Dogwood tree half dead

Debbi Branka(6)June 3, 2013

We planted this tree 3 summers ago. It doesn't bloom very much, but is blooming some. The center (main) branch seems to be dead, but the branches around the bottom are bloomed (sparsely). I'm posting a picture from tonight. An ideas? I'm assuming we can't prune the dead in the center since that's the main trunk.

Sorry for typos or sideways picture. I'm posting from my phone.

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Well....let's assume we know this to be true....
So removal is up to you....if the main trunk is serving a purpose then it might be considered as stays.

From this then, I assume the branches are 'suckers'...growing from a foreign source. Suckers are not offshoots---they are inadequate to supply bloom and are just nothing to put up with.
So get out the heavy pruners and cut them out.
If this destroys the shrub, then so be it. Replace it with another.

About the blooming.....question: is the tree close to the lawn and do you fertilize it with a high nitrogen lawn fertilizer.
It could be that you have applied too much nitrogen around the tree and it likes grows leaves...and keeps growing them....but denies bloom.

Its blooming a little feed it with a zero nitrogen and a higher phosphurus and potash fertilizer. When you fertilize the lawn do that area by hand so that the tree doesn't get any.
Prune branches back that are dead or damaged.
Protect from winter wind and give it a healthy mulch around its base.....but keep the mulch about six inches away from the base.
This might help it next spring.
If I'm wrong about what you have now as being suckers, then this plant might resume its healthy growth.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2013 at 12:13PM
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gardens1(5b ON)

Just happened to stumble across this forum and your question. If the tree is dying from the top down, check how deeply it is planted. You should be able to see the root collar without disturbing the soil at the base of the tree. The root collar is where the tree trunk widens at the base, just above where the roots start to grow from the bottom of the trunk. You do not want to have the roots visible, but the root collar should be visible. If in doubt yet of what a root collar is, look at trees in your area that are growing wild. The base of the trunk widens where it meets the land. If a tree is planted too deeply, it WILL DIE (though there are exceptions, such as Manitoba maples (acer negundo) and other weed trees). Also, be aware that mulch should be a couple of inches deep, but leave a space between the mulch and the tree trunk. DO NOT make a mulch `volcano``, instead the way the mulch is placed around the tree should more resemble a donut, with a hole in the middle for your trunk. Hope this info is helpful.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2013 at 11:52PM
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