Redbud tree – possible infection


HI there
I live in the Etobicoke area. I have a redbud tree (about 6 years old) in the front yard (west facing so it enjoys afternoon sun). It flowered this season. However, the garbage truck inadvertently ripped a mature branch from the trunk. The remaining part of the branch was cut from the trunk. Now, 2 weeks later, the node on the trunk looks unhealthy and the “knot” is loose. I am wondering if it is infected, or if it should be sealed from infectious invaders? Or left alone? Thank you for your assistance. I have a picture (attached below).


Hello, thank you for contacting the Toronto Master Gardeners with your question.

What a shame that your lovely Redbud Cercis was damaged by the garbage truck!  By the looks of the photograph I would say that the limb does not look to be infected, it looks as if the tree is trying to “heal itself” by forming a covering .  At one time it was a common practice to cover  wounds with tar or some such, but that has fallen from favour as it seems to prevent the tree from repairing itself.  What is worrying is that you say the “knot” is loose.  I would leave it for a time and keep any eye on it, if you feel this is worsening I would contact an arborist.  I will include the link to landscape Ontario where you can find this resource.

Good luck with this!