Peach tree vs. Zero turn mower

Help! I accidentally cut into my husband’s 5 year old peach tree with our zero turn mower. The cut is about 2 inches into the 5 or so inch trunk. The cut is very jagged. Is there any chance of saving this tree? I’ll post a picture if I figure out how.


Hope the picture attach. note that it was already leaning over before I nicked it.

Thanks so much for any suggestions.

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Picture will help enormously. Generally speaking, the big question is how much of the circumference of the trunk has been compromised. If you really cut 2" into a 5" diameter trunk, and left a big open, jagged wound, you’ve destroyed half the circumference. The tree tree isn’t going to die immediately, and can likely be saved as a bearing tree. The wound will begin to callous and re-unite this growign season. The “side” of the tree above the wound might experience some dieback. Next dormant season, you can graft some bridges over the wound if necessary.

Added: Just saw the picture. Would help if you could show the other (hopefully undamaged side as well, but … Oh my. I wouldn’t say the tree can’t be salvaged, and someone who likes projects might try. I’ve “saved” worse for sentimental reasons. But starting over is a more certain method for damage that extensive.


Oh, man! I remember doing that to my mom’s trees as a kid. I would clean up the cut, straighten it out, and brace it with some stakes (like splinting an arm, but also drive stakes into the ground). You might be able to do a bridge graft now and not wait for the dormant season. When that’s all done, put a cage around the bottom of the tree and mulch out at least a few feet around. Will protect against mowers and voles. Good luck!


“Well honey when i got home someone had stolen our mower and went out joyriding in the orchard see…”

You are really sweet for coming on here to try and fix this situation by the way, a lot of times we just want people to care and try, if he grows fruit he is used to losing fruit too!


That looks like a great opportunity to practice bridge grafting. I might try it with cuttings from the same tree if I didn’t have anything compatible that is dormant.

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Can we see the whole tree so we can have a better idea including how much it leans.

If worse comes to worst, you can tell your husband that you have found this site and there are a lot of excellent recommendations for his new peach tree.


Well one plus is I think you did this during spring instead of mid summer when the tree is fully leafed out.

I’m optimistic that the tree will turn out just fine but you may have set it back by a season of growth.

You will know pretty quick if the leaves start to wilt and drop. If that happens excessively it might be best to remove 50% of the leaves or more.

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Here’s an idea . . .
You can buy him a new 6’ one, at ‘Fast Growing Trees’, for over $100 bucks . . . yank out the old one . . . then replace it with the new one in the middle of the night - and he may never even know what happened!!!

Just kidding! This is a reference to a post I just finished posting on ‘Best Place to Buy Trees’ thread.
But, hey . . . . it just might work.

It’ll only let me upload one picture. : (

Thank you all so very much for all of your comments, ideas, etc. This is all really good advice! I’ll be sharing all of this with him and we’ll see if we can save it. I’ll keep you updated and hopefully will be able to upload more pictures as it heals.

I was already doing research on buying a new one! lol!

Best place to buy is Vaughn nursery in TN, small trees but very reasonable price and large varieties.

Peach trees grow like weeds and that is not an exaggeration.

The more you read and post, the system will raise your level. You should be able to post more pics.

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