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yews turning yellow

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by bobbygedd, Oct 11, 2004.

  1. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    customer demanded that i plant them with the top of the root ball buried like 4 inches underground. i told her sure, whatever you say, no garentee. well, they are turning yellow. anyway to save them now? she insists that burying them too deep had nothing to do with it.
  2. D Felix

    D Felix LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,898

    Chances are that if they are turning yellow, they will soon be turning brown too...

    Is it in an isolated area of the plant (i.e.-the top, bottom, side), or is it all over? I'd bet it's all over, and once it hits that stage, it's terminal. 99% of the time that happens, it's 'cause they are/were too wet. Yews, quite simply, don't like wet feet!

    I can't belive the all-knowing and (sometimes) all-insulting bobbygedd didn't just tell her off and either plant them the right way or not do the job in the first place when she demanded that!:D


  3. jimmyq

    jimmyq LawnSite Member
    Posts: 39

    burying them too deep probably had lots to do with it. Yews have a fragile root system at best, especially when they are field grown. My suggestion would be to give them an application of an Iron and trace mineral food right now (like half the rec rate cuz its late season) then next spring when the weather perks, give them a good, time release NPK with trace and try to get some of that excess soil removed (now, not Spring).
  4. D Felix

    D Felix LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,898

    Paul- good to see another familiar face from AS over here. Welcome!

    In my experience though, if the yew is turning brown all over, there is very little that can be done to save it.

    One more question Bobby- how long have these yews been in the ground?

  5. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    they were planted this spring. all 4 of them, all turning brown, all over. funny u mention "wet feet". i don't argue with people who want to pay me top $$ to do something stupid. she insisted they be planted this way, i did as she asked. in burying them like this, it created a bit of a trench. she watered them constantly, and until the little trench had a continuous pool of water in it. i did advise otherwise, they don't want to listen, too bad, it's thier money.
  6. Coffeecraver

    Coffeecraver LawnSite Senior Member
    from VA.
    Posts: 793

    The Yew is getting no oxygen :dizzy:
    sitting in too much water most likely

    Planting Too Deeply

    Deep planting causes bark deterioration at the soil line, which will eventually kill the plant. Various symptoms point to excessively deep planting.

    Some new growth may develop each spring, only to die-off during the stress of summer. Advanced symptoms of depth-related stress are cankers and deep cracking of the bark.

    Perform a root collar excavation. Carefully remove the soil from the circumference of the trunk to the point where the trunk flares out into rot growth.If the tree or shrub was recently planted, it can be lifted and replanted.

    Planting shrubs with the top of the root ball slightly above the existing soil line is recommended.
  7. activelandscaping

    activelandscaping LawnSite Member
    Posts: 241

    There are really two possibilities:
    1) Pesticide injury, generally selective herbicide.
    2) Phytophthora root rot , it's almost certainly door number 2.

    I generally use the following procedure to determine if it's Phytophthora root rot:
    1) Quietly approach the shrub, so as not to startle it.
    2) Grab it by the base and give it a good pull.
    a.) If it makes a sucking sound and you smell rot, then proceed to the dumpster and heave it in.
    b.) If the shrub pulls free and there isn't a rot smell then examine the roots- black roots=dumpster; white roots= treat with Mancozeb ( or appropriate fungicide- see above link )
    c.) If your back pulls free, instead of the shrub, then it's pesticide injury.

    Do not fertilize the shrub. Chelated Iron will just give it a sickly green look, like a lemon trying real hard to change itself into a lime. :alien:

    Of the 3 fungicides labeled for this disease, all of which are incredibly expensive, Subdue Maxx actually works to control (more like indefinitely postpones ) Phytophthora root rot. Phyto. is systemic and can live in the plant tissue for 10+ years, as soon as you stop the applications it wipes out the host plant. BTW, if you plant any Euracious plants, in place of the yews, you will likely see the same results, unless you sterilize or remove the soil.
    The link above will provide " in depth info. ", be sure not to confuse " root rot Phyto. " with the other varieties mentioned.

    Best of luck with the shrubs, and the customer.
    Rtom45 likes this.

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