Splits in Bark .... Why???
Earlier this summer I wrote about the damages suffered by my fig trees resulting from a freak hail storm that hit the Bronx, area of NYC. As I mentioned in those postings, figs were badly bruised, and many leaves were shredded off the trees by the large hailstones. My trees were a pitiful mess, but they recovered....I think.
About two weeks after the storm I noticed small vertical splits along the bark,... (not too many, but enough of them to make me wonder)... on many of the branches and along the trunk, and usually along the upper surfaces of the branches that would be exposed to the sun, rain, hailstones, etc. The splits are anywhere from 1/2" to 2" long, and about 1/16" wide, and always parallel to the length, never across the grain line. I'm wondering if the hailstones hit the bark with such force that they damaged it to the point where it weakened and then split open. The splits almost look like someone slit the bark with a thin knife. I have never seen this condition on my trees before and I've been growing since 2007. Also, these cracks are not oozing, look dry, and don't look diseased. Only the bark is split, and not the underlying wood. The branches with cracks all produced fruit, and the trees look healthy.
Has anyone ever had this experience with the bark on their fig trees? I hope this condition doesn't get any worse, and I hope next year the splits will heal. Do you think I should rub cinnamon into these cracks and seal them with a sticky, soft wax?
I heard of "Plumber's Crack", but what gives with my trees? Huh?