Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
We bought a house that has quaking aspens around the perimeter of the yard. About half of them are dying or are already dead. What can we do to prevent the rest of them from dying, and what should we do with the dead trees?
Rate This FAQ
Aspen are highly subject to a variety of pests including the bronze birch borer, and to a variety of pathogens. They are also not very long-lived, and are thin barked, so are subject to physical damage from lawnmowers and weed trimmers. For these reasons they simply do not make the best yard or street trees. Depending on the situation and the homeowners preferences, I often encourage them to consider planting more appropriate species, and we have a few tools such as the Tree Browser CD to help them in making that decision.
That said, there are a few ways to successfully manage aspen in a suburban setting. They can be sprayed for the above mentioned pests, but need it yearly and still have the weaknesses mentioned, so I don't often encourage that. In some settings, if a specific portion of the yard is given over to growing aspen on a rotational sort of basis it can work. Aspen sprouts vegetatively, so when older trees dye, or just wherever there is full sunlight on the ground nearby, young trees will be coming up on their own. If left alone they will generally do well.
I have a few in a garden in my back yard and if I didn't mow the area near that garden they would take it over. So by having a garden area where they can successfully send up their 'suckers' they will constantly replace themselves over the years. As old ones dye-out they can be removed, taking care to protect the young ones coming up in the process.
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- The leaves of our sweet cherry tree have yellowed and our falling off at an alarming rate. This started two weeks ago and in another week ALL the leaves will have dropped except for a few on the tips of new growth (i.e. water spouts). This happened last year to two of our other sweet cherry trees. They did NOT come back this spring. Dead! The trees are 25 years old and pruned yearly. I've been fairly diligent about spraying (dormant oil, fruit fly, and borer) for the six years I've owned the house. At times they have shown signs of borer (or other insect) damage since there has been gumming spots on the trees. When I bought the house I removed the grass around the trees (not quite to the drip line,but a about four feet from the trunk. The trees get water from the lawn sprinklers, but I regularly (every 2-3 weeks) let a hose run water around the tree and soak in for a couple hours. When I fertilize the garden (commercial IFA garden chemical fertilizer)I toss a couple handfuls at the base of each tree. So some fertilizer about twice a year. The soil around the house is mixed. I would guess that most of it is moderate clay. We live on the edge of the bench not far from the mouth of Hobble Creek Canyon. If I had just walked into the yard, I would guess that the trees were getting too much water (yellowing leaves) instead of not enough water (dry crisping leaves). But I really don't water the trees that much and not at all in the last couple weeks when this yellow & leaf drop started. My only other clue is some leaves have brown spots. About the time we bought the house, a neighbor had a cherry tree drop most of its leaves and they were told (USU ext?) that it was a fungus; they sprayed and saved the tree. They've moved so I can't ask them specifics. I don't remember if the leaves had yellowed and then dropped. Too long ago. Help?
- My zucchini plant has white spots in the leaves of the plant. New leaves are green but mature with the white spots. There is no powder residue or other obvious sign of fungus. No other plant in the garden has this appearance. What is the problem?
- I have small white worms in my turnips and radishes. How do I deal with this problem?
- Something is eating my garden. HELP! At first I thought it was snails because there were quite a few holes in the leaves of my beans and squash. Now, there are just skeleton leaves left of half my garden. I have treated for snails with PAX and for other insects with Seven. I have looked for squash bugs but to no avail. I have seen a great many ants and earwigs. Oh, and my tomatoes seem fine. Any tips?
- It looks like something has bitten off whole leaves and blossoms from my tomato plants. They seem to be cut clean. What could be causing this and how can I fix it?
- I have a raised bed garden using the square foot gardening method and I'm not having much luck. It seems like I have to water daily. Is it possible that my garden can get too much sun?
- How do I keep lady bugs out of my house? Also, how do I keep out Asian Beetles?
- I live in Sanpete county. The winters are very cold and I frequently have winter kill of my roses, and perennials, especially on the South side of the house. Could you give me a basic "Yard & Home Winterization" list of things to do to prevent this and other winter issues?