Japanese Maple Tree Has Large White Mushroom-Like Bulges On Trunk

Question From: Hartsdale, New York, United States
Q: about 25% up from base Japanese Maple tree is sprouting large white mushroom like buldges. I have scraped them out and sprayed with disinfectant but the buldges soon appear again. The wood under the mushroom is very soft and easily can be scraped out, which I'ver done. Thanks for your help. Janet Rose * Should a black tar like substance be used when dead wood is scraped out?

A: Do not use a disinfectant on the tree or the black tar. Professionals recommend letting nature take its course . The lump is probably a gaul that, though not pretty, should be left alone. Removing it could kill the tree. Best And Happy Yardening, Nancy