The Arborists from the Territory & Municipal Services Urban Forest Management Unit in the ACT shared the following recipe that has helped them bring a 200-year-old Red gum back to life after it was poisoned by a tree vandal.  Someone drilled holes into the tree & filled the holes with straight herbicide.  The tree was showing signs of dying, but the Arborists treated the tree with an antidote & have managed to save the tree.

So what is the antidote?  It’s plain old sugar & you can buy it everywhere.  “The sugar replicates the nourishment produced by the leaves & begins to nurse the tree back to health.”

Recipe –

  • Make a hole every 800mm around the tree to the drip line.
  • Mix 20-30gms sugar in 1-litre of water & pour into your holes over an area of 2 square metres.
  • Repeat the sugar mix for every 2 square metres around the tree & at least to the drip line (the outer leaves of the canopy), though it wouldn’t hurt to got further.
  • Repeat once a month.
  • You should notice new foliage starting to grow.  Keep the treatment up until your tree is healthy once again.
  • Once the tree has regained its health, bake a cake, have a few friends over & celebrate the tree & your good work.

The above recipe was pieced together from the information contained in the following article.  You will see I’ve added a couple of things – the drip line & the duration of treatment.  These are a guess on my part.  If you feel unsure, I would recommend consulting an Arborist.  I have not used this treatment myself & have relied on the information contained in the article.

This tree wasn't poisoned. It died of other causes.