The Q&A Archives: Arborvitae - turning brown

Question: My arborvitae that I planted last fall are looking good and healthy, except that the bottom 1/4 of two of them are turning dark brown like they are dying. My dog does occassionaly

Answer: I think the problem deserves a little more investigation. Dog urine can burn the foliage so if the browing pattern is at the same level on both shrubs and is mostly on the outside foliage, I suspect that's what is causing it. If the browning is at different levels, or higher than you think your dog can reach, I would suspect a disease or even a sign of root rot from overly wet soils. I can't really diagnose the problem without seeing it so I'm afraid you'll have to put on your detective cap and check it out. Good luck with your plants!

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