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Exploring Roof Builds, Techniques and Tools


About Me

Exploring Roof Builds, Techniques and Tools

Hey everyone, my name is Patricia Brown, but everyone calls me Trish. I will use this site to explore residential roofing materials and building techniques. Roofs protect the home from the elements and provide a stylistic touch unmatched by any other feature. There are a wide range of materials used for roof construction, including copper, asphalt and tile shingles. Even the hardware varies considerably depending on which type of roof you'd like for your home. Every roofer has their own set of tools and techniques used to complete the job. Roofers may utilize high tech tools to measure grades and find leaks. I could go on forever about roofs, so I created this site for my ideas and discoveries about this fun industry. I'd love for you all to follow along with my journey through roof exploration. Welcome!

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Slime Flux And Your Trees: Advice For Gardeners

Slime flux is a relatively common problem that affects many tree species across the United States. The condition creates several unusual symptoms that may seem alarming to an unsuspecting gardener, but the problem isn't always as drastic as you may first think. Learn more about the causes and symptoms of slime flux, and find out what you may need to do to deal with the issue.

Causes

Slime flux (otherwise known as wet wood) is a bacterial disease. The bacteria that cause this problem commonly live in soil and water, but they can make their way into young or older specimens through damage or injury to the tree. It doesn't take much damage to get a slime flux infection. Something as mild as a cat scratch could allow the infection to set in, but the problem more commonly occurs after gardeners prune the tree or when boring insects damage the trunk.

The bacteria feed on the tree's sap. As the bacteria consume the sap, the tree's oxygen resources start to shrink, which causes the production of methane. As the level of methane increases, the alkalinity of the tree's sap increases and pressure builds up in the tree. The increased pressure forces infected sap out of the tree, which you can then see running down the trunk.

Signs and symptoms

Slime flux can cause alarming symptoms. According to the tree species, the color of the resulting slimy sap can vary. For example, slime flux causes a white to gray foam in the willow tree, while elm trees may experience wet brown discharge. The oozing slime usually has a foul odor that will attract a lot of insects.

The resulting slime slowly discolors the bark and any other plant tissues that it touches. In fact, the slime is often toxic to other plants and will kill grass or herbaceous plants around the base of the tree.

A slime flux infection can permanently damage the tree. Affected wood takes a long time to dry out and any discoloration is often permanent. The stain from slime flux can penetrate deep within the trunk to the tree's heartwood.

Managing an infection

A heartwood slime flux infection will generally go away without treatment. Some people believe that you can deal with the issue by drilling holes in the trunk to allow the gas and liquid to escape. This has little effect, and you will probably just give the slime more places to ooze from. Of course, you will also end up with unsightly holes in the tree trunk, too.

In some species, you may get a bark/cambial infection, which is more serious. This occurs when the bacteria infect the tissue between the bark and the wood. If you allow this infection to continue, the bacteria will eventually kill the tree. This problem is common in species like the willow.

To deal with a cambial infection, you must cut away any diseased tissue. You may need to prune off smaller diseased branches at a lateral. With larger branches, remove any discoloured bark by cutting away the diseased tissue until you can see healthy green cambium. You should aim to create an oval shape, where the long part of the oval is parallel with the infected limb. Smooth out the margins of the cut and clean the wound with rubbing alcohol or a weak bleach solution (no more than 10% bleach).

For a serious infection, it's generally better to contact a professional tree service in your area, such as Smitty's Tree Service Inc, or you may not eradicate the infection.

Prevention

There's no available treatment that can stop a slime flux infection in your trees, but you can cut the risk. Take care to avoid wounding the tree, particularly when mowing grass around the base of the tree. The blades of your mower can easily cause small lacerations that will allow bacteria to get into the sap. A tree service company can also give you advice about ways to protect your trees from other external stresses, such as pedestrians or cars.

Slime flux is a bacterial infection that can cause unpleasant symptoms. You should always take steps to protect your trees from trauma, but it's a good idea to ask for expert help if you see the distinctive signs that show you have an infected tree.