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Hi, I planted a Shammel Ash tree (15 gal) about a week and a half ago and it doesn't look that great. The leaves look kind of crispy (it's worse near the bottom branches, but appears to have some browning on the leaves all the way up) and I was able to "crunch" a leaf in my hand.
I'm worried it's not going to make it. Should I be watering more? Is it just transplant shock still or do I need to have a professional inspect? I'm attaching a picture of what the leaves look like..
Thanks as always for your help!
Did you plant the tree yourself? Where did you get it from? This looks like transplant shock.
Not much. Generally supportive care. I've used antitranspirants and superthrive with some success.
You may want to consider exchanging the tree for another at Summerwinds, as covered by their 30 day return policy/plant guarantee. Either it was improperly planted (too deep) or the rootball was somehow damaged on planting. Less common causes would be insect or rodent damage at the roots.
As Vynnie wrote, the recent increase in temperature and the plant's full sun location isn't helping the stress either.
How are you watering it and how deeply is the water soaking in? Do you have a soil probe to check moisture depth? See this publication for detailed watering advice: http://www.wateruseitwisely.com/region/arizona/100-ways-to-conserve... Also did you check on your soil drainage/percolation before planting?
Most of the steps you would take to minimize transplant shock would have been at the time of planting. However after the fact, I would:
1. check to be sure your "root flare" is at soil level.
2. Mulch, mulch, mulch - here in the desert I would mulch to 4" (you could put some newspaper down first to help suppress grass).
3. Water deeply according to your trees needs (see the above Watering by the Numbers Guide) and if you don't have an irrigation system to water for you, create a berm around the dripline and use your hose to fill it for deep watering.
Any other suggestions out there?
Yup. That looks like good ol' heat stress - transplant shock. Patience, young Jedi. It's an ash so it will rebound fine. Liz&Dan wrote a good plan. (water water water) It will drop much of those leaves at some point, but you should then see some new leaves bud shortly after.
Typically, young (all) trees come from a nursery tree farm where they are packed tight shoulder-to-shoulder, where they actually receive very little sun, from directly above. Once in a 'real' environment, they receive lots of sun exposure an heat without the nice microclimate of the nursery. (remember, we seen irregular high temperature fluctuation the past couple weeks.)
Your tree will be fine Joseph, just keep watering properly.
Thanks everyone. I will keep watering to 3 feet deep (I don't have a soil probe, so I've been using rebar). Hopefully we'll start to see a recovery in the next few weeks! :)
Rebar works fine.
I too believe it is transplant shock. One general treatment to help overcome transplant shock is to cut the tree to a shorter size so the above ground matches the below ground usually truncated roots. So truncated roots are not trying to support a nice lush above ground tree. In your case though trying for a big beautiful ash might not be a good idea as long as there is a good single central leader.
I would agree with patience and it should recover.