The Q&A Archives: chinese fringe tree not budding

Question: my chinese fringe tree is a couple of yrs old. It has budded/flowered well in the past. I have yet to have any leaves this yr. I do see each branch tip is green. Should i be worried?
thank you

Answer: Based on your description I am not certain what may have happened to your tree. Chionanthus retusus is generally considered to be pest and disease free and it should be reliably winter hardy in your zone. (5B or the warmer part of zone 5 according to your zip code) But it should be showing signs of life by now. It is possible a late freeze damaged the buds and so the tree has to redevelop new foliage which could cause it to be late. I would suggest you consult with your local county extension and/or professionally trained and certified nurseryman and see if they are aware of any localized weather or other causes for it to be late in leafing out. In the meantime, as long as it is still alive about all you can do is make sure the soil is evenly moist like a wrung out sponge -- not sopping wet or saturated and not bone dry. I'm sorry I can't be more specific for you.

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