Tree bark damage

We assume a rodent of some sort has eaten all the bark off the bottom of our flowering olive tree just above the soil line to approx 6 inches above the ground. Can this tree be saved,and,if so,how?
Submitted by BHGPhotoContest

If the damage goes around the entire trunk, then there's really no way to save the tree except through complicated bridge grafting (occasionally done by professional arborists on high-value trees). I had the same thing happen to my newly planted crabapple this winter.

In the future, wrap thin-barked trees in late fall with tree wrap, tinfoil, burlap, or white plastic coil for the winter. There are also some repellents on the market, but you must reapply once a month.

Luke Miller, editor
Garden Ideas & Outdoor Living magazine

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