Q. What's wrong with my Yellowwood? Cladrastis lutea

Hi. I'm concerned that something's wrong with my beloved yellowwood, which I planted on my front sidewalk in November 2011 as part of a PhillyTreePeople planting here in Fishtown. The leaves are all brown now, despite me watering it regularly and giving it a lot of love. This seems early for the leaves to turn, and they're not going gradually yellow as they have in past years, just right to brown. I'm definitely worried. Are there any resources you'd recommend for me to investigate whether anything can or should be done to help this poor guy out front? He's been doing so well, and my almost 3-year-old son helps me water it; it's "his" tree and we'll all be devastated if it dies prematurely

Answer

Your yellowwood should not have brown leaves. The past winter was hard on a lot of plants with a wetter than usual spring followed by a extended dry period. If it was weak this year the leaves might turn yellow earlier than usual but not brown. In dry conditions trees should be watered deeply and slowly to prevent runoff followed by several days until repeating the process to prevent drowning the roots which require oxygen as well as moisture. Sometimes trees are watered briefly and too often creating weak, shallow roots. Try pruning a few small branches off to see if there is any green beneath the bark. If the branches snap and appear brown and dry inside you will need to replace the tree. 

  • Last Updated Jan 08, 2019
  • Views 56
  • Answered By Aska Gardener

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