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Our Vanderwolf’s Pine Was Planted September 2006, By The Nursery….

Tom and Ann Asked

Our Vanderwolf’s pine was planted September 2006, by the nursery. Since there are other trees on our front lawn, the nursery chose a location where it should receive sufficient sunlight. The tree has been well cared for, fertilized with evergreen fertilizer twice a year, and watered during dry spells. This year it appears to be under stress, with some new growth but brown tips particularly near the top. A number of branches have no new growth, unlike previous years. The tree comes with a five-year warranty. Do you have any suggestions?

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The Gardener’s Answer

Hi, Ann & Tom: It sounds like your Vanderwolf’s pine was planted properly and well cared for. I received the photos; thank you. Overall, it looks healthy but there is some definite die-back on the top branches. It could be a few different things; winter damage is a possibility if you had a dry fall and very cold winter. If this is the case then these needles will drop and the pine will put on new growth to replace them. Tip blight is also a possibility: you would see tiny fungal spores at the base of each individual needle. This is a more serious problem and should be positively identified. You really have to get up close to identify any insect or disease problems on any plant. We do not typically see many insect or disease problems with this pine but the only way to find out for sure is to have someone take a closer look. Since it is still under warranty you should have them come out and take a look. Hopefully they have a certified arborist on staff. If not, they should be able to recommend one in your area. For now make sure the pine is receiving sufficient moisture. They prefer moist, well-drained growing conditions.

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