Photo by Chal Landgren, OSU.


  • Equipment and tools

Signs & Symptoms

  • Broken lower branches and areas of dead foliage where tires and equipment have run over or forced branches apart
  • Bark/trunk damage (trees on row ends) that looks like cankers with dead branches above the damaged area
  • Damaged foliage at a consistent height and side on rows where equipment has passed and exhaust fumes or heat have caused injury
  • Split branch ends from dull shearing knives or cutting tools that do not cut cleanly. Branch ends to shatter and die.

Where to Look

  • Trees at row ends
  • Lower branches; branches at equipment level

Similar Symptoms As

  • Vertebrate damage
  • Drought

Management Options

  • Lay out field to leave enough space on row ends and between rows to allow for tractor turns and passage next to full-grown trees.
  • Shield tractor tires and equipment to allow for passage between the rows.
  • Minimize trips through the rows during bud break, as new growth is easily broken.
  • Prevent prolonged contact of foliage with exhaust.
  • Maintain sharp shearing and cutting tools to ensure well-cut branch ends.
  • Use basal pruning, which can minimize lower branch damage.