What Are Tree Burls?

Does one of your trees have a peculiar knot abnormally growing along its trunk? If so, your tree likely has a burl. However, before you contact an arborist and ask, “What are tree burls, and how do I remove them?” it’s important to have a basic understanding of the bizarre tree knots. 

That’s why our professionals at Ace Tree Service are here to explain tree burls and their effect on trees.

Ace Tree Service is Citrus Heights’ premier destination for professional tree maintenance and removal services. If you need a reliable tree service in Citrus Heights, California, that always puts your needs first, contact our arborists.

what are tree burls

What Is a Tree Burl?

Burls are tree growth abnormalities that typically form around a tree’s base. Although scientists haven’t uncovered the root cause of tree burls, many believe they develop when trees experience severe stress that disrupts their growth hormones, creating abnormal cell development. The cells generate unusual growths known as burls. 

Burls can develop on any tree species but primarily affect:

  • Ash trees
  • Oak trees
  • Cherry trees
  • Maple trees
  • Walnut trees
  • Elm trees

Although most burls develop along a tree’s trunk and limbs, some can grow underground. Experts call these burls lignotubers. 

Lignotubers are much larger than traditional burls and can weigh over 500 tons. They can also reach up to 45 feet in diameter. 

Can Burls Harm Trees?

When asking, “What are tree burls?” most people want to know if they’re harmful.

Although burls might hinder a tree’s appearance, they won’t impact its health. They often act like tree calluses and develop over wounds to prevent further damage. Although removing them might improve the tree’s visual appeal, it often causes more harm than good and increases the chances of disease and pest infestations.

Many woodworkers seek burlwood due to its unique grain patterns and captivating color formations. Burlwood colors range from dark brown to light chocolate and have unreplicable grains, making burlwood one of the most sought-after woodworking materials.

Burlwood uses range from veneer panels to instrument making. Below are a few things woodworkers create from tree burls:

  • Furniture slabs
  • Inserts
  • Cutting boards
  • Bowls 
  • Paper
  • Barkcloth (a type of fabric)

Understanding the Difference Between Tree Burls and Burr Knots

Many Citrus Heights residents confuse tree burls with burr knots. Although these timber anomalies look similar, they affect trees differently. 

Unlike tree burls, burr knots are incredibly harmful to trees. They are relatively large masses of root initials and can significantly weaken a tree’s structure. Burr knots also cause stunted growth and make great entry points for tree pests and diseases. 

You must remove burr knots before they adversely affect the tree’s health and structural integrity. However, it’s best to contact a professional arborist to eliminate the burr knot and minimize trauma.

Our team at Ace Tree Service can help you identify burr knots and tree burls and will handle all your tree care needs at a price that won’t break the bank.

Contact Ace Tree Service for Exceptional Tree Maintenance and Removal Services in Citrus Heights, California

Next time you notice strange bark formations along a tree and ask yourself, “What are tree burls?” contact Ace Tree Service. We will explain everything you need to know about tree burls while ensuring your trees maintain superior health throughout the year. Our arborists have over 15 years of industry experience and can complete even the most strenuous projects while providing unmatched customer service along the way.

Whether you need help identifying tree burls or want to know what causes black spots on tree leaves, we are always here for you.

Give us a call at (916) 934-3204 and receive unmatched tree care in Citrus Heights, California, today!