How to get rid of cedar trees

Controlling Eastern Red-cedar, a Common Noxious Weed

Eastern Red-cedar trees (Juniperus virginiana) have become more abundant in many fencerows and pastures. This now very common tree was once limited to rocky bluffs, deep canyons and other areas where fire did not historically occur. Since the beginning of European settlement in North America, fire has been suppressed enabling Eastern Red-cedar (cedar) to expand its range outside of these protected areas.

Many people have the misconception that trees equal wildlife habitat. Unfortunately, when we are talking about cedars in southern Oklahoma and northern Texas, this is not always the case. In 1950 (Bidwell 1993), cedars covered approximately 1.5 million acres in Oklahoma. By 1985 this had risen to an estimated 3.5 million acres and by 1996 an estimated 6 million acres (Engle et al., 1996).

Cedars are native, but have become invasive and, when left unmanaged, have the ability to form dense stands. These stands can be viewed as monocultures - plant communities dominated by one species. Native rangelands, however are composed of a diversity of many native species of grasses, forbs, shrubs and trees. Once this diversity is lost, forage production can decrease and wildlife habitat quality declines.

Bidwell (1993) looked at the loss of herbaceous production after cedars were mechanically cut down. Cutting cedars below their lowest growing limbs kills them, but a dead tree lying on the ground still occupies about 70 percent of the area that it did when standing. Leaving cut trees where they fall can reduce access to forage for cattle, bison or horses, but can offer escape cover for many wildlife species.

There are three methods to control or kill cedars: fire, mechanical and chemical.

Fire originally controlled cedars. With adequate fuel and under safe prescribed burning conditions, fire will control most cedars less than 6 feet tall. Unfortunately, many cedars have grown so large that prescribed fire is no longer an effective management tool. Prescribed fire is now viewed as a maintenance tool to control new and young cedars, but not the best choice to kill larger, established trees. For larger trees, chemical or mechanical control methods are usually best.

Common chemical recommendations include Velpar®, Tordon® and Pronone® Power Pellets. Velpar® and Tordon® are liquid chemicals that can be applied to the soil under cedars. Tordon® can also be applied to the foliage of an individual tree to reduce exposure to desirable plants. Labels for Velpar® and Tordon® do not recommend use on cedar trees larger than 15 feet tall. Pronone® Power Pellets have the same active ingredient that is in Velpar®, but in a pellet form. Pellets are placed under a tree (one to two per inch of stem diameter) and require ¼ to ½ inch of rainfall to dissolve into the soil. All of the above chemicals can kill other woody plants in the immediate area. These chemicals are best used when only the target species will be exposed to the herbicide. When using herbicides, always read and follow the label instructions.

Mechanical methods include chain saws, bow saws, lopping shears, axes, dozers and skid loaders with shears or saws. Hand tools are very selective, but are labor intensive. Dozers can be effective; however, they can cause a great deal of soil disturbance. Skid loaders with shears or saws are selective and very effective.

Regardless of the control method, try targeting "the women and children first" to maximize efficiency. One female cedar tree can produce thousands of seeds and younger trees are easier to control. Cedar has its place, but it has started to take more than its fair share.


Bidwell, T. G. 1993. Eastern Redcedar Ecology and Management. OSU Extension Facts 2868. Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service.

Engle, D.M., T.G. Bidwell, and M.E. Moseley. 1996. Invasion of Oklahoma Rangelands and Forests by Eastern Redcedar and Ashe Juniper. Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service. Circular E-947.

Invasive: Eastern Red Cedar Tree

In Oklahoma, Texas, and Kansas, the eastern red-cedar (Juniperus virginiana L.) has substantially reduced livestock production and profitability by 75% in the rangelands it invades.

Originally limited to rocky bluffs and other areas where fire couldn't reach them, eastern red-cedar tree populations expanded with the introduction of European land management practices to the United States. A decrease in controlled burns allowed forests to spread, including this now-invasive species. It extended from its native Kansas to nearby states, where it overtakes prairie plant life.

If your property has eastern red-cedar, you might know about this tree's tenacity all too well. It can grow year-round in temperatures above 40 degrees Fahrenheit and in a variety of precipitation conditions. As a result, these trees take the resources that native grasses need to live, killing off valuable grazing land. Fortunately, you have a variety of options for removing this invasive tree from your property.


