life span of dogwood trees - Knowledgebase Question

greenville, No
Question by elfuzzypawz
October 23, 2010
When we moved into our house about 18 years ago, there were two dogwood trees planted near a cement patio. One tree died about 5 years after we moved in. The other tree did well until about 4 years ago. It appears to be dying off slowly, one branch at a time. The remaining branches still produce flowers, leaves and berries. Is this the natural end to it's life, or is something else going on?


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Answer from NGA
October 23, 2010

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Dogwoods can slowly decline if the growing conditions are not quite right and they develop disease problems. Symptoms of fungal attack include reddish to maroon spots on the leaves, yellow to brownish discoloration of leaves and light gray lesions on the twigs often followed by progressive die back of twigs starting in the lower part of the trees.

Dogwood borer insects can also cause decline. You'll want to carefully inspect the bark and twigs of your tree, looking for holes. Borers are difficult to control because they are under the bark but they cause damage when they tunnel into the wood of the tree. So, if you find the signs, there's not much you can do to control the insects, but at least you'll know why your dogwood looks so puny.

I hope this information helps you determine just what might be going on with your dogwood so you can take preventative measures.

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