Newly Planted Tree Leaves Turning Brown, Yellow or Wilting? Try…

Newly Planted Tree Leaves Turning Brown, Yellow or Wilting? Try…

Gently placed in its planting spot, sealed with soil and quenched with water–you can’t wait for your new tree to flourish!

But, after weeks of watching your tree soak in its brand-new life, you see... brown, yellow or wilted leaves?

When new trees have drooping or discolored leaves, there’s a problem. So, what can you do to help?

 


Why You’re Having Problems with Newly Planted Trees and What to Do

Adjusting to a new home is stressful for young trees. The sudden change in environment can lead to all sorts of problems, which is called transplant shock.

Transplant shock usually starts at the tree’s roots. Sometimes roots don’t have enough room to spread out or didn’t get enough water right after being planted. Whatever the case, trees wear their heart on their sleeve–or should we say their leaves. That’s why you see those wilted, yellow or brown leaves.

Is my newly planted tree dying?

You can often revive a shocked tree, but you’ll first need to make sure it’s alive and well.

  • Try bending a tree branch. If the tree’s dead, it will easily snap. Live tree twigs are nimble, so they’re flexible, bendable and much harder to break.
  • Or scratch a spot on the twig with your fingertip or a pocket knife. If the layer immediately under the bark is moist and bright green, the tree’s alive.

What to Do About Newly Planted Tree Leaves Wilting, Turning Yellow or Browning

Trees often suffer from transplant shock because their roots don’t have enough room to establish themselves.

Shocked trees also need a little TLC to get them back on track. Here are a few things you can try:

If those steps don’t appear to help your tree, consider replanting the tree in a larger hole. First, read this guide about transplanting trees. If you’re unsure if your tree needs moved, ask an arborist. Replanting your tree again could shock it once more.

Learn more about how to set your new tree up for success here!

  • Michael MacPherson June 17, 2018 >You have been a great help, the tree still has a lot of green leaves on it, the leaves are turning yellow a little at a time, I at the same time planted a Plum tree and it also is getting yellow leaves. I will follow your advice and replant the trees with a little more room for the roots. Thank you for your help.
  • The Tree Doctor June 12, 2018 >Hi Lora, Newly planted trees sometimes take a bit longer to get started because of the loss of roots during the transplanting process. If the twigs are still green, you may have to give the tree a little more time. If the twigs begin to brown or fade to a lighter shade of green, there may be other issues that stem from how the tree was handled before or after planting. I suggest you document your tree with photos and show them to the nursery where you purchased the tree. Your tree may have a warranty period that will be honored by the selling party. Hopefully, this helps. Here if you any more questions, Lora.
  • The Tree Doctor June 11, 2018 >Hi Jim, Newly planted trees sometimes take a bit longer to get started because of the loss of roots during the transplanting process. If the twigs are still green, you may have to give the tree a little more time. If the twigs begin to brown or fade to a lighter shade of green, there may be other issues that stem from how the tree was handled before or after planting. I suggest you document your tree with photos and show them to the nursery where you purchased the tree. Your tree may have a warranty period that will be honored by the selling party. Hopefully, this helps. Best of luck to you Jim!
  • jim beene June 8, 2018 >newly plant bloodgood Japanese maple. Six foot high when purchased - looked very healthy when planted, however now the leaves are all wilted first and then drying up. Also, there is a yellow scale developing on the trunk and some of the branches. The trunk and all the limps seem to be alive and well. However the leaves are not falling off but soon will be. What is the best option for potentially salvaging this tree. I live in Owasso Oklahoma and the soil has a lot of clay. Jim Beene
  • Lora Brown June 8, 2018 >I purchased 2 Redbud trees last weekend & I planted them a couple days later. Their leaves are turning brown. I wanted to know if I was over watering or not watering enough. Thank you for the answer. I already love my trees. I don't want to lose them.
  • The Tree Doctor May 30, 2018 >Hi Bennie, Newly planted trees sometimes take a bit longer to get started because of the loss of roots during the transplanting process. If the twigs are still green, you may have to give the tree a little more time. If the twigs begin to brown or fade to a lighter shade of green, there may be other issues that stem from how the tree was handled before or after planting. I suggest you document your tree with photos and show them to the nursery where you purchased the tree. Your tree may have a warranty period that will be honored by the selling party. Best of luck! Here if you have any more questions, Bennie.
  • bennie lynch May 28, 2018 >I planted a October glory maple tree on May 3 I have taken real good care of it but now on may 31st I noticed the leaves are real small and the leaves are starting to wrinkle I have tested all parts of the tree for being green and it is,so what do you think is my problem.
  • The Tree Doctor May 24, 2018 >Hi Peter, If the stems are still green, there is still a chance that the tree can still leaf out from buds farther down the stem. This is more difficult for a recently planted tree to do because their reserves are not as great as an established tree. You may just have to allow more time. If the green color continues to fade or turns brown, then the tree may be lost. Regarding the dog waste, you are correct in that it is not the best for the tree, but usually is not an issue unless the quantities are great. Once again, recent transplants are more at risk compared to established trees. I recommend you contact a certified arborist in your area to come and take a look at the tree in person. I can forward your request to your local office if you’d like. You can also reach out to them directly at (914) 610-7725. You can also submit a form for a consultation request at their local webpage here: http://www.thecareoftrees.com/local-offices/mount-vernon-tree-service/. Best of luck! Here, if you have any more questions, Peter.
  • Peter DT May 24, 2018 >Hi Davey, We live in NYC and have a beautiful young Turkish hazelnut tree in front of our building, planted in May 2015. This year spring started very late over here. When the first buds and firs small leafs finally showed up at the end of April, we had a very cold day (close to freezing temperatures on April 30st). Shortly after all the leafs started to shrivel. Last week, 2 small leafs opened. Today I noticed that also those leafs are dead. Breaking a small branch shows that it is still green inside, although it looks very dry. I would like to send you some pics but the email address blog@davey.com mentioned in another reply doesn't seem to work. Do you have any idea if this tree might still recover? I always watered it and took great care of it and was so happy it to see it survived the first winter. What is the effect of dogs peeing and pooping around the tree? I know it's not good, but other trees in the street don't seem to be affected. Thanks for your ideas and advice, Peter.
  • Yazmine Sanchez October 10, 2017 >Thank you for all the hard work you have done
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