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Author Topic: Health of black cherry  (Read 690 times)

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Offline Busybeaver

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Health of black cherry
« on: April 15, 2018, 04:36:27 PM »
Can someone tell me why the black cherry on our property seem to be suffering? We have quite a few large and many small cherry. I was walking around yesterday and looking at the cherry specifically and noticed we have quite a few dead trees. Also I noticed the wood peckers have tore up a lot of them. Is there something specific that is affecting our cherry?
 
Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in awhile

Offline John Mc

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2018, 06:19:22 PM »
Black cherry is not very shade tolerant. Have the rest of your woods grown up around them?
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Offline Busybeaver

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2018, 06:33:38 PM »
Black cherry is not very shade tolerant. Have the rest of your woods grown up around them?


Yes they are surrounded by large oak, hickory and pine. There is a group of about 30 of them about 8 to 10" dbh that are on the side of one of our ponds that look like they are doing well. So I guess that would support your thoughts on being to shaded. I have also heard that they don't like wet lowlands very much. I was curious because the woodpeckers seem to really like them. The other morning I saw a pair of large pileated peckers going to town on the same tree. We also have a lot of the small woodpeckers.  I never really noticed before I got into the milling and really started looking at trees. 
Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in awhile

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2018, 06:37:04 PM »
So are the trees dying and then the bugs come and that draws the woodpeckers? Or are the bugs there first, drawing in the woodpeckers and killing the trees. Some of them seem very alive and healthy but have many woodpecker holes. I am far from an expert so I don't really know what to look for besides the obvious. 
Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in awhile

Offline John Mc

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2018, 08:25:36 PM »
The woodpeckers are the last thing in the chain. They are not there unless the bugs are, and odds are if the tree is infested with enough bugs to keep a woodpecker interested, it's already got some problems.
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Offline Busybeaver

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2018, 09:10:35 PM »
The woodpeckers are the last thing in the chain. They are not there unless the bugs are, and odds are if the tree is infested with enough bugs to keep a woodpecker interested, it's already got some problems.

Thank you. That makes sense. So should I cut these trees and mill them while there is still some life in them? I guess they are already on there way out if the woodpeckers are going to town on them.
Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in awhile

Offline John Mc

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2018, 09:20:39 PM »
I would, but then I can't see the trees.
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Offline Busybeaver

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2018, 09:36:05 PM »
Ok thank you.  Maybe I'll get a few pics tommorow to show exten of damage.
Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in awhile

Offline John Mc

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2018, 09:42:33 PM »
There are others on here that know a lot more about this than I, so maybe they'll chime in, but if the woodpeckers are really going after it, that's not a good sign.
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Offline thecfarm

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2018, 07:24:29 AM »
I have some sort of cherry on my land. Crooked,did I saw crooked,will stand dead for years and be solid too.If ones gets a foot across that is just about as big as they will get.
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2018, 09:10:36 AM »
My place was high graded of all mature black cherry maybe 30 yrs ago and the sapplings havent done well at all.  Once a baby cherry leans out from under a big canopy tree, itll just droop over into an arch. 

When you cut a cherry you really need to also cut out a generous clearing for the seedlings if you want them to be replaced.  Cant leave fast growing shade tolerant stuff nearby or theyll win.   
Revelation 3:20

Offline nativewolf

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2018, 09:31:51 AM »
We have a lot of black cherry around here and they are definitely a colonizer species, first into the opening, grows quickly and will keep growing well if everything is perfect.  They kill each other off and other species often will overtop them at some point and that is the end of the cherry.  

I'd cut and saw all of them if I were you (if they are competing for sun) and let the oaks & hickory take over.  Is the pine a white pine or red pine?   Here in VA with have pinus virginiana and it is a trash tree, early field colonizer but dies at 50, no clear wood...horrid tree.  No market for it but we'll drop the really large ones to reduce risk that they fall and damage good trees.  Anyhow, my point here is that maybe take a look at the pine and see if that is something that should come down now too.  

Even a small cherry saws wonderfully, I save some 10 inch trees and cut them for firewood and if really straight we cut small boards or posts.  
Liking Walnut

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Health of black cherry
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2018, 07:08:30 PM »
Ours suffer badly from black knot and they grow mainly on abandoned farms and fence rows. They love old field growing in alders. They can get quite fat up here, but not much taller than 65 feet. They are useful if you can get 6 or 8 or 10 foot clear sections and band mill them. The rest of the tree is usually limby and cankered with black knot. Some of them can yield nice burls, others might be mostly a mess of hardened gum with remnants of wood. We are at the end of the range, so I call it 'fringe' wood. Not very significant in our forest or managed really except maybe by a few woodlot owners. The monkey bears around hear love the cherries, but they strip the tops out.

Pre-commercial thinning pays off. :)

'If she wants to play lumberjack, she's going to have to learn to handle her end of the log.'
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