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How to Stake a Birch Tree

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How to Stake a Birch Tree

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Overview

Ideally, a tree, including a birch tree, should not be staked. Over time, it can make it weaker and unable to stand on its own, especially during difficult weather conditions. However, sometimes staking is in order, such as when young trees are planted in areas of high winds or are top-heavy. Staking in these circumstances should help keep the tree upright, but at the same time, still allow freedom for the tree to sway and move. According to Oklahoma State University's Cooperative Extension Service, staking should be removed within two years.

Step 1

Hammer in two or three 2-inch by 2-inch stakes evenly around a young birch tree and about 12 to 15 inches into the solid soil (mulch does not count). The stakes should be far enough away to avoid damaging the root ball and so the tree does not bend on the wind and touch the stakes; usually about 3 to 5 feet away will suffice. Use three stakes only in areas of high winds. Stakes should be about 2 to 3 feet taller than the first branch of the birch tree.

Step 2

Prepare the ties. You will need one for each stake. The ties should be broad and smooth, and not wire or twine, which will harm the bark of a birch tree and cause irreversible damage. Plastic or fiber strips--also called webbing--used to make chairs are ideal. Sew on grommets to both ends of all the ties if they are not already in place, like how chair webbings often are. Each tie should be large enough to wrap around the tree and both ends to meet at the stake.

Step 3

Wrap the ties--one above the other--around the trunk of the tree, starting about 6 to 12 inches beneath the first branch. Then use wire or twine to tie knots onto the grommets and to tie onto the stakes. The ties should be close to level from the tree trunk to the stakes.

Things You'll Need

  • Stakes
  • Hammer
  • Plastic or fabric ties
  • Grommets
  • Twine or wire

References

  • Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service: Planting Trees and Shrubs
  • North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service: Planting Techniques for Trees and Shrubs
Keywords: stake trees, birch trees, staking trees

About this Author

Melissa Lewis graduated from the University of Maryland Baltimore County and is a former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist. She has written over 20 episodes for the radio drama entitled "A Work in Progress." She also writes for several online outlets, including Gardenguides, Travels and Examiner, and is currently finalizing a movie script to be filmed in 2010.

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