Why paint tree trunks white?

Trees are incredibly adaptable, providing protection for us and a host of other species.

Young trees need time to get stronger, they need a little help from us to survive the first few years.

Painting tree trunks is an ancient method of sealing and protecting them.


Why are the trees painted white?

Painting tree trunks white is a method of protecting young trees often found in orchards and on farms.

It has several purposes, but the main one is to prevent the tender new bark from cracking and splitting, which can allow the introduction of diseases, insects and fungi.

It is also useful for controlling insect infestations and can prevent some borers.

There is some debate about the effectiveness of painting tree trunks (I recommend this article). It’s true that it keeps the scorching rays of the sun away from the tender crust, but the wrong product can do more harm than good.

This technique can be beneficial on hardwoods that lose their protective foliage in winter.


White paint for tree trunks.

The right product for painting tree trunks is water-based latex paint. The paint should be thinned with one gallon of latex mixed with four to five liters of water.

A Cornell University study found that a fully painted application provides better protection against borers.

Another formulation is one-third water, latex paint and joint compound, useful for sun protection. Never use oil-based paint, which will not allow the tree to breathe. If rodents, such as rabbits, are munching on your saplings, add rodent repellent to the white trunk paint to prevent them.

While some experts say to only use interior paint, others recommend the opposite.

In fact, as long as it’s latex paint, either should work fine.

However, keep in mind that some paints may contain additives that can be harmful to plants, so check first.

In fact, looking for an organic-based one may be the best option.

Also, other than white, you can use any light colored paint and get the same results – just avoid darker shades which will absorb heat and cause more problems.

Another option is to use lime, mixed with water. Mix slaked lime and water in a bucket until a paste is thick enough to adhere to the crust.

How to paint tree bark.

Once you’ve mixed the paint, the best method of application is with a brush.

Tests indicate that the spray does not provide adequate protection and does not adhere as well to the bark.

A single coat is sufficient, except in the most severe conditions.

Painting tree trunks white is a simple, non-toxic way to protect them from a number of different problems.

The process is simple, inexpensive, and only needs to be done once a year in areas with extreme weather conditions.

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