Mice Destroying Fruit Trees in the Wetaskiwin Region
Berta Briggs owner of Arber Greenhouses is respected for her knowledge of plants and also for her vast selection of varieties in her green house. But this year Berta was a little disappointed and surprised at the of loss of unprotected fruit trees. She certainly isn’t alone. She gets a few calls a day with inquiries about damage to tree bark on fruit trees. Her response is, “that if the entire bark around the circumference of tree has been chewed away, the tree may flower and bear fruit but will not survive beyond July”.
Arber Greenhouses, itself, has lost 10-15 trees over the winter due to mice chewing the bark off the trunk of trees. Mice feed on apple trees of all ages and may also damage other fruit plants. When a mouse chews the bark at the base of an apple tree, it causes a type of damage called girdling. Bark completely removed around the trunk or roots by gnawing of the rodents causes death or severe plant weakening.
Removing a strip of bark one-quarter of the diameter of the tree damages the tree, but it usually survives. If the damage encircles the entire base of the tree, it will certainly die. The layer of tissue just beneath the bark is called the phloem. This layer transports nutrients between the leaves and roots. When the bark is removed, the flow is interrupted and the roots die.
For more information go to http://www.arbergreenhouses.com.