Basal bark treatment is a very cost effective method of controlling Wilding Conifers and Woody Weeds. X-Tree Basal is a ready to use, stable, low toxicity, convenient basal bark pre-mixture that has been used for 12 months in NZ and is resulting in excellent wilding conifer and woody weed control . X-tree is used to chemically ring bark unwanted woody weeds.
Applying herbicides in any natural environment needs careful management to reduce any off target damage to native vegetation or contamination of waterways. X-Tree Basal’s formulation contains the active ingredient Triclopyr which is short-lived and has low environmental impact. The carrier oil is bio-diesel and it contains a unique penetrant system to ensure penetration of the bark of the target weeds.
The basal bark method ensures off target environmental damage potential is minimised because the tree trunks get treated with a fine braided trickle flow that can be accurately aimed to encircle the trunk. A little X-Tree goes a long way, making for a very cost effective solution.
The product is very versatile and, whilst being a highly efficient wilding conifer solution, it is an ideal product for every farmer to have in his shed for spot treatment and control of isolated gorse and other woody weeds. It can also be used by Regional Councils, contractors and forestry companies who might want to thin or remove unwanted tree and woody weed species from plantations or other areas.
Most wilding pine species are controlled with X-Tree Basal. Basal bark tree treatments are also effective on other unwanted tree and shrub species including Alders, Briars, Buddleia, Blackberry, Gorse, Hawthorn, Holly, Poplars, Rowan, Wattles, Willows and Woolly Nightshade. There are a few other species like Cotoneaster that may require a second treatment of X-Tree Basal for the control of surviving plants from the initial treatment.
Ground-based basal bark treatments are applied by knapsack, with a lance which has a single hollow cone nozzle. The base of a wilding tree is treated at a low pressure with the bark being completely circled around the tree (ring barked). As a general rule, the height that needs to be treated is at least twice to three times that of the diameter of the trunk. X-Tree Basal works consistently on smaller trees with trunk diameters up to 30cm diameter. However, for larger trees with thicker bark the trunk needs to be treated from the base up to two metres from the ground and may need retreatment depending on the species.
Rhys Barrier from Fish and Game Nelson was involved in treating crack willow trees in the Marlborough Para wetlands with X -Tree Basal in February this year. By mid April these trees were dying with all the foliage black and shrivelled. Rhys’ comments on X-Tree Basal treating trees was that it was at least twice as fast as the cut and paste or drilling and filling methods they have previously used. He said he was very impressed at how rapid X-Tree Basal killed these problem trees and another advantage was that it could be applied to trees all year round where other treatments had to be applied in spring.
Cut-stump method X-Tree Basal can also be used as a ‘Cut Stump Treatment’ when wilding trees are removed by chainsaw or a cutting bar. It is applied around the stump face edges and down the remaining bark area to ground level, to ensure there is no re-growth.
Aerial basal bark method Aerial basal bark applications (ABBA) by helicopter with a hand held lance out the door has also been successful and is ideal where access is dangerous and difficult. Specialist operators should be used for this task.
Phil Packham, (helicopter pilot from Amuri Helicopters in Hanmer Springs) has been using X-Tree Basal for ABBA Wilding Pine control operations this year. His first application was in January on Douglas Fir, Pinus contorta and Pinus sylvestris (Scots Pine) wilding trees that were 3 – 4 metres high. As of May this year, Phil is pleased to report that they are all dead.
Phil also applied another ABBA earlier this year at Mt Thomas in Canterbury and the wildings are quickly dying off. Phil stated that X-Tree Basal odour is more tolerable than diesel based basal bark mixtures, which have an odour which is quite nauseous. Another positive aspect of X-Tree Basal he likes is its stability, which doesn’t require constant shaking to stop it separating. This was a problem he had with previous diesel based basal bark treatments.
In conclusion, X-Tree Basal has been nicknamed ‘ The X-Treeminator’ as it is rapidly earning a growing reputation as the ‘go to’ product for Woody Tree control.
X-Tree Basal is available nationally from PGGWrightson Ltd. and selected rural re-sellers.
For more information on X-Tree Basal go to www.etec.co.nz and download the X-Tree Basal
TechNote or contact Etec Crop Solutions Ltd on 09-574 5401