Cedars turning brown

nico6196(Z5a)April 28, 2010

We planted three cedars last spring and upon unwrapping them this spring, one of them has some brown patches and the other has yellow patches. Can someone tell me why cedars turn brown? Is there anything we can do about it?


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Hi Nico

Can you show photos?

Some cedars do go through a browning process -- what sort are yours?

Many evergreens if not watered well during it's first season in the ground will start showing stress only in the following year. Did you provide these plants consistent watering last year?

What can be done? -- just patience for now. Be vigilant. Cedars are pretty good at bouncing back. a Little fertilzer perhaps *but only after we rule out root troubles.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2010 at 12:07PM
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Here's some pics. The cedar on the left has a brown patch and the middle one is starting to yellow a bit (on the inside, it's brown and dry) - I hope you can see it in my pics.

The cedars are Thuja occidentalis 'Smaragd'. I did have a soaker hose around them last summer (the year I planted them). Although I made a point of watering them regularly, I cannot recall if I did it that regularly.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2010 at 10:17AM
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Sorry, the pics didnt' work. Here they are

    Bookmark   April 30, 2010 at 10:19AM
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Okay, the one with the closeup is going to be fine. Give it water and some of those tree fertilizers. My guess is, it probably had some root stress last season. It's recovered now. Lucky thing with cedars is that it will regenerate that foliage. (not so with Junipers)

The one in the middle looks dead unfortunately.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2010 at 12:03PM
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Thanks, I've read somewhere that the brown stuff can be cut out. What do you think? If so, when would we do this?

    Bookmark   May 1, 2010 at 1:46PM
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bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)

If you prune, I would prune what needs to be pruned asap - it is getting on for pruning a cedar (cedars should be pruned in early spring).

If/When you prune, you must be very careful not to prune too far back, or you will end up with a big bare spot - forever. You have to leave growing tips. It will take a couple of years to fill in what you have pruned.

You could consider not pruning the leftmost one at all (ianna is spot on - it should recover). It looks like new growth is already forming at the tips and in a year (or two at most) the brown patch will not be visible, and you will keep the shape of the tree. If you prune it, you will get new growth, but lose the shape.


    Bookmark   May 1, 2010 at 8:42PM
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