Dwarf Blue Spruce Needles Turned Pink Then White - Knowledgebase Question

Monroe Twp, NJ
Question by ejack99
March 25, 2000
I planted 3 dwarf globosa blue spruces and 1 blue atlas ceder in my yard about 8 months ago (AUgust). IN January, 2 of the globes and the Cedar turned a shade of pink, then white as the winter wore on. 1 has since turned totally white and the needles shake off, the other, only partially white while retaining it's blue color on most of the bottom and the cedar went totally pink. My question: Can too much water shock them to death. They were under a portion of my gutters that were clogged from October to December thus getting too much water for that portion of the year. I also put in fertilizer stakes in October. My green thumb seems to be better suited in my pocket than in the yard. Thoughts????

Answer from NGA
March 25, 2000


Unfortunately, I suspect they are in serious trouble. These plants need an evenly moist yet well drained soil meaning not soggy, and fertilizing evergreens is normally suggested only in spring. Finally, most evergreens are better planted in spring to reduce stress while they become established; a dry or windy winter can really hold them back and possibly kill them outright. To top it off, last year was so dry they may have been stressed before you brought them home, and then underwatering during that dry fall would have stressed them even more. Don't be too discouraged, though, many gardeners get their green thumbs through a lot of trial and error. In the meantime, you might consult with your county extension to see if these can be salvaged.

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