The Q&A Archives: Ivy Dying

Question: I have ivy in one section of my yard and it is turning brown. Also in that area, there is a tree that lowers almose lie lilacs but I am not sure if it is a lilac tree. The flowers used to be fragrant just like lilacs. Well, the ivy is turning brown and drying in spots and the tree did not bloom or bud for the last two years. Could it be that I have a soil, insect or disease problem?

Answer: Yes, if a number of different plants are being affected in one area, it is possibly due to a pest or disease problem but I think it is more likely something environmental such as a change in drainage making it suddenly extra wet or extra dry, accidental chemical exposure such as salt spray from a road or weed and feed from a rotary spreader, or something unusual like an underground gas leak. You may have to do some detective work to figure out the cause. Your local county extension and/or certified nurseryman should be able to help you trouble shoot. They will be able to help you diagnose pest and disease problems (they may need samples and/or some photos) and suggest how to proceed based on the diagnosis. Good luck with your mystery!

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