London Plane Tree yellow leaves

mike758August 11, 2014

I have a London plane tree that I planted early in the spring this year, and it's about 15 feet tall. When I first planted the tree, I dug a hole twice the size of the root ball, and mixed about 20% mushroom soil with the soil I pulled out. The soil is primarily clay. I never mulched the tree, but I keep the area of the base weeded as wide as the hole was. Watering, I water infrequently, about every five days, more if it rains, and I trickle the hose for a few hours.

Right now it's August 11, and here in Southeastern PA it's been hot, but not too hot, with highs in about the mid 80s, and while it's been raining, we haven't had any extreme amount of rain. I did my routine watering on Saturday, 5 days after it rained and the soil looked really dry. Today, I looked at the tree and it's almost completely yellow and leaves are falling off. It primarily seems to be smaller leaves and leaves closer to the tree. I attached a picture, but it's a bit hard to see because other trees are in the background. I don't understand the issue because the trees under the same conditions it's done so well in all season

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

I don't understand the issue because the trees under the same conditions it's done so well in all season

==>>> the issue you dont understand.. is that its august ... nights dont cool down for a recovery period... august conditions are not even close to those of spring and early summer ....

you have a huge transplant.. and its not enjoying its first summer .. BTW... potted.. or BBurlap ... ???

water properly.. especially in regard to your clay soil.. and otherwise ignore it...

its not hungry.. fert is not a remedy ...

is it really in that much shade????

all that said... the 65 year old sycamores on moms street.. do this year around.. for 50 odds years.. its a sycamore ...

i would speculate.. that a 15 foot transplant will take upwards of 3 years.. to get fully established.. for you to stop worrying about it.. in the mean time.. water properly ...

see link on proper watering.. dealing with clay.. and amending planting holes ...


ps: and if you are one of the lucky few.. who have had substantial rain this summer.. then you ought to find out.. if the soil is draining in your clay .... dig some small holes and find out ...

Here is a link that might be useful: link

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 4:06PM
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The trees root ball was in burlap, and the burlap and staples were removed. I planted the tree before it bloomed so I was spot on there. The tree does have shade, but isn't as heavily shaded as the picture shows, behind the tree is clear and plenty of sun shines through where the picture shows. An issue with the spring was the maple next to it was just buds, so it looked more open then it actually was. The maple is really nice so I didn't cut it down, but I did prune where my sycamore was

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 4:37PM
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As long as it was planted without circling roots (and even then it may not have problems for years) it is probably going to be fine. I would check for trunk damage by critters or bugs, but it is a tough tree. My LP is still green, but wild Sycamores by me are looking the same as yours. It should put out new roots over the dormant season and be fine.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 10:42PM
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