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Why are the leaves drying and going brown?

Posted by mssurrey Michigan (My Page) on
Tue, Jul 17, 07 at 16:44

I recently planted a sugar maple tree cultivar (2-3" dia) which was purchased from a nursery (about one month ago). For the last few weeks, the tree has been looking good. Now within a matter of three or four days, the majority of leaves have dried out (have become crispy) and gone brown (just as in fall but without the fall colors). The top leaves are still green but that's only at the very top.

As there is a lot of clay in our yard in some parts of our yard (although the soil seemed good around the tree when excavated), we planted the tree on 4 inches of pea gravel to ensure drainage in winter (as there is some standing water in some parts). Also the soil around the rootball was replaced with a topsoil and peat mix to balance the Ph.

It was then fertilised. Why are the leaves drying out and does this mean the tree is dying?
What can be done? I can email some digital pictures if needed.

Thankl you.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Why are the leaves drying and going brown?

I should add that the leaves are starting out a tan sort of color at the tips and then turning light brown.

The temps are in the 80's at this time and I was watering with a hose once a day for about 5 mins until recently when I turned the lawn sprinklers towards the tree for about 10 mins total during the day.

We also planted 2 red maples nearby (20 ft away) which seem to be OK at this time (although their leaves turned slightly reddish in the beginning but have remained the same since).

There is also mulch around the rootball but kept slightly away fom the trunk. Other than that, there is just grass around the tree although the part of the garden in which it is planted is near to wetlands on the back.

Is the problem because of too much or too little water, lack of nutrients, deisease etc?

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