The Q&A Archives: oriental japanese maple

Question: we have a japanese maple right out of our front door. the tree was starting to produce leaves like all the other in the neighbor and was hit by hard frost about 3 days. now they look dead. will it produce new leaves again or did this kill the maple tree? i have not broken off any limbs to see if still alive. anything i can do? also the birch trees were hit. you have been very helpful in the past, and i hope my little japanese maple is not gone. thank you for your help.

Answer: Lots of gardens were hit by late frosts this year, so you're not alone. The best thing you can do now is to do nothing. Your trees will recover within a few weeks and, since they lost their leaves so early in the season, they will most likely produce new ones. Don't do any pruning at this time. Just wait and watch. Your trees will know when to start growing again. After they have leafed out you can prune out any obviously dead stems and branches. Pruning will encourage new growth and by mid-summer both your birch and your Japanese maple trees should look just fine.

Best wishes with your landscape!

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