How to Identify an Eastern Red-Cedar Tree

The eastern red-cedar is column-like or cone shape and usually measures 30 to 40 feet in height. You can assess if your land has eastern red-cedar by looking for these traits:

  • Dark green to blue-green foliage: Red-cedar trees can have one of two leaf shapes — scale-like and dull-pointed, or scaleawe-like and pointing away from the twig. Their twigs have a square shape and tiny buds.
  • Reddish-brown bark and wood: Both the bark and wood from a red-cedar tree have a distinct reddish-brown color. An eastern red-cedar's bark is thin and peels off in long, shred-like strips. Red-cedars have moderately soft wood.
  • Cone-shaped fruit: While we call the Juniperus virginiana L. the eastern red-cedar, it actually falls under the Juniper genus because it has a fleshy, berry-like fruit instead of a woody one. Many birds use this fruit as a food source and spread the seeds throughout their habitats.

Photo Credit: Gatehouse Media, LLC. - The Oklahoman


Types of Destruction Caused by

Eastern red-cedar trees damage the surrounding grasslands by:

  • Intercepting rainfall: The dense canopies created by red-cedar trees prevent precipitation from reaching the grass below. Studies estimate the eastern red-cedar can block anywhere from 25% to 60% of bulk rainfall in an area. These numbers vary based on the grass species involved.
  • Consuming large amounts of water: Eastern red-cedar trees have a long-standing reputation as water guzzlers. Research suggests they drink 24 liters (~6 gallons) of water per day, but the largest red-cedars can consume as much as 50 to 60 liters (~13 to 16 gallons). These high consumption levels take away water that native grasses need to stay alive.
  • Fueling wildfires: Many features of the eastern red-cedar make it vulnerable to wildfires. Its flammable foliage and thin bark catch fire easily. The red-cedar also contains a variety of oils that make it quick to ignite. Cone-shaped red-cedars increase their fire risk by keeping more of their foliage close to the ground. A burning red-cedar tree can spread thousands of embers downwind, increasing the rate of a wildfire's spread.


Eastern Red-Cedar Trees as an Invasive Species in the Green Glacier

In the central states and Great Plains, range specialists have noticed the increasingly harmful effects of cedar and juniper trees. Their rapid spread on rangelands is known as the "Green Glacier" by some academics. Two major forces in the Green Glacier include the Rocky Mountain juniper (Juniperus scopulorum) and the eastern red-cedar. Invasive junipers and cedars have a similar negative impact on rangelands as eastern red-cedars, limiting available grasslands for grazing. By controlling the eastern red-cedar and the Green Glacier, you can keep grass alive for your livestock.

Natural distribution map for Juniperus virginiana var. virginiana (eastern redcedar) shown in green and Juniperus virginiana var. silicicola (southern redcedar) shown in red. (Elbert L. Little, Jr./U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service/Wikimedia Commons)

How to Get Rid of Red-Cedar Trees and Stop the Green Glacier

You can remove eastern red-cedar trees using one of three methods:

  • Fire: Under safe conditions, prescribed burning effectively removes eastern red-cedars under 6 feet tall. However, it does not work as well for larger cedars, making this approach feasible only for new and younger trees. Controlled fires also create the risk of thrown embers that could endanger the area.
  • Chemical: You can use a variety of liquid and pellet herbicides to kill red-cedars by applying them to the area of the tree that the package specifies. Depending on the brand, an herbicide may only work for red-cedar trees under 15 feet tall. Chemical treatments can also put surrounding plants at risk, so they work best when you know they will only affect red-cedars.
  • Mechanical: If you have the right equipment, mechanical red-cedar removal can deliver the best results out of these three options. Heavy equipment such as a skid-steer can eliminate the intensive labor required with hand tools while increasing your removal power.

Mechanical Removal With an Attachment: The Commonsense Choice

We recommend mechanical removal over chemical or fire methods for landowners who have heavy equipment like a skid-steer.

Skid-steers, excavators, tractors, and other machines that use attachments can effectively get rid of eastern red-cedars.

The tree removal attachments available for your equipment will depend on the type of machine you have, so pay careful attention to attachment product descriptions.

Try using one of these attachments to remove eastern red-cedars:

  • Mulching attachments: Available for machines like tractors, excavators, and skid-steers, mulching attachments cut trees and process them into mulch. Common mulching head shapes for these attachments include discs and drums. Some mulching attachments can also cut red-cedars or grind their stumps. After mulching, consider chemically treating the remaining debris to prevent any seeds from sprouting.
  • Stump grinders: Depending on the attachments you have, you may need a separate stump grinder to process the stump after removing the rest of the red-cedar. By getting rid of the stump, you can prevent a red-cedar from re-sprouting.


Land Clearing Attachments from Diamond Mowers

 If you are looking to completely clear red cedar trees from your land, mulching attachments are the best choice for processing trees into a fine mulch. Diamond Mowers offers many great attachments for skid steers, tractors and excavators for mulching trees to help you get rid of red cedar trees. 

