there has always been a blemish on the willow trunk approx 18" from
the floor. with the recent high winds the willow now seems to be weak at that point.
is there anything i can do to repair the tree or the best way to support it
for future winds.
More info needed - how old, how big? Any chance of a picture.
As a general rule, however, the more you support the trunk of a tree, the weaker it gets. You do not have a choice if it is falling over and you want to keep it - but generally the best thing is to let the tree get on with it by itself. You can reduce windage and strain by removing some of its branches, particularly ones that make it lopsided.
If it was my tree I would:
a. Not be worried - that is just a surface scrape that will gradually fade over the years,
b: Remove the bamboo supports - they are hold the tree too far up - if you get a gale and the supports hold fast the biggest risk is thatthe head of the tree snaps off. Tree trunks bend inthe wind and act as shock absorbers. So If the willow has been in the ground for more than 6 months, throw the crutches away.