Bark Bummers

Bark Bummers


This time of year is good and challenging for Midwesterners.  The challenging?  The weather.  Nuff said.  The good?  It’s a great time to notice potential problems in trees and shrubs in the landscape.   At this point in the season, there aren’t any leaves, fruit or flowers (except for a couple species) to get in the way of seeing the damage and/or concerns on the bark. This blog post will be heavy on the photos to show examples of what to look for.  Once you find them, you can proceed to watch the specific area(s) or take action.  Please email me at for specific advice.


Sunscald Injury


Zimmerman Pine Moth


Critter Damage


Crack in bark, sapwood and heartwood

black knot john gentry

Black Knot


Included bark

John Fech
Horticulture Extension Educator at Nebraska Extension
John Fech is a horticulturist with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and certified arborist with the International Society of Arboriculture. The author of 2 books and over 200 popular and trade journal articles, he focuses his time on teaching effective landscape maintenance techniques, water conservation, diagnosing turf and ornamental problems and encouraging effective bilingual communication in the green industry. He works extensively with the media to extend the message of landscape sustainability, making over 100 television and radio appearances each year.
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