A news release from the city reminded me that it’s time to band our trees again! The city “strongly recommends that you band your elm, ash, maple and ornamental (basswood, cherry and apple) trees as soon as possible.”
Banding trees results in some pretty unsightly trunks, but it helps prevent cankerworms from wreaking havoc on our beautiful urban forest. Over the last couple of months I’ve noticed a lot of trees tagged to be taken down, and my heart aches a little each time I spot one. Some of these trees must be decades old, and each contributes to the character of our city and the gorgeous canopies that shade our streets.
Last fall around this time, my awesome brothers-in-law did a tree banding blitz and banded each of our families’ trees. I asked them to snap some pics so I could share the process with others.
To band your tree, you’ll need foil-faced insulation, staples or heavy-duty tape for younger trees (like this one), a tub of Tree Tanglefoot and something to spread the Tanglefoot with – a putty knife or similar. I’m sure you can get these at lots of places around town, but I got my supplies at Jardins St. Leon. Here are Trees Winnipeg’s instructions for banding:
- Cut a 15 centimetre wide band of foil-faced insulation long enough to wrap around the tree trunk.
- Place the insulation side on the bark so that the foil is on the outside.
- About 1.5 metres from the ground, tightly staple the band to the tree trunk. Make sure you fill in the bark’s cracks and crevices.
- Spread a layer of Tree Tanglefoot on the band.
- Encourage you neighbours to band together to keep your neighbourhood green.
According to Trees Winnipeg, a good rule of thumb is to band the trees on the September long weekend and take them off on the May long weekend. If you want to save some time, the organization will also come and band your trees for the very reasonable price of $10-$15 per tree, depending on the size of the tree.