Help with browning spruce

Discussion in 'Gymnosperms (incl. Conifers)' started by Alan Thornquist, Jul 2, 2021.

  1. Alan Thornquist

    Alan Thornquist New Member

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    Kelowna, BC
    Just moved to Kelowna (from Winnipeg) in December and we have two lovely spruces in our front bed that all of a sudden are partially browning. They are watered by irrigation 3 times a week and have been fine up until this last bout of heat. Is this just heat damage? Are we not watering enough? From what I can see we are watering more than the irrigation was previously set up for and they seem to have survived the last 15 years...


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  2. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Very likely is the heat. Spruces don't like 40°+ heat at all.
     
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  3. Alan Thornquist

    Alan Thornquist New Member

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    Awesome - so are they likely to bounce back now that the 40°C plus temps are over?
    Is there anything we can do to protect them in the future?
     
  4. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Sadly, probably not - the brown leaves at least are dead, so as a minimum you're going to have bare twigs showing for a while.If you're lucky and the twigs and buds survive, you'll get new foliage on those twigs next spring. The real problem will be if the shoots and buds were also killed, in which case you'll have a lot of dead twigs on the outside of the plant, which will take several years for new growth to cover over.

    For future similar heatwaves - an increasingly likely risk unfortunately - spray with water through the heat of the day to cool the foliage off.
     
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  5. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Nest spruce that came with my current habitation was doing this last year, before the high temperatures. And has subsequently been removed. This week I noticed another example nearby, after the heat wave but with the browning in the process of starting in one small section - same as with mine. So the issue may be something like mite damage instead. With the flaring up of it in later years being due to higher winter temperatures rather than summer.
     
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