Serious Pine Problem

Central, AL(Zone 8a)

I noticed a large defect in the bark of this Loblolly pine in my yard this week. It is as if the bark split upward for 40 feet or so. There isn't any sap exuding but ants are in this area. There is no burn to suggest lightning.

What could have caused it? The tree is probably 75-100 years old and I would hate to lose it. Is there hope?

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Powder Springs, GA(Zone 7b)

Maybe a lightning strike. Our old house had a maple in the front yard that was struck by lightning and it peeled the bark on one side and blew the irises nearby out of the ground - blew out a TV, a VCR, the cable modem, and partially got a big TV (yet the cable company said it did not run in on their line). We had the tree taken down a few years later - the bark had healed over but the tree just became much too large for the small front yard.

If the pine does die, it gives you new opportunities for planting something new. We had a huge pine taken down a few years ago and we planted the area with a Kwanzan cherry, hostas, hydrangeas, and lilies. Eventually the cherry will shade some of the smaller plants out so we will have to move them but that is a few years down the road.

Central, AL(Zone 8a)

Thanks. I really like the pine. It gives me free mulch. I hope it survives. It is close enough to the house that if it starts getting sick I will have to remove it.

Powder Springs, GA(Zone 7b)

It is scary being close to the house when the severe storms come through. Most damage is done by falling trees.

Northumberland, United Kingdom(Zone 9a)

Yep, definitely lightning strike. Time will tell whether it survives or not.

Resin

PS for hcmcdole: 'Kanzan' (no "w" ;-)

Central, AL(Zone 8a)

I just looked again. It looked like a tiger had clawed the trunk and cast bark chunks 50 feet away.

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Central, AL(Zone 8a)

I have a feeling my old friend is on borrowed time.

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Northumberland, United Kingdom(Zone 9a)

It could've been a lot worse!

http://www.pinetum.org/lightning.htm

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Lititz, PA(Zone 6b)

I hope it pulls through for you! We have a Loblolly as well but it is very young (only 13' tall) but it is one of my more favored trees.

Central, AL(Zone 8a)

Reading the links from another post on this forum from the University of GA, lightning- damaged pines are attractive to pine boring beetles and can attract an infestation. That may tip the scales to take it down before it gets sick.

Lititz, PA(Zone 6b)

Wow that really stinks. I feel your pain on that one.

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