weeping white spruce

rhonda.kMay 15, 2014

Is there something wrong with my weeping white spruce, or is something eating on it? I'm new to conifers, so any information on this tree would be extremely helpful. Thanks, Rhonda

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gardener365(5b Illinois USA)

I've been systematically (for 3-4 years) blasting mine off with water and occasionally spraying it with an insecticide for mites.

That's what you have going on there I think...

This was a brutal winter and if that's all you're seeing is those couple little branches w/o needles, then forget about it, literally.

My specimen has branches throughout it that I keep clipping off... it is getting much better.

Mites show up after the weather warms up. (spider mites)

Dax

    Bookmark   May 16, 2014 at 7:35AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

is that the sum total of the damage??

if so.. ignore it ... as the new growth looks rather fat and happy ...

whats the history???? if rather new.. i would suggest damage from shipping and handling ...

i really dont understand the pic... did that part bud out.. and then the needles disappeared.. or not???

if it did bud out .... look for a worm in the general area.. basically the color of what it eats ... if you find it.. kill it ... and unless the damage is all over the plant.. that would be the whole process ...

you dont really want to have to spray a blue plant.. as you will stain the waxy coating that makes it blue...

if you take one of the older needles.. and rub off the wax.. you will find the green needle under the wax .. and that is why.. as the needles age.. they get greener.. and greener .. in the interior.. and eventually fall off ...

more info please...

ken

    Bookmark   May 16, 2014 at 7:37AM
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gardener365(5b Illinois USA)

You don't want to spray oils on blue-colored spruces. (dormant oil, horticultural oil, neem...)

When I spray insecticides, it's usually SEVIN or Malathion. Read any label before you ever use pesticides.

Dax

    Bookmark   May 16, 2014 at 7:55AM
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wassercom(5a)

I've had similar dieback on my weeping white spruce (WWS) , usually about a month after it pushes new growth. I've attributed it to some sort of early summer fungal attack, but Dax's post is making me reconsider that assessment. I think I'll give my WWS some systemic protection this year.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2014 at 10:20AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

interesting .... i dont recall any problem with Picea glauca ... of any kind.. setting aside mites on 'conica' ... aka dwarf alberta spruce ...

regardless .. OP [original poster]... needs to answer the questions i posed ... before they just start willy nilly.. spraying things around ...

ken

    Bookmark   May 16, 2014 at 12:05PM
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wannabeGardnr(7 Maryland)

What kind of systemic do you use on spruces? It is just preventative? Or you wait until you think you have a problem?

I'm getting nervous about my new plantings. All this talk makes me wonder if I should be applying some preventative too.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2014 at 12:14PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

wanna is willing to poison the world on a preventative basis... for no reason ...

really dude.. dont get wound up on all the horror stories ... that is part of the reason for GW... but dont think the earth is rampant with bugs you must prevent ...

of my 600 conifers ... i have treated about 4 of them for ESTABLISHED scale ... with a systemic ...

i spritzed a couple pines for abundant worms on last years needles ...

and blast the DAS with water... for spider mites ...

sum total.. in 14 years ...

please don't poison the world for no reason.. find a bug.. and slaughter it.. i have no problem with that ... trust me ...

ken

ps: i had the bayer left over from a folly of trying to save ash ... and it is labeled for scale ... and never has scale returned.. to a treated plant....

    Bookmark   May 16, 2014 at 4:42PM
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rhonda.k

This is a new planting, its been in the ground for only 3-4 weeks. Everything looked great up until yesterday and I noticed I was losing needles from the new buds and it only in just this area so far. I was hoping to get some answers about what to do so the rest of the tree doesn't start to look like this. Thanks

    Bookmark   May 16, 2014 at 7:44PM
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rhonda.k

Here is a picture of the whole tree, I appreciate all feedback as I'm very nervous about this tree. Thanks

    Bookmark   May 16, 2014 at 8:17PM
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wassercom(5a)

Wannabe: I don't use it (imadacloprid) on spruces but rather on plants that have had a history of being attacked by sucking insects...in my case, mostly pines. That being said, I lost about 1/4 of my WWS last year to something.

Rhonda: The interesting thing about your photo is my WWS is situated almost exactly the same way, on the SW corner of my house in a semi-protected location. The damage started in late May and by late June it looked like this:

Maybe they are doppelganger spruces?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2014 at 10:34PM
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rhonda.k

Lol, I had to google doppelganger. How does your tree look this year? I looked at mine for bugs and worms and don't see anything. I guess I will just wait and see what happens.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 8:42PM
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wassercom(5a)

So far so good, but it just started pushing new growth this week. It's also been abnormally cool. I'll start to get worried when things warm up...or maybe I should say "if" things ever warm up.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2014 at 9:51PM
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gardener365(5b Illinois USA)

spider mites.......wasser.

hold a piece of white paper under your foliage during the summer and bang on the foliage and look for them on the paper. You'll see them. You have the typical symptoms.

Rhonda, just watch yours. It's a new planting. You have nothing going on right now.

Here's a link for you wasser, below.

Dax

Here is a link that might be useful: Spruce Spider Mite

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 5:30AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

3 or 4 weeks ... in a long cold spring ...???

first . i presume new plants come rather bug free ... most of the time ...

second.. there just usually arent that many bugs .....this early in the season in the great white north ....

third .. most of the bugs we are talking about ... show their damage in the high heat of summer... by which time the population has exploded.. and they have sucked enough juice that the tissue fails in the high heat .. and if not then.. after cold winter winds suckh the rest of the moisture out of it ..

finally.. i have never.. in my life.. moved a plant of that size.. by myself.. and not did do some superficial damage to it ... in my better days. i would snap off the leader ...

just relax.. it gorgeous.. keep an eye on it.. and we will guide you if anything develops ..

the only thing you need insure.. for 2 years.. is DEEP.. proper watering ... thru the root mass planted... with NEAR drying in between.. how that all works in your soil.. in your yard.. is for you to figure out ...

you crack me up.. with the chair.. right next to your new babe... lol.. been there.. done that ...

i have had only one sip of coffee.. i hope i got all the other posts straight ... if not.. never mind ...

ken

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 8:03AM
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wassercom(5a)

Thank you, Dax. Your posts are always very helpful.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 9:06AM
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mikebotann(8a SE of Seattle)

My experience with spider mites is that they cover a general area rather than a small concentrated one. To me, rhonda.k's damage looks more like a worm was there.
Wassercom's damage could be a lot of things. I have no clue there.
Mike

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 9:30AM
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gardener365(5b Illinois USA)

Thank you for the compliment.

Dax

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 9:33AM
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beng(z6 western MD)

Too cold for spider-mites yet, IMO. They thrive in hot, dry conditions. Maybe those bare tips are the result from 'something' last year?

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 11:41AM
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wannabeGardnr(7 Maryland)

Ok, I will chill. Going on vacation. Will try to take some conifer pictures for you guys. Dax, that link is very helpful for me too.
I do notice on GW that some people seem to do a systemic on their trees, so was wondering if that's the norm for growing cool weather loving conifers in hot summer areas.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2014 at 11:20AM
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rhonda.k

Thanks everyone, feeling much better about this tree. I'm looking forward to learning a lot from the conifer forum as I'm planning to add more of them this year.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2014 at 8:05AM
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rhonda.k

Thanks everyone, feeling much better about this tree. I'm looking forward to learning a lot from the conifer forum as I'm planning to add more of them this year.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2014 at 5:42PM
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