Learn more by contacting our attachment experts or finding a dealer near you.



Topics: Skid-Steers & Attachments, Invasive Trees/Plants, Tractors & Attachments, Excavators & Attachments, Application: Conservation Management

Cedar diseases and their treatment

  • Cedar diseases and their treatment



13 minutes to read

  1. .Possible diseases, pests and lesions of cedar
  2. . How to increase the immunity of cedar

Content: 1. Possible diseases, pests and lesions of cedar 2. How to increase the immunity of cedar When growing conifers, you should be prepared for the fact that over time, trees and shrubs can get sick. There are symptoms that are specific to each disease, making the problem easier to identify and subsequently fix. This article describes the most common cedar diseases. By studying their signs and treatment rules, you can prevent the death of plants and quickly return them to a healthy appearance.

Possible diseases, pests and lesions of Siberian pine

Siberian cedar is rarely exposed to diseases, because it has strong immunity that protects the plant from infections. But the older the tree becomes, the higher the risk of cedar breaking under the influence of adverse external factors: fungus, insects, climate, etc. The stability of the tree is reduced.

Healthy cedar without damage is able to withstand frosts up to 28 degrees!

Spruce mite This parasite poses a great threat to the tree. It feeds on the juice of fresh and juicy needles. The negative influence of insects causes a deterioration in the condition of the needles - they begin to wrinkle, fade, turn pale, dry out without moisture.

Pest control consists in regular treatments with special solutions (for example, Fitoverm), which can be purchased in departments with garden tools or in plant nurseries. But folk methods should not be used, since this will only aggravate the situation - the tick will multiply more actively and destroy the plant. Spider mite The distribution of this parasite on a tree is easy to determine by the following signs: • dry needles; • cobweb on needles and separate areas; plants; • yellowness on the needles. Elimination of spider mites is carried out using solutions such as Fufanon. It is important to prepare the suspension clearly in accordance with the instructions. Aphid It is easy to notice this insect on a tree, since these are relatively large pests. They massively fill the surface of the bark, branches and needles, forming a kind of green "carpet". To free the cedar from parasites, it should be irrigated from time to time with the help of Karbofos. At the initial stages, it is necessary to carry out 3-4 treatments with an interval of 8-12 days. In the future, you can do this less often, for example, once a month. False shield small

The parasite causes abundant shedding of needles, while even small branches can fall off. If you do not take action in time and do not neutralize the insects, the plant may die. Therefore, it is worth immediately purchasing one of the insecticidal preparations, for example, Lepidocid, in order to treat the tree. You need to apply the product on the affected areas and on the base of the cedar. Pine Hermes Insect larvae densely cover the cedar surface and imitate a brown coating. If you look at the tree carefully, you can see tiny parasites not in a bunch, but individually. The larvae will not harm an adult plant, but young cedars will quickly destroy it. When eliminating Hermes, funds such as Fufanon or Sparks will help. Apply the solution to the needles. It is also advisable to water the tree with Aktara. Pine scoop Gardeners discover the scoop on cedars in the spring. Parasites, like all living things, appear with the advent of heat and begin to intensively eat plants. Insects completely eat branches and needles, absorb nutrients from the kidneys. In regions with an arid climate, the scoop becomes the cause of the extinction of large-scale plantations. For pest control, a drug of the Lepidocide type is used. In this case, triple processing is required. Seryanka The main symptom of the disease is neoplasms on the branches and trunk of a tree. In the spring, a gray-yellow substance appears from them. If the disease is not treated, then the spores in this mass will quickly spread over the entire surface of the cedar, which will cause the plant to weaken and its subsequent death. Seryanka is not cured. Therefore, it is important to prevent infection of healthy specimens. A sick cedar should be removed. Moth This butterfly does not pose a danger to conifers, but its larvae have a detrimental effect. May is the beginning of eating wood and needles. Caterpillars feed on everything: bark, needles, branches, shoots. Insecticides will help get rid of moths. It is not enough to carry out one treatment, it is necessary to irrigate 3-4 times. Rust diseases They appear as a white coating on branches and needles. Infection is first detected in the kidneys. And if the disease is not treated, then the rust of the needles quickly spreads over the entire surface of the tree. The needles of the cedar begin to crumble, the plant dries up. As a treatment, it is recommended to use fungicidal agents. It is advisable to make stem injections - to inject a solution under the bark of a tree.

Cedar emits phytoncides - substances that purify the air of microbes.

