brown cryptomeria

Discussion in 'Gymnosperms (incl. Conifers)' started by judy, Jul 23, 2004.

  1. judy

    judy Member

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    New Jersey-USA
    Can anyone help me with a brand new, dying Cryptomeria japonica? About 1 month ago I purchased a 13 to 14 foot c.***. It appeared to being doing well for the first 10 days or so. However, the very top of the tree started turning brownish somewhere around the 9th or 10th day. Over the last 14 days, this brownish color has spread all the way down to the middle of the tree, on all sides. I have never owned a c.***. before. I believe I planted it correctly and in the correct place--Sun all day and near another evergreen. I believe evergreens cause soil to be acidic so I would think the c.***. would be happy! The nursery that sold the tree to me told me that my watering cycle (underground lawn sprinkler system which was activiated everyday for approximately 30 minutes every day) was not a sufficient amount of water. That the tree needs a good "soaking" about every other day. To top it off, we in New Jersey had a 2 week hot spell which occured during the planting of this tree.

    In response to his suggestions, I have soaked the roots for 15 minutes every other day for the last week. The change in watering doesn't seem to be helping.

    Have I killed this tree? I don't know what's worse, loosing the tree or loosing the money for the tree. It was very expensive. How do I get it back to the green color it should be? Everyday seems to be more brown than the day before! I would be grateful for any ideas that would explain the problem.
  2. jimmyq

    jimmyq Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Metro Vancouver, BC, Canada.
    When was the tree dug? how careful were they with the root mass (I find them to be very intolerant of abuse)? When you say soaking, exactly how much water do you mean (garden hose, full out for fifteen minutes? or?)? How big was the root mass(root ball)? was it in the shade and is it now in full sun? what is there warranty policy? :)

    try to take pictures of the progression for visible evidence if needed.

  3. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Hi Judy:

    There are two things you will be best served to do and that
    is include some images of your tree for us to evaluate and
    tell us which form of Cryptomeria japonica you bought
    from the nursery.

    Sometime go over to the nursery and see if any of their
    Cryptomerias are doing the same thing as your tree is.

    There are several forms of Cryptomeria. If I knew which
    one you have I can rule out or confirm Red Spider Mite
    damage for example. Also, there are several forms that are
    susceptible to a needle rust disease. There are some forms
    that can be severely weakened by a Red Mite. Leaf spot is
    almost non-existent here but it can be problem where you
    are. Oyster scale and Cottony Cushion scale are other
    insects that can problematic for many Cryptomerias.

    I hope you did not fertilize your tree soon after you planted
    it. A weekly, deep watering is healthy but several short
    timed waterings a week is not what several forms of
    Cryptomerias will like much for established trees. For
    newly planted trees we have to water them well and often
    when the temperatures are warm.

    I would give your tree a good shower of water every two
    days from "head to toe" when the temps are warm in my
    anticipating that you have either a Red Spider Mite or a
    Red Mite problem, more so than your tree having a rust

    < I don't know what's worse, loosing the tree or loosing
    the money for the tree. How do I get it back to the green
    color it should be? Everyday seems to be more brown than
    the day before! >

    Considering the size of your tree yes, you probably do have
    a considerable investment in it. The tree is more important
    than the money you may have lost. If you are lucky the tree
    will recover but it has been my experience, that with several
    forms of Cryptomeria that when they start to decline they do
    not come out if. Dealing with a rust issue is one thing as that
    can kill some needles and leaves a brownish coloration on the
    growth tips that does disfigure the tree but the tree can still
    live. New growth to arise from the deadened areas just does
    not happen on the dwarf forms that I have grown in the past
    and present. Even the larger forms such as the true Japanese
    form of the Sugi, 'Yoshino', just do not recover to being allover
    green in again very often at all. Once the Cryptomeria turns
    brown either allover of from the top down, as a general rule,
    the plant will perish. It is possible for the tree to make a
    remarkable comeback as I've seen it happen only in very
    rare situations, generally only on some of the dwarfs such
    as 'Tansu' and 'Tansu aurea' but I would not be hopeful of
    even a remote recovery.

    The last paragraph of this post was written almost a week apart
    from the other former sections. Since we have not heard back
    from you I am already sensing that the tree is either too far gone
    for much help or it has since perished.


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