Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Dying Maple (maybe) Tree

Q. I have this maple tree (I think) has been deciduous since October 2015 and one small branch has a few leaves in the spring. But now it seems to be dying. Can you give me some input what to do? Totally cut down or wait and see? I appreciate your input, thanks!

A. The tree (I think you have a Liquidambar not a maple), appears to be quite dead. The fact it has not leafed out by now is a major consideration in this. You need to take it out as soon as possible as dead trees are 100% likely to fail in the next several years. It is important that you chip the tree completely to pieces that are one inch or less and solarize the chippings for at least 6 weeks (in winter at least three months: see solarizing guide on second page of pamphlet here ) so that if the tree was infested with Polyphagous shot hole borer (PSHB) it does not infest other trees. Many maples and the Liqudambar tree are hosts for PSHB. 

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