Pine silkworm

Insects penetrate into young plants and into buds. A sign of the presence of a silkworm is the distorted ends of the branches. If you do not take measures to eliminate the problem, then the cedar will dry out. The fight against the parasite is to remove the infected branches of the cedar. After pruning, spray the plant with Fastak.

How to increase the immunity of cedar

Cedar diseases can be prevented with the help of regular treatments and proper care. Preventive irrigation should be carried out with insecticides once every 1-2 months, starting from April-May, since it is at this time that parasites are activated. It is also important to control watering, because excess moisture in the soil is detrimental to cedar. A weak tree is easily attacked by insects.

  1. .Possible diseases, pests and lesions of cedar
  2. . How to increase the immunity of cedar
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How to peel pine nuts at home


  • 1 How and how much to boil a pine cone to extract the nuts0004
  • 2 How to clean cedar nuts at home
    • 2.1 how to soften cedar nuts using boiling water
    • 2. 2 How to quickly clean cedar nuts
    • 2.3 How to clean the cedar nuts from a freezing method of
    • 2.4 How to clean the cedar nuts from the sabbaths of the matters using temperature difference
    • 2.5 How to crack pine nuts at home by hand
      • 2.5.1 Rolling pin
      • 2.5.2 Hammer
      • 2.5.3 Pliers, garlic press
    • 2.6 Machines for shelling pine nuts
  • 3 How to clean pine nuts on an industrial scale
  • 4 Processing nuts after shelling
  • 5 Conclusion 901 Peeling nuts at home is quite difficult. Small dense seeds of the northern tree with a strong shell are almost impossible to break. There is no equipment for cleaning pine nuts at home. Residents of the northern regions know the secrets of cleaning hard northern fruits. You can take advantage of their years of experience.

    How and how much to cook a cedar cone to extract nuts

    To clean northern nuts, cedar shoots are harvested in late autumn. They should turn dark gray or brown and become covered with hard woody scales. This means that the nuts are ripe and ready to eat. It is possible to get nuts from a cone only if it is pre-boiled for half an hour, but not more than 40 minutes.

    It is better to cook cedar shoots in the open air and in an old pot. When cooked, they release a large amount of resin and a strong aroma. Tar deposits from the walls of the pan are almost impossible to wash off.

    Important! The coniferous pungent smell of cedar cones indoors is difficult to remove.

    Use a suitably sized pot for cooking. Collected cones are put on its bottom and filled with water. The liquid should completely cover the cedar fruits. From above it is necessary to impose a layer of grass or hay. This trick will help get rid of excess resin, the shoots will not float to the surface.

    Put the saucepan on the fire, bring the water to a boil. After the fire, it is necessary to reduce and cook the cones until a strong coniferous smell appears. This will take approximately half an hour. After the pan is removed from the fire, the shoots are laid out on a dry surface to cool. As soon as the cedar fruits have cooled, they begin to peel them.

    Important! It will not be difficult to clean boiled cedar shoots by hand.

    How to peel pine nuts at home

    The hard shell of the northern tree nuts is difficult to remove. There are several ways to crack pine nuts at home. To do this, use various improvised tools and ingenuity. To make the nut shell more pliable, it is softened with boiling water, cold, heat.

    How to soften pine nuts with boiling water

    Nuts are placed in a shallow bowl and poured with boiling water for 5-10 minutes. After the nuts are taken out and spread on a dry towel, allowed to drain. Then you can start peeling them.

    How to quickly peel pine nuts by roasting

    You can roast nuts in the oven. After the shell is easier to clean, and the taste of the finished product will be much better.

    Peel pine nuts at home in the following way:

    1. Rinse cedar seeds under running water, do not wipe afterwards.
    2. Preheat the oven to + 150 Сᵒ.
    3. Arrange the nuts on a baking sheet in a single layer and place in the oven. They should be placed on the topmost shelf in the oven.
    4. Pine fruits are simmered for about 15 minutes. The process should be controlled so as not to overcook them.

    As soon as the shell turns golden or light brown, the pine nuts can be taken out. They are poured onto a towel and allowed to cool for half an hour. After this time, the nuts can be peeled with a regular rolling pin. They are covered with a cloth and with effort they begin to roll the rolling pin over the fruits, while the shell easily splits.

    How to Freeze Shelled Pine Nuts

    First, place hard nuts in the freezer to soften for a couple of hours. They are first placed in a plastic bag. The air from the bag must be released. The cellophane is then tied tightly. After freezing, nuts are easy to clean by crushing with a rolling pin. The shell becomes brittle, easily separated from the core.

    Important! Thawed pine nuts are immediately eaten. Their shelf life is less than a week.

