I want to build my kid a tree house, but don't want to kill the whie oaks.Is it possible to drive 16 penny nails into 20 yr old white oak trees without killing them?
I have two ideas for other options: You could build a fort instead, just on the ground. But if your kid needs to be elevated, how about a little stilt house near or under the tree, but with access to the tree.Is it possible to drive 16 penny nails into 20 yr old white oak trees without killing them?
Based on my personal experience, Driving a nail into an oak will cause the wood around the nail to turn black and rot. Yes it will kill an oak tree.
Use some commons sense here. To kill moss and other unwanted plant life you put down powdered iron sulfate. Steel is iron and tin mixed. It will poison the tree where it goes in.
Do what I did, I used 4x4 treated post and set them in the ground and built a play house in the air for the kids. It had steps with a hand rail on one side, and a rope ladder on the other, and a rope with a pulley and bucket to get things up to the play house.
A galvanized steel nail won't kill the trees, but keep in mind that each tree grows outward as well as up. Soon the nail and the board you nailed to the tree will be embedded in the wood of the tree, even eventually will be entirely covered with wood and bark, and will be there for the rest of it's life.
Yes, you are not completing a full circle around the tree or killing the life line (root) Bob,
Nailing into oak trees will not hurt them unless they are real unhealthy to begin with.