The Q&A Archives: Blue Spruce Problem

Question: My 30'+ blue spruce has this problem: The needles on the edge of the branch are turning brown and falling off and spreading, leaving my beautiful blue spruce bare branched. I've sprayed with malathion but it only seems to slow it down. What should I do ? I would hate to lose this beautiful tree. Are lady bugs the answer? Is it aphids or worse? Please help me. If lady bugs are the answer how do they stay on the tree? I'll do whatever it takes.

Answer: Spruce trees can be attacked by a number of serious pests and diseases. Unfortunately, it is impossible to give you a definite diagnosis and cure based on the information here. (In order to make a good suggestion as to what to do to help the tree, first we need to establish the exact cause of the problem.)

For such a lovely, large and established tree, you might wish to consult with a professional arborist or your County Extension agent (tel. 345-3283) for a positive identification of the problem and suggested control, if any. Since some of the possible problems are accelerated by hot weather, you might wish to call them as soon as possible. I would also suggest that, if a spray is recommended, you consider hiring a professional applicator with the proper equipment for such a large tree.

Good luck with your tree!

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