dying pine tree

beams53(10940)May 9, 2006

I have a 40 foot pinetree in my yard that is losing its branches from the bottom up. about a third of the tree looks dead. Whats wrong with it & can it be saved?

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botanybob(Northern Idaho)

Pine trees normally lose their branches from the bottom. They will do this as the tree grows more mature and increasingly so where there is more shade from other trees.

Before looking for a problem, I would want to make sure that this isn't normal growth. Are there any other symptoms that would indicate the tree is in trouble? Is the color normal? Are they retaining 3 or more years of needles on the healthy branches? Is the top putting on good new growth every year?

If these indicators are normal, then I wouldn't worry.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2006 at 4:02PM
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the top looks good, but the tree looks ugly with the dead branches going up the tree. I have the same tree in my back yard, but all the branches are healthy looking

    Bookmark   May 9, 2006 at 9:47PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

NO one here can guess what might be going on with your tree. If it is a great concern to you, I highly recommend that you contact an ISA certified arborist (VERY important that the arborist has some credentials) for an evaluation. Your local extension office may have an ISA certified arborist that can assist you, and that would be a good first call to make. Some states are more proactive when it comes to the increasingly valuable urban forest, while other offices will respond with, "HUH?"

    Bookmark   May 10, 2006 at 9:37AM
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I Have a twin pine tree in my front yard an it too is losing its needles. Each year it seems that its growth to replace the needles decreases. My questions are as follows:
Could the weed killer I use to control Dandelions affect the tree?
Also are twin trees weaker that normal trees?
Thank you for your time

    Bookmark   March 13, 2007 at 6:01PM
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Also what should the soil ph be?

    Bookmark   March 13, 2007 at 6:06PM
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Most usually if a pine tree starts to loose needles on the bottom of the tree it is because those needles are no longer getting enough sunlight for them to manufacture nutrients to feed the tree so the tree cuts off the support system for those needles. In all trees if a part is not contributing to the support of the tree that part will not be supported by the rest of the tree.
Of course another cause could be boring insects, but most often boring insects start at the top of the tree. Your pine may have adelgides, maybe sawfies (but you would see the needles being eaten), or spider mites. If you had bagworms or spruce gall you would see them also.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2007 at 12:40PM
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belight_11(z4 CO USA)

I'm not sure about what might be wrong with your tree specifically. But, I had alot of gall on my two twin pines. I first cleared the undergrowth of needles and pinecones then trimmed just high enough so light and air could get under the lower portion of the trees. I then started feeding it evergreen feed in the spring and fall and for the gall I used epsom salts diluted in water three times(spring, middle summer, and fall) the first year. The next year the gall was greatly reduced and the next year after that It was all gone. I'm not sure where you live but watering it in drought conditions. (even using old dishwater) will help too.

good luck

    Bookmark   March 20, 2007 at 10:46AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Tom....the active ingredients in post-emergent herbicides are less likely to cause damage to trees than pre-emergent (such as weed and feed products). What is the active ingredient in the herbicide you use?

    Bookmark   March 20, 2007 at 11:42AM
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I am not sure what ingredients are in the weed and feed I used. I do know it was made by Scotts. I will look it up and get back to you.


    Bookmark   March 20, 2007 at 1:28PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Well, if you used a weed and feed (which is not the best thing to use for dandelions, by the way) chances are it is affecting your trees. Most of those pre-emergents are a real problem for tree roots.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2007 at 11:22PM
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What would you suggest I use for dandelions and crabgrass

    Bookmark   March 21, 2007 at 5:23PM
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The tree in the backyard looks OK. The tree in the front yard does not. Is there a difference in irrigation/fertilization of these two areas? It has been my experience that the slash pine (Pinus elliottii) declines in direct proportion to the amount of TLC it gets. I would be really appreciative if Beams53 would reply. Many thanks.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2007 at 7:53PM
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i was going to ask a couple questions, BUT i understand hijacking someone's thread is frowned upon .. right?

maybe i will just start a new post ...

    Bookmark   March 30, 2007 at 6:11PM
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I have a 15-year old chir pine that was affected by a cold snap about 2 months ago. The pine tree was very green then we had 3 consecutive days of 0 degF weather, unusual for the southwest region, and then the needles turned a brownish-green color. I have been watering the pine tree regularly (once a week) but have not seen new needles sprout yet. Is there something I can do to save this tree?

    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 11:38AM
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I have several white pines in my front yard and 2 of them are dying from the very top on the main trunk. What could be causing this and can I stop it?
Thank you

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 2:07PM
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