I have a cypress tree that lost its leaves earlier than the other cypress trees in the neighborhood. It is located on the neutral strip. I took some pictures and asked at Home Depot. They said it might be because it is not getting enough water, or too much water. They said that if it loses its leaves from the top first, it is not enough water, that if it loses its leaves from the bottom first it is from too much water.
My tree appeared to lose its leaves from the bottom first, and it is creating 'knees' with the roots near the base of the trunk. Do you agree that it is too much water. Our yard is on a sprinkler system, and this tree had its own hose to the base. I attached a 5 foot soaker hose to this hose and buried it in the ground around the base. In the summertime I had that station (which included the grass in the neutral strip) set for 10 minutes a day.
How should I regulate the amount of water to this tree to get a more healthy tree?
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2003 8:38 am Posts: 784 Location: ,
The secret to good watering is to do so deeply and infrequently.
Once a week for 40 minutes is better than 7 times a week for 10 minutes.
Is this a brand new cypress tree? If you've only recently (last year or so) planted it, then it's still in the adjustment period for being in its new locale.
I would try watering more like twice in a week for 30 minutes, say Monday and Thursday or Friday. This will allow for normal moderate drying in beween, and will also train grass roots to dig deeper for water and hence make them more drought tolerant come next year.
_________________ Shepherd of the Trees
It is not our part to master all the tides of the world, but to do what is in us for the succor of those years wherein we are set, uprooting the evil in the fields we know so that those who live after may have clean earth to till.
Thank you for your reply. We have been in this home for 3 years and the cypress tree was planted new then. Once it gets going each Spring it appears to be healthy, but it does lose its leaves early.
I will make your suggested change when I begin watering again next Spring. However, it seems when I water longer times, the water overflows and just runs down the street. Should I try to poke some holes in the ground for the water to go deeper?
Also, I currently have a brick border about 18 inches from the trunk with bark mulch covering the base of the tree. I am thinking of removing the brick border and just covering the base with the same bermuda grass that is on the rest of the neutral strip. Is one of these options better for the tree?
Also I have been putting 4-5 tree fertilizing spikes in the ground each Spring. Is this good? Is Fall a better time? I have been using spikes I get at Lowe's. Is another brand better?
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