Carolyn
Carolyn
  • Hometalker
  • South Hutchinson, KS
Asked on May 29, 2013

Is this Japanese Maple worth saving?

CarolynNancy HandMaryAnn B
+13

Answered

We purchased a Japanese Maple (Not sure of variety) last summer after plants were reduced in price because of the late planting time. It was about 6-7 feet tall and seemed to have lost some leaves, but the price was right, so we thought we would try to salvage it. This spring most of the branches are dead with a few leaves on only one branch plus there is new growth coming out lower on the trunk. White circles where leaves are. Is it worth trying to salvage this tree? If so, what do I do?
is this japanese maple worth saving, gardening
16 answers
  • DannieBuilds
    on May 29, 2013

    Help answer this question... It's definitely worth saving. No matter what you spent for it. The new growth indicates that the roots are working. However, I would replant it elsewhere. Planted too close to the side of the house two things can happen; it can affect the foundation drains and the growth of the tree. Be sure to follow the roots and get them all. Add some good composted soil, water and enjoy.

  • Gail Salminen
    on May 29, 2013

    @Carolyn I am a rather stuborn gardener and would try to save it. If you do move it there may be more stress. I think I would clip off all dead branches, have the soil tested and treat the soil as indicated. I have brought one back to life, but also lost one after three years of trying :P To be fair the spring rabbits did have their way with the low branches and I think it was too much for the tree to deal with. But did save another one which is thriving well. So all that to say it depends on your urgency to have a thriving plant in that area, but you may want to have your soil tested to see if it will support your plant.

  • 360 Sod (Donna Dixson)
    on May 30, 2013

    You have nothing to lose, give it some more time. Remember plants WANT to live.

  • Janice Phillips (JP)
    on May 30, 2013

    I certainly would try moving it! Do so carefully so as not to further shock it. It's trying to come back! Give it time, food and water....give the roots a good foundation with composted material. Good luck.

  • Patricia W
    on May 30, 2013

    What you want to do it move it when it is dormant. Don't do it now. Check the branch health by scratching off some bark with your fingernail. If its green, its good. I dont know of many Japanese maples that don't have some die off over the winter, just prune back to the healthy growth. We grew so many different types of Japanese Maples.It looks like most of the growth is above the graft ( the part of the trunk where the Japanese maple is attached to a different type of tree) I would trim off any new growth that is below that for now, let the energy go to the top of the tree. But Do not move it yet, let it try to get healthy again, then move it in the late fall, and Feed it! a tree spike will give it food. Just pound one in it at the edge of the roots. That's what I know as a nursery owner:} Good luck!

  • Lawn Pro
    on May 30, 2013

    Don't transplant till fall.remove from the foundation area,to close to house.remove any dead branches.spray for japanese beetles when they are out and about.They love this species.

  • Leah Belverd
    on May 30, 2013

    it's a japanese maple-when it's healthy and thriving, its beauty will be well worth the effort you put into it to save it!! i LOVE japanese maples!

  • Bonnie Lewenza
    on May 30, 2013

    I would definitely save it, if it has indication that it is still alive. I would go and trim very careful any of the damaged branches that did not winter over well. Doing this will force the leaves to come out. And try feeding it some miracle grow for trees and shrubs. Give it a good water first and then feed.

  • Japanese maples are late to come out of dormancy in the spring, meaning they are one of the very last plants to get their leaves. You might need to just wait a bit more, as we have a had a colder spring this year.

  • Patty A
    on May 30, 2013

    My two are up against the foundation and they seem to appreciate the warmth and protection in my zone 5 garden. I've found they are very forgiving. I trimmed back one heavily and it rewarded me with new growth...I think this just has to acclimate. Trim off the dead branches and top a little off the top and next year I'm sure you'll have more healthy leaves.

  • Karen Tanner-Dickerson
    on May 30, 2013

    I had a beatiful Japanese Maple and it died from a combination gray mold and a gas leak. It was around five foot tall and had a nice shape. I made my husband dig it out and I put it in a large planter, put lights on it and goes where ever I need it.

  • MaryAnn B
    on May 30, 2013

    My two cents. I had the same issue with a young magnolia 5 yeas ago. After some thought I placed some Jobes Tree Spikes around the base of the tree. I cut back the obvious dead tree limbs and trunk and prayed to the tree fairy. In a few months I saw improvement. Each year it improved and it is a lovely tree now and I can hardly notice where the entire top part of the tree died.

  • Nancy Hand
    on May 30, 2013

    Yes go for it!! I don't think I would move it tho! Give it some time and cut off the dead branches. Some TLC will bring it back to life! :)

  • Carolyn
    on May 30, 2013

    Thanks Garden Helpers! I will do as you all suggest: trim it back, fertilize it, and pray for the best. It is planted in a bed of composted soil on the east side of the house where it gets morning sun only. The conditions should be to its liking. I'm sure it was stressed when we bought it. It really isn't as close to the house as the picture would suggest-about 4-5 feet. I would like to leave it there, it that isn't too close?

  • Nancy Hand
    on May 30, 2013

    Carolyn, my son and his wife live in Hutch with their twin boys. I love Hutch, cute town!! Be coming that way in July! :)

  • Carolyn
    on May 30, 2013

    Nancy, small world isn't it? I also have twin granddaughters! (not the one in the picture, though)

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