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Plant Diseases/curly willow tree

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Question
We have a curly willow tree about 10 years old and about 30 feet tall. It leafed out normally in early spring but about 2 weeks later the leaves of the bottom half died out. No sign of bugs. Some of the branches seem to be budding out again. Do I need to treat it with anything?

Answer
Dear Marlin, Please forgive the lateness of this reply.  Curly willow may be prone to several insects and diseases, but if the leaves were not diseased looking before they fell and you have checked for signs of borers or other bugs, then I think your problem is a simple one.  I think the tree ran out of water and started shedding leaves.  This is not uncommon.  Willows especially need a lot of water and they are fast growing trees so they will show stress early.  The good news is that it should leaf back out pretty much the same (you may find some dead twigs so you can break or prune those off) and be none the worse for wear.  I would just make sure that if you don't receive enough water from rainfall, then once a week water the tree deeply.  I hope this information helps, and once again I apologize for the lateness of my reply.  Melissa

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Melissa Johnston

Expertise

Plant diseases, landscaping, tropical plants, roses, herbs, plant care, grafting, horticulture, plant identification, anything about plants I can likely answer.

Experience

35 years experience in various plant businesses, 1984 Certified Texas Master Gardener.

Organizations
Master Gardener Association of Texas charter member

Publications
none as of yet, but I have a plant q&a book I am in process of submitting.

Education/Credentials
Magna cum laude graduate of Texas A&M, 1978

Awards and Honors
Plant growing awards, highest grade for Texas Master Gardener graduates.

Past/Present Clients
Past member of Allexperts.com and was very highly rated. Owned landscape company in the past, Almost Paradise, and was very successful despite little equipment, no help, and no advertising. Lived well for two years until 9/11.

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