Brown Italian Cyprus - Knowledgebase Question

Olympia, Wa
Question by jjeuler
April 3, 2010
The top and outer edges of all three Italian Cyprus, 8 years old--15' high, have turned brown this spring, never had problem before, not really cold winter, see no insects, they are drought resistant need to know what nutrient or systemic treatment to save them. Some green needles, plenty of water during winter. Thanks, James

Answer from NGA
April 3, 2010


It's difficult to say why the outer foliage has turned brown. It seems as though you've already eliminated the common causes - winter weather, water stress, insect activity. Too much water can turn the foliage yellow and fertilizer burn can turn it brown but neither sounds like it might be the cause. The good news is that you can shear your cypresses with a hedge trimmer to remove the brown foliage and to encourage healthy new growth. That's what I'd do now. New growth will appear in a few weeks. Cypresses usually don't need to be fed but if you want to give yours a little boost, use an 8-8-8 or an "evergreen tree and shrub" fertilizer in amounts as recommended on the package. Best wishes with your Italian cypresses.

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