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Avatar for tom_mn
May 12, 2020 3:26 PM CST

I have an Emperor 1 Japanese maple (in hardiness zone 4) which I planted 18 years ago and it has done well, fast growth, no issues till recently.

I noticed last fall that some of the leaves didn't fall off, unusual. Then this spring about 25% of the tree did not leaf out, so I cut out those branches. Then I noticed the dead bark in the crotches near the tree base, pulled off pealing bark and revealed these dead spots on the trunk that appear to be dry and healing over. This situation is in 3-4 crotch locations.

Any ideas what caused this, and will things improve on their own?


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May 12, 2020 10:33 PM CST
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Where are you located? More and more JMs in the west are being infected with Verticillium wilt.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

President: Orchid Society of Northern Nevada
Webmaster: osnnv.org
Avatar for tom_mn
May 13, 2020 6:55 AM CST

I'm in Minnesota.

Reading up on verticillium wilt, I am almost certain that that is what is striking a Korean maple in the backyard. It had large sections of dieback and half the tree rapidly dying. It would appear to recover then suddenly have large die back. A few years ago I cut it down to the ground, it resprouted to the side of the old trunk and is now about 6 feet tall and not yet showing disease.

Anyway, the Japanese maple is showing different symptoms, no yellow leaves noted in the growing season last year and this bark damage must have been going on for many years under peeling bar unnoticed by me.

I will look for the stained pith typical of verticillium wilt since I just cut down branches.
Avatar for tom_mn
May 13, 2020 7:08 AM CST

Reading more, I think it must be a canker of some sort. Every source is recommending to remove the tree. Sighing!
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May 13, 2020 3:39 PM CST
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Sighing!

I did notice something that looked gummy in one of your photos.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

President: Orchid Society of Northern Nevada
Webmaster: osnnv.org
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