    How to shell pine nuts using a temperature difference

    For this method, first heat a frying pan on the stove. After that, fruits are poured into it without adding oil. Within 2-3 minutes, the seeds of the cedar cone are heated, stirring constantly. Do not fry the nuts for more than 5 minutes, they will lose their taste.

    After the specified time, the product is transferred to a container filled with ice water. Keep it there for no more than 1 minute. After the contents of the cones are transferred to a towel, allow excess moisture to be absorbed.

    Dried pine nuts can be placed in a plastic bag, let the air out of it and tie it tightly. After that, you can crush the shell with a rolling pin. Strong pressure on the fruit should not be, as the shell becomes fragile, you can damage the kernel.

    How to split pine nuts at home manually

    In addition to heat treatment, various handy tools that are in every household are used to clean hard nuts.

    These may include:

    • rolling pin;
    • pliers;
    • garlic press;
    • hammer.

    If you get used to it, you can learn to clean the seeds of the cone without spoiling the kernels.

    Rolling pin

    Rolling pin is easy to clean processed and fresh pine nuts at home. They are placed in a bag or on a towel, covering the top with a free edge. After they begin to roll out with a rolling pin. Soaked in boiling water or frozen cedar cone seeds are cleaned with a minimum of effort. It takes force to peel raw nuts.


    For this cleaning method, boiled or fresh seeds are taken. They are laid out on a waffle towel in half. The free end is covered with cedar fruits. After that, they begin to lightly hit with a hammer. The main thing is not to overdo it, so as not to get a show from the kernels and shell fragments.

    Pliers, garlic press

    If there are few nuts, they are cleaned with improvised tools: pliers or a garlic press. In this case, the cedar seeds are cleaned one at a time. For this method, you need to be patient, because this work is painstaking.

    Pine cone seeds should be preliminarily boiled over with boiling water, then dried. After each fruit is clamped between the parts of the pliers and the handles begin to squeeze until they crunch. Do this carefully and slowly, as it is easy to crush the nut completely.

    Load a few cone seeds into a garlic press and start squeezing the handles. You should not do this abruptly, using maximum effort: there is a high probability of getting nut porridge. The press may well act as a shelling machine for pine nuts.

    Pine nut shelling machines

    In modern conditions, large volumes of northern nuts are processed on special machines - pine nut shellers. With their help, you can clean up to 70 kg of raw materials per hour. Such machines can be seen at special processing factories, or you can make your own.

    Pine nut peeler performs a complete processing cycle of raw materials:

    • crushes the shell;
    • separates the cores;
    • removes the film from the nut;
    • screens out debris from the finished product.

    The Pine Nut Peeler can be used to clean seeds not only for home use, but also to set up a small Nordic wood processing business.

    How pine nuts are cleaned on an industrial scale

    Until recently, the entire process of cleaning the northern nut was done manually. Now powerful machines capable of processing several tons of raw materials per day can cope with this. All of these devices work differently.

    Here are some basic principles of operation of pine nut peelers:

    1. Mechanical method – the seeds are split in a special container using a pine nut press cleaner, after which they are poured into another container for further processing.
    2. Vacuum method - raw materials are subjected to pressure drops in a special container, after which the husk is easy to clean.
    3. Crushing and grading method - at the first stage, the raw materials are subjected to mechanical action of the pine nut sheller, after which they are poured into separate containers for complete cleaning.
    4. Exposure to liquid nitrogen - the seeds are heated and then dipped in liquid nitrogen, the shell crumbles easily without any extra effort.

    At the last stage of production under factory conditions, cedar fruits are sorted by size and packed in airtight containers to preserve their taste for a long time.

    The only negative is that the equipment often spoils the cores themselves, leaving their particles in the total mass of the finished product. Such crushed seeds are also sold, only at a lower cost than whole ones.

    Processing nuts after peeling

    In accordance with state food standards, pine nut kernels must be sorted.

    Packages of northern nuts of the highest grade contain chipped particles (no more than 10% of the total weight of the finished product). In the product of the first grade, the content of crushed kernels is allowed no more than 15%. Poor quality nut packages may contain up to 80% crushed kernels.

    Sorting and grading of cedar fruits takes place on special equipment. After cleaning, the resulting kernels are dried and roasted in dryers to remove excess moisture, prevent the growth of mold and pathogenic bacteria.

    Important! At the final stage, northern nut kernels are packed in vacuum packaging, which retains the taste of the product for a long time.


    You can peel pine nuts at home using various tools and tricks. After heat treatment and freezing, the product is easy to clean, but it can not be stored for more than a week. Being in the shell, the nuts retain their beneficial properties and taste for a long time. It is recommended to clean them immediately before use.

    Learn more