How to Paint the Base of Fruit Trees


Whitewashing fruit tree trunks prevents sun damage on exposed tree trunks and branches. Young trees, cold-damaged trees and bark newly exposed by pruning is especially susceptible to sun-scald. The white paint reflects paint away from the the trunk and protects it from heat in the early spring.

Step 1

Mix 1 gallon of white exterior latex paint with 1 gallon of water. For rough bark, add more water to a portion of the paint for the first coat.

Step 2

Stir the paint often to maintain a smooth mixture.

Step 3

Paint or spray the exposed trunk and lower branches. Avoid getting paint on the leaves.

Step 4

Allow the paint to dry, then apply a second coat.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 gallon white latex paint
  • Mixing bucket
  • Paintbrush or paint sprayer


  • University of California Extension: Whitewash Tree Trunks to Prevent Winter Sun-scald
  • University of California Extension: Pruning Overgrown Deciduous Trees
Keywords: paint fruit trees, whitewash fruit trees, preventing sun-scald

About this Author

Diane Watkins has been writing since 1984, with experience in newspaper, newsletter and web content. She writes two electronic newsletters and content around the web. Watkins has a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from Clemson University. She has taken graduate courses in biochemistry and education.