Orchard Weed Control - Protection of Tree Trunks

Some of the burn-down herbicides have been implicated as possible causes of damage to young tree trunks that have green tissue on portions of the lower trunk.
Orchard Weed Control - Protection of Tree Trunks - Articles


Tyvek® tree guard. Photo: Rob Crassweller

For a number of years we have been using Tyvek® on trees in our Rock Springs orchards. Yes, the insulating material that new houses are wrapped in may help to reduce potential damage. We had been obtaining Tyvek® from a company in Canada but the quality of the product was inconsistent. In some years it came in a 3 ml thickness and in others it came in a 7 ml thickness. This past year we found a more consistent supplier.

Uline, the shipping supplies company, sells rolls of Tyvek® that we have been using to make tree guards around young trees. You can purchase 150 foot long rolls in various widths to cut into pieces that can be wrapped around the base of newly planted trees and stapled together to produce impermeable wraps. We use the 30 inch width to cut 10 x 10 inch squares and then staple them loosely around the tree trunk. With a standard roll we can make about 540 guards at a cost for materials around $0.20 each.

The "guards" last about 3 to 5 years. This is long enough to overcome the concern about green bark. While we have not measured it we also believe we may be getting a benefit of the white reflecting sun during the summer and winter. To order go to www.uline.com and search for Tyvek products.

A. Plastic, B. Perforated metal, C. Corrugated cardboard Over the years we have tried a number of different tree guards. While they all work to some extent they can be expensive and they are not without their problems. Photos: Rob Crassweller