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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
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    3

    Unhappy Arborvitae Browning?

    I planted about 20, 4' tall arborvitae, almost a month ago. All but one were completely green with no sign of brownage. Within the last week or so, nearly all of them have been turning brown, mainly on the interior of the plants. I was told by the greenhouse to only water them once a week, which is what i've been sticking to (except when it rained) any ideas?
    i attached a few pictures to help.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    1,256

    Default Re: Arborvitae Browning?

    I would guess they dried out at some point. Once a week might be ok if you watered deeply, but the roots haven't had much chance to get established yet. They don't look terrible, so maybe it's just a little transplant shock. I hope you removed the burlap or at least pulled it away from the root ball.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Arborvitae Browning?

    There wasn't any burlap, they were in large pots. And none of the roots looked tangled up when i took them out. i usually water them for a fairly long time. both times when it rained, we got about 3 inches of rain.
    i'm in eastern PA, so it's starting to get a bit cooler now. i'm wondering if fertilizer would do more harm than good, since the plants are supposed to be slowing down for fall/winter.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    1,256

    Default Re: Arborvitae Browning?

    I would agree with you about fertilizing now. You might force new tender growth that might get damaged. I would fertilize with an organic like espoma's hollytone or plantone around thanksgiving & then in the spring. The organic won't activate until the weather warms, but will work down to the roots & get started early helping the roots.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    731

    Default Re: Arborvitae Browning?

    it looks like bagworm damage to me. the timing would be right for the movement time and new bags formation. the silk girdles the branches and causes them to brown and die back.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    3

    Smile Re: Arborvitae Browning?

    Well, I spoke to one of the guys at the greenhouse where I purchased the plants. He said a little browning is normal during this time of the year. Apparently, all evergreens "shed" old growth. how much they shed, depends on how much they've grown and what the expected winter is going to be like.
    Since I didn't see any bagworm on the branches, I'm pretty confident that they'll turn green again in the spring. However, I am going to try some of the organic fertilizer around thanksgiving.

    thanks

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    32

    Default Re: Arborvitae Browning?

    I suspect they have been planted too deeply. Check out http://www.treesaregood.com/treecare/tree_planting.aspx for correct planting methods.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    2

    Smile Re: Arborvitae Browning?

    Hello 'Arborvitae Browning' It is simply the older leaves on the shrub browning and falling off as would a Maple or deciduous tree. People think that evergreens don't loose their leaves, but they do. White pines can make a mess in the Fall. Your plants look healthy and keep watering them if its dry out...until the ground freezes. Arbs. love water. Fertilizing lightly in the Spring with Miracle Gro is fine.

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