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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Removing Sucker Growth from African Sumac

Q. I have an African Sumac that has sprouts coming up from the roots. Besides trimming them every time they get above the soil level is there anything I can do to stop these sprouts from popping up?


Suckers coming from tree rose. These should be removed from
the roots by pulling back the soil and pulling them if they are
young enough. If older they should be cut off below ground.
A. I think I have enough information to answer. If these are naturally occurring “sprouts” and not coming from a damaged area then I would say no. However, usually if you keep these suckers controlled as soon as you see them and remove them at the trunk, not cutting them off with a shears, the number should slow down considerably.

            There are chemicals you can apply that are sprout inhibitors but I don’t think you have access to those chemicals as a consumer and not a professional. Besides, even if you did have access to them they would probably be expensive for you and a real pain to apply it. The best way to reduce the numbers is make a short term commitment to remove them as soon as you see them. Remove them directly from the trunk.

            This may mean you will have to remove some soil from the trunk and cut them as close to the trunk as you can. As you see new sprouts a couple of inches long, immediately pull them from the trunk.

            If you keep this up and do not let them get large before you remove them then I think you will see a reduction in numbers and easier maintenance. I wish there was a magic bullet for you but I doubt it.

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