What is happening to this Weeping Willow?

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by Mxrider52, Mar 16, 2011.

  1. Mxrider52

    Mxrider52 LawnSite Senior Member
    from TN
    Messages: 298

    We have this weeping willow tree in our yard and last year I noticed that it seemed half dead. Like the upper half was dead. Well this year it is coming out again but the upper half of the tree is dead. It has formed new branches off the lower section of the branches leaving the top dead. I started looking at it today and the bark is falling off and I noticed there are holes in the branches from some kind of bug I am assuming? A lot of the roots from the tree are above ground. Like the tree was not planted deep enough to begin with but this tree has been here for over 20 years I would say and last year was the first year it started looking dead. I know the neighbor on the other side does not like the tree and always cuts the hanging limbs off the tree since they hang down onto his yard and he cannot mow.Take a look at the pictures and tell me what you think.





  2. yardatwork

    yardatwork LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 651

    I'm pretty sure it's dying! Sorry...couldn't resist the obvious.
  3. Mxrider52

    Mxrider52 LawnSite Senior Member
    from TN
    Messages: 298

    Yea I understand that it looks like it is dying but it was like this last year and came out. There are new branches on the tree that are growing and the tree is already blooming out this year.

    Yea will probably end up just cutting it down anyways but just wanted some opinions if someone thought something was in it.
  4. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,746

    A willow will come back year after year from small limb bracts as long as their is a live-healthy growth ring with water flow. The willow is resilient to say the least.
    From a informal standpoint, the bark peeling off the tree seems like severe wind damage from either tornadic winds or some other type of harsh climatic impact. Just under the bark, the tree is trying to callus up and out grow the damage. The damage is so severe that the callus can't grow fast enough to stave off insect attack. Fungus and or hypoxilon canker disease is getting this thing for sure. The basal trunk area is another thing of concern that looks like black canker-willow blight as it is simply called. black cankers (caused by a fungus Phyalospora miyabeana). Either way, the tree will continue to survive until these cracks and lesions cease water and nutrient flow from declining roots and growth rings, and then all at once the tree will just die. Advise the customer to remove the tree.

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