Jump to content
  • 0
Churchwarden

What's wrong with our conifer?

Question

This conifer is looking rather sick. In fact it seems to be dead on one side (the east side). Could it be the ivy infestation that's killing it? If that is the case, would removing the ivy help, or is it a lost cause? If it can't be saved, what's the risk of having a dead tree that close to the public highway?

DSCF8794.jpg.47f8faa073efdcf23c00f5f328809098.jpg

DSCF8795.jpg.ccbb866ddb540124adbae3aa5f689cbe.jpg

DSCF8796.jpg.57d5ea8479feafe8b81b8e407380f0d8.jpg

DSCF8797.jpg.a198d8fd7fdca2fd8a75b72fd6ce327a.jpg

 

Many thanks for this forum. I have found plenty of useful information here already. Any further help you can give on this particular tree would be much appreciated.

 

David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Recommended Posts

  • 0

Could be drought stress, seen a lot on conifers this year.

 

 

Sent using Arbtalk Mobile App

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Interesting that it is the side nearest the road which has suffered, perhaps it's something to do with that. Salt spray from last winter, perhaps? It would be useful to know how long the tree has been showing signs of stress, especially as the foliage round the side looks healthy and vigorous. The ivy is a secondary thing; it will only swamp a tree which is already weakened by something else.

Your diocese is bound to have someone who can advise on this, anyway.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

It's not looking great is it?

 

Ivy's not as bad a lot of people commonly think - it doesn't strangle plants as such, but it can get completely out of hand on some trees. Doesn't seem to be the case here - certainly just it's presence on the ground won't do any harm. You don't really need to see it's presence as an 'infestation' - it's pretty harmless and beneficial in terms of habitat.

 

It could be drought stress or it could be something to do with the bus stop! Do you get a lot of people letting their dogs pee there... or just one person very regularly?? Have the council dug up the pavement by the tree recently? If so there's possibly been some root damage which might explain the die-back on that side.

 

It could possibly be Phytophthora root death... can you see if any of the bark on the main stem is dead? Any sign of dead roots, particularly close to the main stem?

 

There's not much hope for it if this is the case. You can apparently get some effective fungicides to treat it but they're not over-the-counter and may not be suitable for use near to a public space. The tree might also be a bit far gone to recover even if they are used but it's hard to tell just from the picture.

 

Certainly a dead or dying tree presents some sort of an elevated risk risk next to a bus stop where members of the public linger. A conifer like this isn't quite the same as big broad leaf tree which, if diseased, might drop a big branch (for example) and do some serious damage to property or person, but if I were responsible for it I'd want it sorted. I'd get a grip of this sooner rather than later.

 

It wouldn't be the end of the world if you had to have it removed - these can get quite big in time and can outgrow their space and have to be removed for that reason alone, especially right up against the boundary as it is. It's not like it's a 500 year old Oak!

 

If it has to go, get it replaced with a nice fastigiate Yew, planted a wee bit further back from the road. They've got a really nice tidy ornamental look to them and I always think Yew looks spot on adjacent to a church!

 

Really you need to find someone reputable to come and have a proper look.

 

Where about are you?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
Interesting that it is the side nearest the road which has suffered, perhaps it's something to do with that. Salt spray from last winter, perhaps? It would be useful to know how long the tree has been showing signs of stress, especially as the foliage round the side looks healthy and vigorous. The ivy is a secondary thing; it will only swamp a tree which is already weakened by something else.

Your diocese is bound to have someone who can advise on this, anyway.

 

Good call , I would say long term over consecutive winters. Salt that is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

There looks to me like theres a lot of ivy around the top of the conifer- thats not doing the plant any good at all- It will contribute to browning of needles which will be unsightly.

Could it be that this ivy was at the low point(now needle less) until recently and someone pulled it out but left the main bit. That would account for this damage.

Ivy may not 'strangle' trees and I agree it's good for wildlife but growing through conifers is not recommended and it sure makes a broadleaf extend it's growth which then when removed leaves a odd shaped crown.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

I've looked even closer at the first photo- You would be wasting your time with this unless you want an unsightly conifer. Remedy- fell and replant- yew would be a good choice- buy from the nursery/ field grown and rootballed and plant in early spring- make sure someone who knows about plants is in charge of watering for 6 months.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
I've looked even closer at the first photo- You would be wasting your time with this unless you want an unsightly conifer. Remedy- fell and replant- yew would be a good choice- buy from the nursery/ field grown and rootballed and plant in early spring- make sure someone who knows about plants is in charge of watering for 6 months.

 

Thank you. That kind of confirms what I suspected. I'll have a word with the diocese about who we should contact next.

 

Can anyone on this site recommend someone? We're in Bishop's Stortford (Hertfordshire/Essex boarder). Is anyone able to give a range of costs we might be looking at for felling this? It would be good to know what we might be looking at before I report to the management committee next week.

 

Thank you for the suggestion of a yew. That sounds perfect for this location - if the local yoofs can leave alone long enough to get established.

 

Many thanks

David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
There looks to me like theres a lot of ivy around the top of the conifer- thats not doing the plant any good at all- It will contribute to browning of needles which will be unsightly.

Could it be that this ivy was at the low point(now needle less) until recently and someone pulled it out but left the main bit. That would account for this damage.

Ivy may not 'strangle' trees and I agree it's good for wildlife but growing through conifers is not recommended and it sure makes a broadleaf extend it's growth which then when removed leaves a odd shaped crown.

 

Ah... I see what you mean about the Ivy now. Didn't spot all that growth at the top!!! That is quite bad!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

I'd say salt spray is likely too, as the damage is all roadside. One other consideration is the bus stop, how long do buses wait there? Is there any chance the exhaust fumes could be belching out into the tree on a regular basis?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Answer this question...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Featured Adverts

  • Tip site reviews

About

Arbtalk.co.uk is a hub for the arboriculture industry in the UK.  
If you're just starting out and you need business, equipment, tech or training support you're in the right place.  If you've done it, made it, got a van load of oily t-shirts and have decided to give something back by sharing your knowledge or wisdom,  then you're welcome too.
If you would like to contribute to making this industry more effective and safe then welcome.
Just like a living tree, it'll always be a work in progress.
Please have a look around, sign up, share and contribute the best you have.

See you inside.

The Arbtalk Team

Follow us

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.