HELP!! Deer damage to Schefflera Taiwaniana :-(

Discussion in 'Outdoor Gardening in the Pacific Northwest' started by Zig7, Nov 11, 2014.

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  1. Zig7

    Zig7 Member

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    Hi horticultural friends,
    I hope someone out there can help.
    For the past 3 years I have been lovingly tending a Schefflera Taiwaniana cutting that I got from a plantsman who brought it back from Taiwan. It's grown from 10 " tall to almost five feet tall in this time. It's a gorgeous plant that I had in my Vancouver garden but I dug it up and potted it when I moved to Victoria this summer.

    One thing I didn't have in Vancouver were marauding bands of deer that would cut across my yard. I was relieved that the does and her babies left the leaves alone, but shocked when a buck passed through for the first time 10 days ago and chose to rub his antlers against the stem of my potted Scheflerra. I discovered the damage last week and the damage was comprehensive: complete girdling.

    This Scheflerra was SO HAPPY in its location, waiting for me to decide where to plant it. The leaves were so perky and jubilantly reaching up to the sky... But there really is no hope for it now, even though it is continuing to put on a good show by keeping its leaves relatively upward facing... I can only believe the damage is complete and it's just a matter of time before the plant succumbs to starvation and/or disease without its xylem, phloem and bark.

    Does anyone out there know how I can try to save any parts of this single trunked plant? Should I cut off the top and put it in water and hope it sends out roots? It was suggested that I cut a notch into the roots and that that might inspire a new sprouting... could anyone suggest an illustrated "how to" that shows me 'how to'?!

    Is it possible to get multiple cuttings from the leaves, given the unique way the leaves emerge from the single trunk (similar to a fatsia japonica)?

    I sincerely appreciate any advice you can offer. I really am so, so sad about the imminent loss of this very special shrub. I actually feel gutted when I am close to this plant. :-(

    Thank you!

    PS I will try to attach photos.
     

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    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 17, 2017
  2. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    If it hasn't wilted yet I wouldn't assume it is going to collapse later. Concentrate on excluding the deer, wait, watch and see what the shefflera does.
     
  3. Zig7

    Zig7 Member

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    Third year update: as per Ron B's advice, I concentrated on excluding the deer (by putting up a fence the next spring) and watched what the schefflera did. To my delight, although I eventually cut it below the "girdle", indeed it is now a thriving multi-branched shrub! Good things do come to those who wait (at least this time!!). Cheers.

    These images from May 2017
    IMG_5239.JPG IMG_5130.JPG IMG_5131.JPG

    This one from June 2017.
    IMG_5701.JPG
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2017
  4. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Thanks for the update, @Zig7. How nice that your plant pulled through. I love seeing the young foliage on this.
     
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  5. Zig7

    Zig7 Member

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    Yes, I love the young foliage too. Made my heart sing to see multiple new stems popping up so enthusiastically!
     

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