Whitewashing trees in autumn: when and how to process the bark

Autumn processing of fruit and other trees in the garden is the main step in protecting the future harvest from pests. In addition, the procedure will protect other vegetation from the spread of unwanted insects.

Why whitewash the trunks

Before work, the trunks are cleaned of moss and other growths. This can be done with a rubber spatula, a stiff washcloth, and other not too abrasive devices. Metal tools should not be used as they will damage the plants. After that, you can disinfect and cover the wounds with garden varnish.

Whitewashing is a continuation of a series of works. The application of safe white formulations prevents the invasion of insects that live in the bark and damage tree trunks.

The trunks of young crops must be processed before the start of the lower branches. The height of whitewashing of adult plants can reach 2 m. In city parks, this figure does not exceed 1 m, but in such places beauty is monitored and little attention is paid to efficiency.

What composition to process

Lime mortars are often used for autumn processing. They are made from soap, copper sulphate and lime. The first component is needed for better adhesion of the product, the second disinfects, and the third reflects the rays of the sun. Garden whitewash based on lime from 10 liters. water in which 2.5 kg is diluted. slaked lime, 0.5 kg. copper sulfate and 100 g of casein glue.

The components are thoroughly mixed until dissolved, after which the composition is infused for several hours.

A more complex composition is popular. From 8 p. pure water, to which 1 kg is added. manure and lime, 200 g. copper sulfate. The ingredients are insisted for a couple of hours. It is important to make the mass as homogeneous as possible.You can mix 2 kg. slaked lime, 1 kg. clay of a fatty type, 250 g of copper sulphate, 1 shovel of manure and 10 liters. water. Everything is mixed and kept for about 3 hours. A simple option is 2 parts of PVA glue and 1 part of lime or chalk. If necessary, you can dilute the composition with clean water to the required density.

This mixture adheres well to the bark, forms a breathable film and is not harmful to vegetation.

It is possible to treat the trunks with ordinary water-based paint without color pigments, resistance enhancers and other things. This product contains antiseptic ingredients that will also be beneficial for trees. They will protect the bark from certain fungal infections.

Optimal terms for work

The work is carried out at a positive air temperature. This activity should be carried out in dry weather. For complete fixation, it will take about a day. The time may be longer if the protection was applied in more than 2 coats.

Paint rollers are convenient for working with smooth trunks, and rough surfaces are well processed with a wide brush.

If there are several dozen trees, then it is worth using a garden spray. Whitewashing can be done in late September or early October, depending on the climatic zone. It is important to avoid rainy periods.

  • Cleaning the soil from debris in the area of ​​the tree crown and cover this area with a film. These measures will prevent bark, moss, lichen, and wintering pests from entering the soil.
  • Cleansing the trunk and skeletal branches from lagging old bark, moss, lichen. It is best to carry out this procedure with wooden or plastic scrapers. This way you will not injure the trees.
  • Inspection of the trunk and skeletal branches for hollows and cracks. Seal (cover up) the cleaned cracks and hollows with special compounds.
  • Remove (destroy) debris from the bedding film.
  • Disinfection of cleaned surfaces with special agents. This must be done exclusively in dry weather, and if precipitation has passed after treatment, then the disinfection is repeated. After that, the trees are whitened after 1-3 days so that the disinfectant solution is well absorbed into the bark of the tree.

Most often, for the last stage of the preparatory work, solutions of iron or copper sulfate, Bordeaux mixture, mixtures of mineral salts, ash infusion, garden pitch and others are used.

When is it not too late to whitewash garden trees in the fall?

Frans Hasanovich, good evening again. Frost began. On the weekend they promise -6. And I wanted to whitewash the trees. Can't you already?
The trees are 5 years old, the first harvest was already. The young apple tree is covered with lichen and in cracks, even thin twigs. Rinse it with vitriol, but the frost is already.

On the site there were 3 old trees, black spots, I'm afraid that black crayfish. Therefore, I wanted to whitewash the young trees, and add copper sulfate to the whitewash. and pour hemp from old trees with iron sulfate. there is no point in spilling the earth, it is already frozen.

How, then, is it worth whitewashing or waiting for February?

young apple tree

One of the old trees. these are the black spots. there are even more of them on other trees.

