The Q&A Archives: Smoke Tree Problem

Question: I have a 5 year old Smoke Tree. Last year some branches started to die off. I pruned the dead wood. This spring, the tree looked like it was doing very well. In fact the best it ever looked. Bright purple leaves and plumes starting to show. All of a sudden, all leaves have now wilted and it looks like I'm loosing it. I have no idea what has happened. Do you have a clue. I thought I finally had it taken care of, but actually over night this has happened. Thanks

Answer: Smoke trees are known for having some dieback in the branches as you described, so pruning it out would be the thing to do. The wilting you described -- especially overnight -- sounds like frost damage. If this is possibly the case, the tree should be able to leaf out again for the summer.

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