difference and which brands should I avoid at all cost?
-Are there any species that react very strongly on certain kinds, or do some species do better without?
-Are the imported Japanese brands that much better as the average garden centre type?
[quote]

-Kiyonal - a toothpaste type tube of sealer
-No, but Dario gave one - not sure if anything has healed over with it yet though? probably not enough time passed yet but he'll let us know
-I find the tubs of 'cut paste' - putty like texture - of little use - snails eat it, birds peck it off etc -
-I seal all cuts I can on all species and have no reason to complain or question my results
-Yes I believe so, and one tube lasts me 5 years so who really cares about the relatively low cost?? - But I dont use garden center alternatives so its just a personal choice

cheers

Marcus

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Walter Pall on Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:51 am

Marcus,

is this so difficult to understand?
There is no need for wound dressing.
I work with thousands of trees around the world without any treatment at all since decades. Wolfgang Kaeflein, the man who has collected around 50.000 trees in Germany has never used any treatment.

All this with GREAT success.

It is HORTICULTURAL STATE OF THE ART to do this. It does not need scientific proof. Evident and trivial facts do not need to be cited. It is being tought at universities and colleges as state of the art. Only to the so much backword looking bonsai scene it seems a daring novelty.

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Walter Pall on Fri Apr 27, 2012 8:09 am

Since millions of years trees have learned to cope very well with wounds.
This does not neeed scientific proof, it is evident.
Since a relatively very short time peole are trying to help the trees.
It needs scientific proof whether this is really so helpful.
Those who do nothing need no proof for the benefits of that. Those who do somehting must prove that it is helpful.

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Sakaki on Fri Apr 27, 2012 8:29 am

Dear Mr Pall

I grown up in a world of plants and trees as I lived in a village side for almost 20-25 years.
Therefore I learned many ancient treatment methods from my grand-granddad, grandmom, etc.
Once a time, my granddad (who was a nature enthusiast) told me: "dude, you dont need to use any special material, chemicals or treatment as long as you do an application in a timely manner"
I asked him "if the tree becomes sick, then what to do? Still no need to use chemicals, special materials, etc?", he said "do you think that the nature use special treatments, chemicals, etc.? Nature use its temperature sensors to set its timer in order to do everything in a timely manner" Smile

Now, when I read your statement I see that this theory is verified once again. Smile
Sometimes many of us do some applications not in a suitable time, then we have to use some corrective materials just like sealants, pastes, etc. (we even use them although we do applications in correct time).
So, I would like to take this opportunity to ask you a question: If you do an application in a wrong time (due to some obligatory reasons out of your control), then what kind of methods, treatments do you prefer?

Thanks
Taner

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Poink88 on Fri Apr 27, 2012 12:38 pm

Walter Pall wrote:Since millions of years trees have learned to cope very well with wounds.
This does not neeed scientific proof, it is evident.
Since a relatively very short time peole are trying to help the trees.
It needs scientific proof whether this is really so helpful.
Those who do nothing need no proof for the benefits of that. Those who do somehting must prove that it is helpful.
Walter,

In line with your logic.
For million of years trees did not need any special fertilizers. May I ask, do you fertilize now?
Do you use insecticides? They sure didn't need any for millions of years.
Do you cook and season your food? Do you wear clothes? Have you taken any medications?
People and animals have been giving birth naturally but will I advise it now and not go to a hospital? I won't.

What I am saying is that nature doesn't always provide the best and the trees don't have a choice....we do.

We altered the trees adaptive location, treated them differently, potted them, etc. and you still believe they can't use any help? It is just a wound to you and me but we changed the weather, temperature, moisture, lighting, insects, etc. that they are exposed to. Nature have its way but it doesn't mean you cannot help the tree.

There was a group of men facing the cave and they enjoyed the shadows....one broke away and saw a different, much better version and stayed there. Little did hew knew that he is looking at a mirror reflection of the trees outside but he got stuck there believing what he saw is the real thing and refused to move on...

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Glaucus on Fri Apr 27, 2012 12:59 pm

Poink88, why are you drawing at straws? If you plant a tree in the forest it doesn't need fertilizer. If you plant it in 100% sterile substrate then it does. The difference is obvious.
Clothes and medicine? Logic? Really?


Sure they can use help. But does wound paste actually help them? That's the issue and the problem is there isn't sufficient evidence for it. at least I haven't seen any. And there's plenty of people who feel they need to defend the use of wound paste because that is what they have been doing for years.

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  JimLewis on Fri Apr 27, 2012 1:22 pm

Some folks argue just to argue. Facts are immaterial. Hard to ignore, but best to try.

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Sakaki on Fri Apr 27, 2012 1:27 pm

Dear Dario

Discussion is about pastes, sealants, and their applications etc. Not about insecticides, fertilizers... Smile
Of course we use them.

