The Q&A Archives: Extreme Leaf Loss

Question: We bought a Monrovia tree this spring to plant in our garden; Acer palmatum 'Seiryu'. It was doing fine; lots of new leaves and bark. We have been faithfully watering all this time.

Two weeks ago the weather got hot 102?. Since then it has lost most of its leaves. So is it dying or going dormant? What do we do? We don't want to lose this tree now!

We bought it at San Lorenzo Garden center for $72.00
thanks, Patty

Answer: Heat stress can cause leaves to drop suddenly. Healthy trees and shrubs will recover, but this late in the season may not replace the fallen leaves until next spring. Continue to give your maple water on a regular basis until autumn rains take over for you. (one-inch per week, applied slowly so it trickles down and wets the entire root mass) By helping the root system establish itself this fall and winter, it should be all ready to produce new foliage next spring. Best wishes with your garden!

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