Basic whitewashing rules trees in the garden

The first step is to decide to what height you will whitewash the trees. Typically, the height of the whitewashed area is 1.6 m from the soil surface.

Some gardeners believe that young trees should be whitewashed completely, while others recommend whitewashing to the point where the tree begins to branch. Most experts agree that the trunks of young trees with smooth bark for the winter should be wrapped in burlap, overlaid with spruce branches or other covering materials, since the whitewash clogs the pores of the plant, and through it the sun can burn the tender young bark.

When whitewashing, it is not recommended to save the solution - the procedure should be carried out carefully, because the health of the garden depends on it.

After whitewashing, tree trunks do not immediately acquire a bright white color. Therefore, do not be afraid of the result: they will turn white after a couple of hours when the composition begins to dry out.

It is important that the solution applied to the tree trunks is uniform. There should be no lumps in it, and in consistency it should resemble thick sour cream (then the composition will not flow down the trunk).

The whitewash layer should be about 2-3 mm thick. This means that you will have to apply the solution to the trunks several times.

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How to whiten?

There are various options for whitewashing. Someone uses lime, someone more gentle chalk, someone adds clay, straw and manure to create a more durable coating. Someone adds copper sulfate as a fungicide to combat pathogens, someone adds an element of modernity to the usual "old-fashioned" whitewash - PVA glue. Such a whitewash, indeed, lasts well all winter. And someone boldly uses white water-dispersion and acrylic paints from hardware stores.

However, I would like to note that in all these recipes the emphasis is on the durability of the coating, but no one is interested in how a tree feels under a layer of clay or under a film of PVA glue. After all, as I said, it is advisable to cover with whitewash and bole, and all branches potentially included in the risk zone, and this is a large area.

The tree needs air exchange with the external environment, and all coatings reduce this air exchange to one degree or another. All these whitewash are not a natural element, but a man-made element.

But in garden stores you can also find special garden paints, precisely developed taking into account all factors - not to harm the tree, ensuring air exchange, and to stay on the bark from autumn to spring. I will not list the names so as not to create advertising and anti-advertising, go in and take an interest.

By the way, there is a separate line of discussion about the need to whitewash young seedlings. Some argue that they have a vulnerable young bark and it is this that needs to be protected with whitewashing, and their opponents also base their arguments on the tenderness of the young bark and categorically do not recommend whitening it.

Instead of whitewashing, you can use special garden or do-it-yourself bandages. © gardenbarn

Bonus: SOS tree rescue

As promised, we have prepared for you valuable advice on “emergency” rescue of trees in case of various types of damage. If you help the tree in time, you can preserve both the aesthetics of the garden and the harvest!

Treating tree wounds

To eliminate wounds from saw cuts or various mechanical damage, a garden var is used. Such damage carries serious problems for the plant, up to its death, therefore, therapeutic measures are required. Treat injuries in the spring or early summer. Those wounds that appeared in a different period of time are treated with specially prepared garden pitch. Severely damaged branches are removed completely.

Types of tree damage:

  • trauma from cutting or breaking a branch
  • damage to bark and tree layers
  • wounds affecting the cavity of the hollow.

Before starting to heal a tree, you need to remove all damage to a healthy layer. The protruding knots and pieces of bark are removed, after control stripping, var is applied. Be sure to cover the entire damaged surface with it in order to avoid the ingress of infectious agents, fungi and parasites under the bark. This protection is renewed in the spring.

What to do with broken branches?

Damaged branches must be removed with a pruner, and too large ones with a saw. The place of the saw cut is treated with a pitch. You can often see trees on which the area after the saw cut is painted over with paint. The paint is selected so that the composition contains natural drying oil. Processing with gasoline or kerosene will negatively affect the health of the plant.

How to properly treat a hollow?


The area where the injuries have not been completely healed can be transformed into a hollow. Be sure to seal this injury. First you need to completely clean the cavity from rot and dry well. The next step is disinfection, for which a solution of copper or iron sulfate is used. Then the hollow cavity is filled with crushed stone or brick, and the top is poured with cement mortar. There are many filling solutions based on mineral oils that include wax, paraffin or turpentine.

