Is my tree dying?

chrissssJuly 9, 2012


This is only my third summer in this home. There is a fig tree, not sure of type. The first two summers it did OK if watered when leaves started to turn a bit yellow. But this year the leaves have all turned brown, shriveled and dried. Not sure if just didn't water enough (very hot and dry here) or I did some moving of dirt around yard and put about 6-8" dirt around part of the base and on top of some the tree's roots. I was very careful not to dig up or cut the roots just hauled some dirt from part of the yard and dumped it in low spots. Have I killed this, or can it be saved somehow? Leaves are dry and brown but some small figs still look OK.



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where do you live? how big is this fig tree?

when you say you put some dirt around the base, do you mean covering up part of the trunk of the tree? it could potentially cause crown rot, but since you said its been hot and dry, probably not the problem at the moment, but could cause problems later on during the wet season or when you start watering. so i would remove the dirt off the trunk.

figs are fairly drought tolerant once established, but if its too hot and dry, that may be a problem.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 4:34PM
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I live in S. California, inland from San Diego; it is 85 - 100 degrees+ around now and will be so for several months. The tree is about 8-10 feet high. The base of the trunk is about 6" in diameter.

Whoever planted it didn't remove the 5 gallon plastic bucket it came in; the tree just broke through the bottom and there was no way for me to remove it. There was erosion on one side of the tree so about 1/3 the bucket and tree base was exposed and the rest was underground. I piled about 6-8" more dirt around the eroded area.

I think the problem is not watering enough earlier. Can the tree still be saved? Is it just a matter of keeping it watered now to nurse it back to health? I've not fertilized, should I? any help is welcome; I really want to save this thing; it seems like a real survivor.



    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 6:30PM
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Chris That tree was left intentionally in the 5 gallon bucket.
Some people did not decide yet where to plant and so they place the tree in the bucket,and grow it that way for a couple of years.
Then later they plant it.
In your case they moved and tree was never planted.
If I was you I will brake the plastic as much as I can to make possible for the plant to grow roots in the ground.
Also water well till plant come back.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 9:55PM
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i would not go overboard with the watering. give it a good, long watering once per week.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 11:43PM
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I have same thing happened to one of my apricot trees. I did not know why? I showed to a friend who supposedly knows one thing or two about trees. He asked me to remove all the branches and cut the trunk all the way except three feet above ground. I did. He thinks the root is shocked by some kind of bacteria but he said it will recover next season just keep watering it lightly.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 12:30AM
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