En Español

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - May 18, 2013

From: Red Creek, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Diseases and Disorders, Trees
Title: Bark splitting in old tulip tree in Red Creek, NY.
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

Hello, We have a tulip tree that has some bark splitting I guess I would call it. The tree is older and very tall. On the north side of it starting at the bottom of the trunk to about 8-9 feet up it, a strip of the bark only about a half inch wide has peeled away, it goes straight up the tree trunk. Have you any idea what would cause this. This tree is near the Lake Ontario shoreline and is subject to a lot of wind.

ANSWER:

The Tulip Tree Liriodendron tulipifera (Tulip tree) is a very desirable shade or ornamental tree. Even though it is sometimes called Tulip Poplar it is not in the genus or family of the  other poplars (Genus Populus in the family Salicaceae). it is in the family Magnoliaceae. This link to the Forest Service has general information about the Tulip Tree.

 Having bark peel off a tree is of some concern. The Tulip Tree is relatively free of pest problems, but is susceptible to canker diseases that are described in this link to USDA.

My suggestion is to have a knowledgeable person examine your tree to determine what the problem is . This person could be someone from the Wayne County office of Cornell University Cooperative Extension,  or a certified arborist.

 

From the Image Gallery


Tulip tree
Liriodendron tulipifera

Tulip tree
Liriodendron tulipifera

More Trees Questions

Plants for a children's playground
April 20, 2015 - We have extensive native gardens on our 2 acre property, but my children want a garden of their own with plants they can hide under and that are good for imaginative play. Are there any native plants...
view the full question and answer

Brown spots on young redbuds in Lincoln TX
August 01, 2010 - I have lined my driveway in Lee County Texas with Red bud trees purchased both in Dripping Springs and in College Station. The 14 trees are of varying ages and heights (planted during the fall and wi...
view the full question and answer

Possible sawflies on loblolly pine (Pinus taeda)
May 03, 2011 - My pine trees looked great a week ago, now one from top to bottom is almost without needles. It is covered with greenish caterpillars. They have several stripes down their back . Could these be saw fl...
view the full question and answer

Fast-growing tree for privacy in Berkeley, CA
July 30, 2013 - Help. I need fast growing tree for backyard privacy. Where in Berkeley is there a tree nursery to Buy Pittosporum trees? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Why are my potted Prunus caroliniana plants shedding leaves in LA, CA?
May 02, 2011 - I bought Prunus caroliniana in pots to use as privacy fence on my balcony. Have had them for about 6 weeks and they are shedding a lot of leaves. Some leave are drying out and others have what ...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center