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Kousa Dogwood leaves turning red

Posted by knh68 7b (My Page) on
Sun, Jun 1, 14 at 14:26

I planted a kousa dogwood in May 13. Was glad it survived late frosts (after leaf buds had appeared) but now the leaves are prematurely turning red. It started at the bottom branches and the color change is gradually creeping toward the top branches. I have read online that this can be caused by a canker, but I cannot find a canker anywhere on the trunk. I'm in Arkansas, and we have had excessive amounts of rain in the past few weeks. The site of this tree is at the top of a small rise, so I don't think drainage may be the issue. However, it may be getting too much sun; a neighbor cut down a tree that was helping to shade mine. I may have to move it to a shadier location but don't want to stress it further.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Kousa Dogwood leaves turning red

one should always presume.. they get healthy plants from dealers ... thats kinda the whole point of plant inspectors etc ...

you planted it less than 2 weeks ago .. the ONLY thing it could be is.. transplant shock ..

could be sunburn associated with the shock .. you and your neighbor have been busy if he cut the tree down in the last two weeks ...

whats your base soil ... does it really drain all that rain??.. did you amend the hole with a lot of peat product???

whats the kite string for .. the neighbor on the other side??? .. lol..

that is a shipping stake.. not a proper tree stake ... pic of the whole if you want help with that ...

i wouldnt be overly concerned about some leaf coloration.. i would simply make sure it is PROPERLY watered for this and next year ...

i dont know if i would move it.. how many hours of sun does it get.. and at what hours of the day??


RE: Kousa Dogwood leaves turning red

I actually planted this tree a year ago, in May of 2013. The stake in the photo was actually temporary to keep the tree from tipping over when the top leaves get wet in the rain. Because the rain threatens to be unending (doubtful; I'm sure in July we'll be begging for it), I have given the tree a triangular staking. The soil PH is 8, according to my PH meter. Could that be the issue?

RE: Kousa Dogwood leaves turning red

I'm in the Northwest Corner of Arkansas. While you have had allot of rain, that has not been the case in the western part of the sate. I'm 5.5"+ YTD below average, with just barely half of average for April and May. Just an FYI.

Now that is out of the way, from your picture it looks like some new leaves are in fact developing. If these are in fact growing, then I would say you don't have much to worry about at this time. As for the red color, assuming there is no root problems (could the soil in fact be saturated as Ken suggested?) from too wet of soil, of a borer, then the increased sun of the other tree could easily be responsible. But you really need to check that soil before having any confidence in the red just being sun shade. But your description from bottom to top makes me think wet feet are more likely to blame.


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