So 3 days, a few ripped blisters and some very sore muscles later I managed to pull this giant beech out of the front yard of my friends house. First off, holy moly that wood was extremely dense! It was obviously a pretty severe root cut but I managed to save a somewhat decent amount of dirt and roots directly under the trunk. It has a copious amount of buds so it seems about as healthy as it could be. I have plans in the future to recut the trunk chop at an angle and hollow out a portion that is outlined by some natural deadwood that goes down the trunk. I think it could be a pretty powerful composition. But first, I need this thing to survive! Any advice would be appreciated. I’m particularly interested to see what everyone’s opinion is on whether I should tent it or not, as well as if I should reduce any of the smaller insignificant branching prior to bud push to limit the amount of foliage the tree has to support. Thanks in advance!!
It IS a monster! Hope it survives for you, what substrate did you use? I have tended towards pure pumice over the years. I’ve never tented any of the deciduous trees I collected, the only tree I wish I had was a Yew of about this size and root mass, whic pushed buds then slowly failed. Wish I was experienced enough to offer advice with certainty.
I used coarse perlite for this one. I had it laying around from a past project. I’m going on a larch/spruce collecting trip this spring and have a bunch of volcanite pumice lined up for them. Just need to screen out the fines. I had a hemlock that I collected last year that I also wish I had tented, the exact same thing happened. From what I’ve read, deciduous are somewhat more forgiving when it comes to root pruning. So I’m crossing my fingers that what I was able to preserve was enough.
Harry Harrington advises on putting the whole thing in a big plastic bag to increase the moisture level. In addition he has his collected trees in a polytunnel for the same reason.
I’ve watched a few of his videos and noticed that. I’m leaning towards trying it. I’ve asked around on a few forums and have gotten mixed answers. Hard to know what to listen to sometimes haha.
That looks like it has a very nice root flair.
I’d drill some holes in that container. It (the container) looks too big for the root mass.
Drainage is important.
I wouldn’t reduce any branches/buds; the foliage mass doesn’t look heavy at all.
If you’re in Maine it can still get quite cold, so you might want to keep it from freezing.
From personal experience, root reduction on Beech is a somewhat different animal
from other deciduous trees, i.e. tread carefully. If you get it through the summer it should survive.
Hey Bill, I had drilled a ton of big drainage holes so I think it should be set on that. Got it onto a heat mat to warm up the roots a few degrees too. I’ve been keeping an eye on the temps for sure, I’ll have to shuffle a few of my trees if it gets too cold again, I’m ready for spring! Thanks for the advice, I appreciate it.