September 28, 2023

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How To Revive a Dying Japanese Maple Tree

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Dying Japanese maple tree leaves.ConradH, Flickr, licensed underneath CC BY-NC-SA 2.0. 

Japanese maples are famend for bringing dramatic autumn coloration to the backyard. Their compact dimension, sleek behavior and vivid pink, orange, purple and golden yellow foliage make these decorative timber a putting point of interest in any out of doors house.

Also referred to as Acer palmatum timber, Japanese maples are sluggish rising and ideal for brightening up smaller gardens and patio areas. Though they’re totally hardy to the generally fairly harsh climates like these within the UK and North America, Japanese maples are straightforward to develop and easy to look after. Some frequent issues, nevertheless, can have an effect on Japanese maple timber and are value protecting a watch out for.

Dying Japanese maple tree leaves.JWilliams, Unsplash.

In case your Japanese maple isn’t trying its finest, it may be an indication there’s something critically mistaken with the plant.

Purchase your Acer trees here.

There may be many causes your Acer tree could also be dying, however most of those are associated to poor rising circumstances. It could be that the soil across the tree is storing an excessive amount of water leading to root rot. Or maybe your tree is affected by the solar or wind, which may go away shrubs feeling and looking dehydrated.

Regardless of the trigger, it’s probably the problem may be reversed when caught and handled early sufficient.

Dying Japanese maple tree.Carl Beech, Unsplash.

The best approach to uncover whether or not your Japanese maple is clinging to life or has already died is to rigorously reduce away slightly bark. Take a peak and word the colour of the wooden beneath. Whether it is inexperienced, the tree remains to be alive, and there’s an excellent likelihood you’ll be able to nurse it again to well being. If the tree seems brown beneath the bark, that a part of the tree is useless. Nonetheless, it’s value trying underneath the bark at one other a part of the tree earlier than writing off the entire tree. You could discover elements of the tree are wholesome, and the useless elements may be pruned away.

Japanese maple timber are deciduous and enter a dormant part in winter, when they might look useless. Most maples will start to indicate indicators of younger leaves reappearing in early spring. In case your tree reveals no signal of its lovely foliage by late spring or early summer time, the tree has probably died.

Japanese maple tree leaves.James St. John, Flickr, licensed underneath CC BY-NC-SA 2.0. 

The best approach to forestall Japanese maples from dying is to be taught what signs it is best to look out for. If caught early sufficient, most may be remedied, and your tree may be returned to full well being.

Signs to Look Out For

Curling and Falling Leaves

This could be a signal that your tree is being scorched by the solar. If you happen to don’t wish to transfer your Acer palmatum to a shadier a part of the backyard, think about planting taller crops and timber round it to offer partial shade.

Brown curling leaves may also be a symptom of under-watering. Test the highest layer of soil and if it feels dry, give the tree an excellent soak. The very last thing you need is to encourage root rot, nevertheless. So make sure the soil drains nicely and doesn’t change into waterlogged. Cultivating the encircling soil with a backyard spade or fork will assist hold it draining freely.

Sagging Branches

In case your tree is unhealthy, its branches may start to sag and/or change into blotchy. This could be a symptom of poor diet or an insect infestation. Within the case of the previous, feed the tree with an excellent all-purpose fertilizer – a slow-release granular selection is ideal.

An insect infestation could be a bit trickier to take care of. Aphids are significantly drawn to Japanese maples and like to decide on younger shoots. The only approach to eliminate the bugs is to make use of a sprig bottle full of water and washing up liquid to kill the aphids and wash them away. Examine surrounding crops and different maples to make sure the infestation hasn’t unfold.

Japanese maple leaf.Nervewax, Unsplash.

This largely will depend on how rapidly you’ve taken motion to revive the tree and the steps you are taking to assist it recuperate. Often, Japanese maples may be nurtured again to good well being as soon as the problem has been decided and handled.

Like most crops, Japanese maple timber require basic upkeep to maintain them wholesome.

Japanese maple tree leaf detail.J Williams, Unsplash.


Maybe a very powerful of those is common watering. If you’re within the UK or one other space with plenty of precipitation, your tree will probably be watered by nature for a lot of the yr. However throughout scorching and dry spells, it pays to present the tree an excellent drenching two or 3 times a month. Goal to maintain the soil moist however nicely drained. In case your Acer is in a pot or container, verify there are many drainage holes and that extra water can drain freely.


Japanese maples profit from good high quality granular fertilizer. Mulch and apply fertilizer in spring to assist the tree throughout its development interval. Keep away from feeding in autumn, as this may encourage it to develop on the mistaken time of yr and adversely have an effect on its course.


Acers planted within the backyard will usually be hardy to winters with temperatures of 0 to 7°C (32° – 45°F), however making use of mulch in late autumn earlier than the primary frost will assist defend the roots from low temperatures. Timber planted in pots or containers will want some assist to outlive the winter. If they’ll’t be moved to a greenhouse or different sheltered place, one of the simplest ways to guard Japanese maple timber from frost is to insulate the pots. Use pot toes or small blocks of wooden to boost the container from the chilly floor and wrap it in insulation sheets or bubble wrap to forestall the worst of the chilly from reaching the basis base.

Selecting the Proper Spot

The placement of your Acer may have a big impression on its well being. Japanese maples dislike direct scorching solar, preferring a spot in dappled shade. Additionally they wish to be sheltered from sturdy winds and thrive finest in an acidic or impartial soil pH. A potted Acer tree may be moved round to seek out the perfect shady spot. However select your location rigorously when planting a Japanese Maple within the floor as they’re tougher to relocate.


Common pruning has a number of advantages, together with serving to air to flow into and serving to forestall fungus from showing. The perfect time to prune Japanese maples is in the course of the dormant season, from November to January. Don’t get carried away, however slightly pruning to take away any useless or broken elements of the tree and any crossing branches to permit the tree to develop in a beautiful form.

As with many issues, prevention is best than remedy for protecting Japanese maple timber glad and wholesome. In the proper circumstances, Japanese maple timber are straightforward to develop and require little upkeep. Guaranteeing they’re planted in well-draining soil, in a spot out of harsh daylight, and in chilly winds provides these lovely decorative timber the perfect likelihood at a protracted and wholesome life.

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