My evergreen is dying!

Well no not really. Much like leaves falling off of deciduous trees in autumn, evergreens will shed their inner needles as well. This is quite obvious in certain evergreens such as white pine and arborvitae. It creates an unsightly appearance for a few weeks.

Just as deciduous trees grow new leaves every year, most evergreens grow a new tuft of needles on each branch. Each year in the fall, it loses the oldest needles (those closest to the trunk) which is quite normal and called seasonal needle loss or fall needle drop.

This shedding of older needles is often unnoticeable but can become a dramatic display in some years. Stresses such as drought seem to make the needle loss more severe in certain years.  Remember to continue to water your evergreens late into the year and you can re-purpose those fallen needles and use them as a mulch.


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