monkey puzzle tree

Discussion in 'Araucariaceae' started by rcmafgny, Aug 13, 2006.

  1. rcmafgny

    rcmafgny Member

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    NY, USA
    i bought a 5 foot tree from a nursery 3 months ago.
    the tree has been doing great and we love it, but im a little concerned now.
    the lowest branches have turned brown and a lot of the tips have turned brown. is there something wrong?

    the tree gets a lot of water as its near a sprinkler head, but the soil drains off well

    any thoughts?
  2. markinwestmich

    markinwestmich Active Member

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    Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States
    3 months after transplanting is about the time when the transplantation shock resolves and the roots start to grow into the surrounding soil. Any number of things could cause your symptoms. (1) Loss of lower branches may simply be a natural process of maturation (2) Browning of the branch tips may be a symptom of a fungal infection which may be treated with a copper-based anti-fungal if caught early enough. (3) Although water may be draining efficiently in the immediate area around the top of the root ball, if there is a high clay content in the surrounding area, water may be sitting at the bottom of the root ball and acting like a bowl of water, possibly causing root damage. (4) Too much water, and especially with certain types of bark mulch near the trunk, may encourage fungal growth. (5) Your soil may be contaminated with certain types of fungi that a recently transplanted, stressed, tree may be susceptable to.

    Monkey puzzle trees, although known to be quite adaptable and resistant to diseases, do best in deep, fertile, volcanic soils that drain well, but also hold moisture. Like their conifer cousins, they will succumb to fungal infections, sometimes quite rapidly.

    It wouldn't be a bad idea to treat the tree with a copper-based anti-fungal and see what happens.
  3. Scion Swapper

    Scion Swapper Active Member

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    New Jersey, USA
    I completely concur with markinwestmich suggestions, but another point to consider is how shaded the tree is. Monkey puzzles, as they mature, will eventually shed their lower branches, but even very young trees will shed lower branches when placed in a shady location.


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