ArboristSite.com Sponsors
 
 


What could cause literally half of a tree to die?

Discussion in 'Arborist 101' started by Plasmech, May 19, 2011.

  1. Plasmech

    Plasmech Addicted to ArboristSite

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,164
    Likes Received:
    79
    Location:
    Aston, PA (19014)
    What could cause literally half of a tree to die? By "half" I don't mean "50% of it is dead wood", I mean that if you were to divide the tree into two equal parts left-to-right with a line towards the sky, one half is dead.

    Could this be caused by poor soil on one half of the tree?
     
  2. Tree Pig

    Tree Pig A.K.A. Stihl-O-Matic

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2009
    Messages:
    3,230
    Likes Received:
    323
    Location:
    Ct
    girdled roots?

    by the way welcome back Plas
     
  3. tree MDS

    tree MDS Daddy

    Joined:
    May 8, 2007
    Messages:
    8,146
    Likes Received:
    1,349
    Location:
    CT
    Verticillium wilt might be a possibility.. not that I really know much about it. What kind of tree?
     
  4. RacerX

    RacerX Addicted to ArboristSite

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2009
    Messages:
    1,732
    Likes Received:
    278
    Location:
    Northeastern, NJ
    Is it possible that it got struck by lightning? Just wondering why something like soil conditions would suddenly change.
     
  5. TreEmergencyB

    TreEmergencyB AboristSite Guru

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2009
    Messages:
    731
    Likes Received:
    52
    Location:
    Greater Pittsburgh Area
    i bet the other half will die too!
     
  6. jefflovstrom

    jefflovstrom Not working at Mc Donalds.

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    Messages:
    7,826
    Likes Received:
    954
    Location:
    san diego, calif.
    Could be a root issue. Repairs on driveways, side walks, irrigation.
    Jeff
     
  7. DDM

    DDM Addicted to ArboristSite

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2002
    Messages:
    6,825
    Likes Received:
    300
    Location:
    Greenville,SC
    Lightning gets my vote.
     
  8. beastmaster

    beastmaster Addicted to ArboristSite

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,841
    Likes Received:
    398
    Location:
    Riverside, Caif.
    What kind of tree is it? Fusarium can sometimes kill one side of its host first, followed later by the other side. beastmaster
     
  9. treesandsurf

    treesandsurf ArboristSite Operative

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    Messages:
    121
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Wahiawa, HI
    I agree my first guess would be recent damage to root system. Could be on the same side as the dieback or opposite depending on the species.

    jp:D
     
  10. Don't-B-Stumped

    Don't-B-Stumped ArboristSite Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2010
    Messages:
    53
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Florida
    I'm voting for lightning. Just saw a huge oak tree that is still partially alive that was struck by lightning. Most of it is dead now. Really ashame as its a beautiful old oak and one of the larger ones around here. You can see the evidence where the lightning came out the trunk near the ground
     
  11. jefflovstrom

    jefflovstrom Not working at Mc Donalds.

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    Messages:
    7,826
    Likes Received:
    954
    Location:
    san diego, calif.
    I think it is a root issue. The OP would have mentioned or noticed a lighting strike.
    Jeff :msp_smile:
     
  12. Frax

    Frax ArboristSite Lurker

    Joined:
    May 22, 2008
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Alberta, Canada
    Saw this last year on a private job for a friend. Crab apple, and one half dead, other half looked fine.
    I think normally one would be looking for root problems as already suggested, but there were no changes to account for it. The gas line to the house ran through the zone and I have always wondered about gas line leak. I don't know how common small gas line leaks might be but I know natural gas leaks will damage trees.
     
  13. rxgreen

    rxgreen ArboristSite Lurker

    Joined:
    May 28, 2011
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    michigan
    Crab apple?

    Was there spotting on the leaves that were still on the alive side of the crab apple? If so and if the leaves were falling earlier in the season then they should it is apple scab disease which I have saw an increase with this same occurrence in Michigan.
     
  14. Frax

    Frax ArboristSite Lurker

    Joined:
    May 22, 2008
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Alberta, Canada
    Hmm? It was awhile ago and I think the
    healthy side looked perfect, but I didn't examine to too closely. I can ask HO if that half of tree still looks OK.
     

Share This Page