Need help with my trees

Discussion in 'Christmas Trees & Seasonal' started by BREZCREW, Apr 28, 2011.


    BREZCREW LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    I planted 40 trees 2 years ago for a privacy fence line. The first year they were green healthy and grew about a foot. This spring I have no idea what happened. Thay all turned brown, lost their needles and look like they are going to die. Upon closer inspection they due have buds at the end of the branches and the tops seem to be green and growing. I gave them some miracle grow and am hoping for a miracle. The buds on them are the only thing that have me staying positive. Anyone ever seen this or had it happen? Any ideas? Thanks

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  2. Mike Fronczak

    Mike Fronczak LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 301

    I have the same problems here, I am constatly fighting to get them to take, deciduios trees have done much better. Maybe some one will have a better answer, best idea I can tell you is try a different type of tree different species do better in different growing conditions.
  3. ken18621

    ken18621 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    What kind of trees are they?
    (douglas fir, blue spruce ect)

    How wet does the ground get around them?
    (Many varieties dont do well in wet soil, they can even live for several years and suddenly all die from wet ground)

    Who planted them and how deep were they planted?
    (if planted too deep the soil wont warm up enough and basically rot the roots)

    Did anyone use and herbicide within several hundred feet of them?
    (i have seen pictures of spray drift traveling over 1,000' and killing evergreens)

    Are there any established conifers in the area?
    (insects and/or diseases can travel from an established tree)

    If I had to venture a guess, I would say the ground is to wet. the trees in the picture are dead. post a reply and maybe I have a better answer for you.

    I know how you feel..........I have had my share of tree problems. The latest problem was last fall I had about 150 four foot frasier fir damaged by deer rubbing their antlers up and down the tree, those trees are as good as dead now.
  4. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,646

    I'd try superthrive before you give up. If anything can save them that is it. use it when you plant and every few years just to avoid winter kill and keep the disease and heat tolerance of the trees up.

    a better privacy screen might be a leland cypress, privot hedge, austrees or river bamboo. all of those are extremely hardy and fast growing, but check your climate zone- ( I think you are zone 3 or 4 ) to see if any of those will work for you.

    BREZCREW LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    Thanks for all the input. The trees are doug furs and they were delivered in small wood baskets. I had a post hole digger on a bobcat and dug the holes about a foot or so (enough to bury the basket). The ground is not wet at all if anything I would say they didn't get enough water last year. I had someone tell me the PH in the soil could be way off, also it was a very bad winter here last year with a lot of snow and very cold temps. I am just thrown off by all the buds on every tree, makes me want to believe they will make it some how. I'll try some food and hope for the best. Thanks
  6. treemonkey

    treemonkey LawnSite Member
    Messages: 178

    As ken has alluded, it is very difficult to diagnose tree problems without all the information.

    I recommend contacting your county extension agent, find out who is the Christmas Tree specialist at Cornell, and proceed from there. You might have to submit a sample to their plant diagnostic lab for verification.

    In Michigan, the Christmas tree growers are having great difficulty growing Douglas Fir in recent years. Whatever reason (weather patterns, whatever) a number of needlecast diseases have become rampant. Check out Douglas fir needlecast on the net, but again, we can only guess with the info you gave us.

    The douglas fir seed source is also important regarding vigor in your location. Again, the christmas tree extension specialist at Cornell should be able to help you out.

    Good luck.

    BREZCREW LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    Cornell is a good idea. That place is top notch for sure. I had some issues with a dog and they were right on top of it. I just hope they don't charge as much for trees as they do dogs.:) I have a cousin who is a senior there so I'll have to give her a call. Thanks

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