That is the tree's way of dealing with drought but it is also a sign that they are in the final stages before they cannot hold on any longer. I suggest you provide a mulch around the tree at least as far as the branchspread. Then water that same area with a good soaking. You can use a tuna can or other straightsided container and water until you have caught about an inch. The water is indeed not free but replacing the trees is more expensive. I am so sorry to hear about the drough you all in the southeast are experiencing. The bulbs are better able to survive but also need just an occasional drink to moisten the soil and keep them alive.
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