[NAFEX] Fruit Tree and goat care

K Q kumquat at operamail.com
Thu Jul 13 11:16:19 EDT 2006

Dear Mr. Moyer,

I have read accounts of folks who make a thickish slurry of goat manure and water. They then coat the tree trunk with that perhaps from ground level to 5 feet up. Word has it that goats absolutely will not bother the trunk after this treatment. Wholistic, organic, and it recycles something!

I had a chestnut seedling of around 6 feet tall once that the cat had used for a scratching post, then a baby puppy tore strips of bark up to around 4 feet from ground level. Really sickened me. Imagine half the bark gone from a tree like this. I read on the net to do nothing for the wound, that nature would not like it, real arborists do not recommend coatings, etc etc. So for the first 3 years that is what I followed. However, the winter rains would wet the wood and it started growing fungus and tiney mushrooms. I knew this was not good, so I coated the whole wound, from ground level clear up to the top with a good grade of silicon caulking rated against UV radiation, it was clear in color. Did it when the wood was bone dry in the summer. Last winter, the wood was not whetted, there were no more signs of fungus and mushrooms growing, and the long wound is slowly growing back together as I keep the tree well watered during the summer months. I would advise you to let that wood of yours dry for a year, and next summer (2007) give it a generous coating of silicone caulk. Works real good.

Kenneth Q.

Message: 1
Date: Tue, 11 Jul 2006 10:41:42 -0400
From: "Richard Moyer" <ramoyer at gmail.com>
Subject: [NAFEX] Fruit Tree and goat care
To: nafex at lists.ibiblio.org
	<619330e60607110741hd84bd01u105e49ddbd3f202b at mail.gmail.com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"

Advice requested:
We just bought 2 Nigerian Dwarf does, who are meeting our fresh milk needs.

One went from the milking stand this morning to eating some weeds and
hanging grapeleaves, which is what we like.

When I looked up again, she had just pulled 2 big hunks of bark (4-5" long)
from a 3" persimmon sapling, which we had recently topworked.  That tree and
two others like it are on my to do list to protect today, with 2"x4"
fencing--somehow she knew!  (She, so far, had avoided debarking all other
saplings in their woodlot.)

I put the goats in their fence, wrapped the persimmon trunk in parafilm and
shaded it with cardboard.
Any other advice on care of this trunk?  1/3-1/2 of the bark is gone in 2
spots on the south side.

Second question, for those with goat experience:
Do we assume that goats will strip bark, anytime, any season, on any tree?
If there an age/size of fruit tree that is ever avoided when plenty of other
browse and concentrate is around?  Or do I assume that any fruit tree, any
size, may be debarked at anytime, thereby always fencing them out?

Richard Moyer
East TN

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