Top 5 Ways to Kill Coconut Trees

Top 5 Ways to Kill Coconut Trees

While coconut trees are great to have around for their fruits, they become quite dangerous because of their shallow roots. As a result, they could uproot, especially in windy areas.

Whatever your reason may be, we’ve got the answers you’ve been searching for. Read on to learn the best ways to kill a coconut tree below! 

1. Basal Bark Treatment

Basal Bark Treatment
DifficultyVery Easy ●○○○○
SpeedSlow-acting
Things You Need• Personal protective equipment
• Herbicide
• Spray bottle or large brush
• Dye or colorant (optional)

Among all of the methods listed in this article, the basal bark treatment is by far the easiest of them all. 

All you need to do is to cover the bottom portion of your coconut tree’s stem with a generous layer of oil-soluble and surface-active herbicides.

One of the best types to use is triclopyr-based herbicides (row 51) because they can easily penetrate the bark. Afterward, they move on to different parts of the tree and work their magic. 

How To Do
1. Get your triclopyr-based herbicide ready for application.
2. Start applying an even coat to the base of your coconut tree’s stem.
Start about 12 to 15 inches from the ground, carefully making your way to the bottom. 
Avoid putting on too much as the herbicide will simply drip onto the soil. 
3. Within the next few weeks and months, pay attention to any signs that the health of your coconut tree is deteriorating.
These include:
• Discolored leaves that are usually yellow or brown
• Wilted, distorted, or curled leaves
• Sparse canopy
• Stopped growth
• Drooped branches
4. Wait for your coconut tree to rot and die before removing it completely, making sure that all of its roots are intact.

2. Herbicide Injection

Herbicide Injection
Image: Chemjet Tree Injector
DifficultyModerate ●●●○○
SpeedFast-acting
Things You Need• Personal protective equipment
• Tree injector or power drill
• Glyphosate or triclopyr-based herbicide
• Heavy-duty plastic

Now we know what you’re thinking – “How in the world will a tiny needle be able to penetrate a tree bark?” While this seems utterly impossible, we beg to differ. 

First off, have the wrong tool in mind. There are tree injector kits readily available at local gardening stores and online that can make administering chemical herbicide a breeze.

And while tree injectors aren’t that different from the normal ones that you see in hospitals, these are just as effective in administering whatever you give.

How To Do
1. Map out which areas you’ll be injecting or drilling holes.
2. Fill in your injector with herbicide and begin administering into the tree.
3. Next, cover each hole with a heavy-duty plastic to protect it from the elements.
4. Then, pay attention to any signs that the health of your coconut tree is deteriorating within the next couple of months.
These include:
• Discolored leaves that are usually yellow or brown
• Wilted, distorted, or curled leaves
• Sparse canopy
• Stopped growth
• Drooped branches
5. Wait for your coconut tree to rot and die before removing it completely, making sure that all of its roots are intact.
For this step, you can either remove it yourself or hire an arborist.
6. Then, fill in the ditch with soil.

3. Cut Stump Treatment

Cut Stump Treatment
DifficultyModerate ●●●○○
SpeedFast-acting
Things You Need• Chainsaw
• Pruning shears
• Herbicide
• Power drill
• Shovel
• Heavy-duty plastic sheet

The cut stump treatment is one of the most laborious methods on this list because it involves chopping down your coconut tree first. This alone could already take a few weeks to accomplish.

To speed up the process, you can mix in some tricks from the herbicide injection method and make a couple of incisions or holes along what’s left of the stump or any exposed roots. This way, the herbicide travels deeper into the stump’s vascular system.

By doing so, you’re effectively killing your coconut tree from the inside out. It’ll only be a matter of time before you begin to see its health decline which makes this method a viable option if you don’t mind putting your back into it.

How To Do
1. Remove any foliage from your tree using pruning shears. 
2. Cut the branches off in sections using your chainsaw. 
3. Step back to take a good look at which direction your tree is leaning towards.
4. On the side that your tree is leaning towards, make a 70-degree angled cut on the base with a chainsaw.
5. Next, position your chainsaw perpendicular to the ground and make a straight cut at the bottom of your initial 70-degree angled cut.
This should give you a triangle-shaped cut out.
6. Still holding your chainsaw perpendicular to the ground, finish your horizontal cut through the base of the tree, exiting the other side. 
7. Activate the chain break feature on your chainsaw and move far away from your tree as it falls. 
8. Now at a safe distance, wait for the tree to fall.
9. Next, apply a generous amount of herbicide onto the freshly cut stump.
10. Reapply herbicide every other day or as necessary. 
11. Wait for your coconut tree to rot and die before removing it completely, making sure that all of its roots are intact.
For this step, you can either remove it yourself or hire an arborist.
12. Then, fill in the ditch with soil.

4. Spray Foliage with Herbicide

Spray Foliage with Herbicide
DifficultyEasy ●●○○○
SpeedFast-acting
Things You Need• Personal protective equipment
• Backpack sprayer or spray bottle
• Systemic herbicide
• Dye (optional)

Just as it sounds, this technique involves using a backpack sprayer or a spray bottle to layer a generous amount of systemic herbicide onto your coconut tree’s leaves.

You can even add dye or colorant to the mix if you’ll be spraying a ton of coconut trees. This way, you’ll easily be able to identify which areas you’ve already treated.

While there isn’t a strict method to getting this done, we suggest starting at the top one leaf, slowly making your way downward to the tip. Then, moving onto the next leaf.

This way, you’re reducing wastage and ensuring that you don’t miss anything and that each part of the leaf gets an even coating. Be sure to coat both sides to boost effectiveness.

Since this method requires a spray, we don’t recommend performing this during windy or rainy weather. So be sure that your local weather forecast is bright and clear before starting.

How To Do
1. Prepare your chemical herbicide according to the label’s instructions and transfer it into your sprayer.
2. After, spray the topmost portion of your coconut tree’s leaf, coating each section completely before making your way downward to the tip.
3. Then, pay attention to any signs that the health of your coconut tree is deteriorating within the next couple of months.
These include:
• Discolored leaves that are usually yellow or brown
• Wilted, distorted, or curled leaves
• Sparse canopy
• Stopped growth
• Drooped branches
4. Wait for your coconut tree to rot and die before removing it completely, making sure that all of its roots are intact.
For this step, you can either remove it yourself or hire an arborist.
5. Then, fill in the ditch with soil.

5. Hire An Arborist

Hire An Arborist

On the lookout for the easiest way to kill a coconut tree? Well, it doesn’t get any easier than hiring someone to do the job for you!

Arborists have also gone through all the required training and earned enough experiences to become professionals in their field. 

While we highly encourage gardeners to DIY their projects, there are some that are best left to the hands of the experts. So if you’re doubtful of your ability to kill a coconut tree, this method is for you. 

FAQs

How long do coconut trees live?


In ideal environmental conditions, coconut trees can live to be up to 100 years old. In most cases, they only live to be about 60 to 80 years old.

How long will it take before my coconut tree bears fruit?


It can take anywhere between 3 to 8 years depending on what its growing conditions are like.

Can coconut trees withstand salt?


Coconut trees can withstand salty environments. In fact, they’re considered quite salt tolerant as they’re normally found growing alongside the ocean.

Can coco wood be used as firewood?


While coco wood is considered a low density material, it can still be used as firewood. However, don’t expect great insulation or long burns.

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