The Q&A Archives: lack of vigor in prunus calleryana

Question: I planted a prunus - cleveland select (1.5-2.0 caliper) in fall or 04
It produced tiny pear fruit a few weeks later. This spring 05 it blossomed but the leaves are practically non-existent. The leaves are sparce and what little are there, are tiny. Some have dark brown or black curling along the margins. I do not see any signs of insects or fungus. Please tell me what I should be doing and what if any fertilizer to use.

Answer: Unfortunately based on your description I am unable to tell you specifically what is happening to your pear tree. This type of symptom can be caused by a wide variety of reasons ranging from for example overwatering or a poorly drained site, overfertilizing, frost damage, poor rooting, or a disease or fungal infection. I would suggest you work with your county extension and/or professionally trained and certified nurseryman (since it is a new tree you might want to check back with your retailer) to determine what is causing the problem and then based on that, decide how best to proceed. I hope it is nothing too serious.

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