Special balsam for the bark. An example of a balm: "Artificial bark". Such preparations are applied to the damaged bark. The balm heals sunburns, vaccinations, damage after pruning branches, forms a protective layer. Does not pose a danger to humans and animals.

Var "Gardener" soft consistency, disinfects the injured surface, heals damaged areas. Before use, remove dead areas of the bark, thoroughly cleanse, then disinfect. After all the manipulations performed, a layer of var is applied.

Garden putty. "Blagosad" reduces the risk of early drying of the bark. The main function is to increase the regenerative capacity of the tree bark. Possesses good adhesion quality. Apply a layer with a spatula.

"Bee" also refers to a variety of garden var. It contains: bee wax, resin, vegetable oils. It is used to regenerate damaged areas of a tree.

Biological balm (Robin Green). Means for disinfecting and treating injuries. Consists of resin, paraffin, oil. Warming up in advance is not necessary.

Means Garden var - reduces the risk of rotting of wood layers, limits the occurrence of parasites and insects, it is used to treat cuts and damaged areas.

Sunburn treatment

When new trees appear in the garden, it is important to start protecting them right away. Adequate care is the early limitation of the traumatic effects of direct sunlight. Before the beginning of spring, when solar activity increases and tree crowns are not covered with foliage, there is a risk of getting burned.

Why do sunburns appear:

  • Before winter, the tree trunk was not treated with a protective agent.
  • The surface of the snow even more reflects the sun's rays onto the crust.
  • Sudden changes in temperature leading to cracking of the bark.
  • Consequences of wire, rope or film being pulled on the trunk. Ringing appears on the tree, which impairs the rate of development of internal tissues.
  • Tugging the bark with a plastic bag.

Factors of susceptibility of plants to sunburn:

  • Newly transplanted young trees. Due to their low resistance to harmful agents. In order to settle down in a new place, it is important to develop protective mechanisms in the tree.
  • Planting trees in an open area with direct sunlight.
  • Incorrect plant care measures, this happens when excessive fertilization with artificial compounds.
  • Plants with thin bark: apple, maple, willow.
  • Soil with regular stagnation of water.

Types of diseases that arise from burns:

  • Fungal lesions.
  • Cancer due to frost. It is expressed by the beginning of the appearance of a hollow.
  • Cancer black is shown by areas of impressions of brown shades, which go over the entire trunk. After a period of time, such a crown dries up.
  • Necrotic lesion. All affected parts of the plant die off.
  • Settlement of pests in the bark of a tree.

Preventive process:

  • Whitewashing the trunk.
  • Application of special paint.
  • Covering with a film.
  • Various vaccinations.
  • Loosening the soil.

Each gardener chooses the best method for his garden.

Tree wrapping

They are engaged in this work in the autumn. This allows you to protect the bark from burns, and warm it up in winter. Possible examples of materials: mat, plank construction, mats, parchment paper, canvas. Check for insects, pests and rodents before wrapping. Particularly pay attention to dark inconspicuous places. If they decide to nail boards, the structure is built from the south side. A wooden structure can withstand up to five years.


This option is popular with experienced gardeners. A quality procedure requires experience and theoretical knowledge in order not to harm the tree. For such a manipulation, strong shoots are selected from low-value breeds. After such a fusion, the plant increases its stable properties from negative influences.

The grafting site depends on which area is damaged.

If a tree is burned, then it urgently needs to be treated. First, the places with the injured bark are removed with a knife.

Then the wound is cleaned. The burn site is disinfected with a specially prepared solution. Garden var is used as a healing medicine. You can cook it yourself or buy it ready-made in the store. A layer of var is applied to the necessary places using a spatula. Next, the trunk is pulled over with a cloth or film. After a while after the wound has healed, the protective part is removed. If necessary, the tree can be grafted. After grafting, the plant increases resistance to destructive effects, prevents further damage. The time period in which the manipulation is performed must correspond to warm weather.

This activity will not take a lot of time. The main advantage is the improvement of the quality of the tree vitality. All options are effective in their own way. That is, it does not matter which method was chosen, you can be sure that the formation of the tree will be a sign of the norm.With such care, the trees will become beautiful and fertile.

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