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  chris on Fri Apr 27, 2012 1:51 pm

I worked for many years as "head gardener" on a small estate just outside Cardiff (S Wales). The person I took over from was Ron he had been there man and boy as they say and I was so lucky that he contiued one day a week to show me the Secrets of the place. I can't tell you how much I gleand from Ron not only horticulture but life skill's as well, but anyway lets get to the reason for this.
We were pruning back in the orchard, taking out the iner growth and making some bigger cuts to the shap of the trees, as soon as we cut a branch Ron would bend down and get some earth from the base of the tree and rub it on the cut, I asked if we should be sealing with some of the commercial products on the market as was my way untill then. Ron's answer was that good air was better than anything chemical and that the only reason for rubbing the earth in was to visualy hide the cut, he then pointed out the hundreds of cuts he had made over the sixty years he had worked there!!!!
I had taken for granted that I had to seal the cuts, I have never sealed another cut since.
Its difficult to tell others what they should do, and to be honest Maples in the spring need to be thought about.
When I work on other people's trees I will ask what they want to do.

Regards Chris

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Poink88 on Fri Apr 27, 2012 2:08 pm

I know what we are discussing but people use trees from nature from millions of years ago as example to support their argument. What I am pointing is that argument is not valid. I am not saying they are wrong either.

For the record, I do not treat/seal all my plants. I only apply it on a few that I believe will benefit from it.

I do not chastise anyone who is not using it and I am only asking they treat me (and others who do) the same.

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  coh on Fri Apr 27, 2012 3:54 pm

OK, let me see if I can summarize to this point (based on this thread and previous threads on this and other forums):

1) Modern horticultural practice is to NOT seal wounds on trees in the landscape.

2) Some internationally-known bonsai growers apply this thinking to their bonsai and do not seal pruning wounds.

3) Some internationally-known bonsai growers continue to seal at least some of their pruning wounds.

4) Both groups claim that the procedure works for them.

Any questions? Smile


Last edited by coh on Fri Apr 27, 2012 5:27 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Poink88 on Fri Apr 27, 2012 3:56 pm

Chris,

Pretty accurate summary IMHO...and no questions here Wink.

Oh please note that there are exceptions to horticulturists where sealing is advocated.
1. To avoid Oak tree's from being infected with oak wilt, it is always treated (actually mandated here) when cut.
2. To stop "bleeding", some plants just continue flowing sap (specie and time driven).
3. To conserve water and prevent dehydration. (I believe this applies mostly to newly collected trees with little or no roots).

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  drgonzo on Fri Apr 27, 2012 5:54 pm


Do the Japanese use wound sealants on their trees?
-Jay

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Sakaki on Fri Apr 27, 2012 6:21 pm

drgonzo wrote:
Do the Japanese use wound sealants on their trees?
-Jay

This thread will become an endless story Smile

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  drgonzo on Fri Apr 27, 2012 6:36 pm

I just went to go look and i noticed on my Korean hornbeam that I pruned earlier in the spring, the wounds I dressed with Tightbond III have begun to roll a callus and the ones where I forgot to seal haven't and are bone dry. Same branch too. If wound dressings have no effect on wound healing shouldn't they both be healing at the same rate? What am I doing wrong?

I wish I could get a picture for you all but my camera is terrible, I'l try anyway.
-Jay

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  drgonzo on Fri Apr 27, 2012 6:58 pm

Ok, not bad for my camera I hope you can all see it. I'll take another picture in a month and we'll track the progress.

The two cuts were made side by side earlier this spring on the same branch at the same time. One sealed with Tightbond III one not (because I forgot). The circle in red is the callus beginning to roll over the top sealed cut, the green arrow indicates the unsealed cut. Both cuts made by the same tool, and both branches actually have wire on them. Scince we know sealing cuts makes no difference then what did I do wrong here?


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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Poink88 on Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:07 pm

Jay,

While I am with you, we need a bigger sample to prove things. Your sample is great that it is on the same branch but there are still other factors that can influence healing. Location is very critical...one area (though just a few mm away) can have better sap flow for one, depth and angle of cut is another.

What works on your tree may not on others as well. I will submit maple during spring and logwood will definitely react differently when sealed vs not.

Just trying to be the devil's advocate here and really interested in finding a good/fair resolution.

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Sakaki on Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:13 pm

Plus cut area dimensions and bark thicknesses are different!

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  Poink88 on Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:18 pm

By the way, I cannot see the picture(s) and commenting based on what I am reading. I maintain that a bigger sample (not just one specie either) is needed to get conclusive results.

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Re: Wound sealant, cut paste etc. Experiences, advice and what (not) to do?

Post  drgonzo on Fri Apr 27, 2012 7:30 pm

Sakaki wrote:Plus cut area dimensions and bark thicknesses are different!

Cut areas are indeed different sizes as one is noticeably larger than the other. Both branches have a similar vigor and if you can make out the thickness of the bark from my photo you have much better eyes than I do. If my memory serves its actually the cork cambium that heals wounds to the tree. But its remarkable eh, and its not a subtle difference between the two is it? It's quite pronounced. One wound is actively healing and the other you can actually begin to see the Xylem tissue cracking and it's quite dried out.

Dario is of course correct this is'nt scientific by any means, It's important to remember that;

"Relying on someone's statement that "I-applied-or fed-this-or-that-to-my-trees-and-they-did-great (and-they-died) seems to me to be a bit silly, especially since -- even if you did the same things -- your growing conditions, your abilities, and a whole host of other conditions will be so different. " And this would apply equally to those recommending sealants as to those who don't.

its just an example of my personal experience with using wound sealants. Not trying to settle the debate, just sharing a photo. As I mentioned I'll re-photograph the area in couple months, maybe end of the summer, and we'll track the progress luckily I don't need to prune that branch at all this year.
-Jay

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