The Q&A Archives: Saving a dogwood tree

Question: I bought a dogwood tree about a month ago. It is planted where sun probably hits it throughout the day. I have tried to water it every day yet I noticed over the last several days that many of the leaves are drying up like they would if it were fall time. What, if anything, can I do to keep the tree alive.

Answer: For the most part, dogwoods are understory trees and while they like morning sun, they can suffer in hot afternoon sunshine. Sometimes they will overcome this and other times they will exhibit crispy, dried up leaves. So the sunny position might be causing the problem you report. Of more importance is the amount of watering. Dogwoods like moist soil but they should be watered deeply once or twice a week, depending upon weather while they are busy establishing their root systems. Daily watering can keep the soil too moist and can suffocate the roots. Water deeply and slowly so the water can trickle down and wet the rootmass and then wait 3-4 days, dig down into the soil and see how moist it is. If it is still damp 2" below the soil surface you won't have to water for a few more days. If it is dry, it's time to water. Hope this information helps!

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