If you ever watched the movie "Ghost Busters" then you have heard the saying of being "slimed". My poor sycamore tree has been slimed by slim flux. Slim flux or wet wood begins when the tree is damaged by poor pruning, freezing, broken limbs or other damage to the tree. Bacteria enters the open wound. Once the bacteria enters the wound it inhabits the tree. It can be inside the tree for a long time and not be noticed until the bacteria produces enough gas that it causes the sap to flow out the wounded area. Over time the sap continues to run and it turns a gray to white color on both sides of the wet area. It is not very attractive to look at on the tree and the ooze can have a bad odor to it. Once your tree has slim flux, there is nothing you can do to control it. At one time, people would insert drain tubes into the tree, but this is no longer done. Trees that can get slim flux are maples, mulberry, elms, paper birch, red buds, walnuts and sycamore trees. What can you do to prevent slim flux from infecting your tree? The best thing you can do is to protect your tree from anything that can damage the trunk, branches or root system. Always use the correct procedure to prune branches from your trees. You do not want to get "slimed".
The Creative Gardener
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