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9 Fast Growing Shrubs for Marietta Georgia

Looking for the perfect fast-growing shrubs to plant on your property? Knowing which shrubs will thrive in your Marietta yard will help you plant and have a beautiful landscape.

fast growing shrub marietta ga yard gathered the following species, growing, and care information to help you determine which shrubs are ideal for your yard.

1. Forsythia (Forsythia x intermedia)

This deciduous shrub blooms bright yellow flowers in the spring. It grows to 6 to 10 feet with a similar spread and has a growth rate of about 2 to 3 feet annually. It is hardy in zones 5 through 8 and prefers a 6.0 to 7.5 soil pH. It requires moderate watering and prefers full sun to partial shade.

2. Glossy Abelia (Abelia x grandiflora)

This evergreen shrub features glossy green foliage that turns bronze in the fall. It grows 4 to 6 feet with a similar spread and has a growth rate of about 2 feet per year. It is hardy in zones 6 through 9 and prefers a 6.0 to 7.5 soil pH. It requires moderate watering and prefers full sun to partial shade.

3. Beautyberry (Callicarpa americana)

This deciduous shrub shows off bright purple berries in the fall, attracting birds. It grows 6 to 8 feet with a similar spread and has a growth rate of about 2 feet annually. It is hardy in zones 7 through 10 and prefers a 5.5 to 6.5 soil pH. It requires moderate watering and prefers full sun to partial shade.

4. Fastest Growing Privacy Shrub – Leyland Cypress (x Cupressocyparis leylandii)

leyland cypress shrub

This evergreen conifer is a stunning hybrid of two cypress species and has become a popular choice for privacy screens and hedges due to its fast growth and dense foliage. It can grow 3 to 4 feet annually and reach a mature height of 50 to 70 feet with a spread of 10 to 20 feet. It is hardy in zones 6 through 10 and can tolerate various soil pH levels, from acidic to alkaline. It requires regular watering and prefers full sun.

5. Winter Jasmine (Jasminum nudiflorum)

This deciduous shrub blooms bright yellow flowers in the winter. It grows 6 to 10 feet with a similar spread and has a growth rate of about 2 to 3 feet per year. It is hardy in zones 6 through 10 and prefers a 6.0 to 7.5 soil pH. It requires moderate watering and prefers full sun to partial shade.

6. Purple Leaf Sand Cherry (Prunus x cistena)

This deciduous shrub features purple foliage and pink blooms in the spring. It grows 6 to 10 feet with a similar spread and has a growth rate of about 2 to 3 feet annually. It is hardy in zones 2 through 8 and prefers a 6.0 to 7.5 soil pH. It requires moderate watering and prefers full sun.

7. Bottlebrush Buckeye (Aesculus parviflora)

This deciduous shrub features white blooms in the summer, attracting butterflies. It grows 8 to 12 feet with a similar spread and has a growth rate of 2 to 3 feet annually. It is hardy in zones 4 through 8 and prefers a 5.5 to 6.5 soil pH. It requires moderate watering and prefers full sun to partial shade.

8. Dwarf Burning Bush (Euonymus alatus ‘Compactus’)

dwarf burning bush shrub

This fast-growing deciduous shrub features bright green foliage turning brilliant red in the fall. It grows 6 to 8 feet with a similar spread and has a growth rate of 2 feet per year. It is hardy in zones 4 through 9 and prefers a 6.0 to 7.5 soil pH. It requires moderate watering and prefers full sun to partial shade.

9. Fastest Growing Flowering Shrub – Crape Myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica)

This deciduous shrub or small tree is well-known for its crepe-papery flowers blooming in the summer months in pink, white, lavender, and red shades. It can grow 3 to 5 feet per year and reach a mature height of 15 to 30 feet with a spread of 6 to 25 feet. It is hardy in zones 7 through 9 and prefers slightly acidic soil with a 5.5 to 6.5 pH. It requires regular watering and prefers full sun.

Crape Myrtles are popular for their rapid growth and stunning blooms, making them a perfect choice for homeowners wanting a splash of color in their landscape without waiting too long. Crape Myrtles prefer well-drained soil and should be planted in locations with good air circulation to prevent fungal disease growth.

Fast Growing Shrubs

In this article, you discovered fast-growing shrubs, their growth habits, hardiness zone, soil, water, and sun requirements.

Understanding which shrub species will grow best in your Marietta, Georgia, yard will help you plant and develop a stunning, well-kept landscape that could significantly increase your home’s curb appeal.

Without hardy shrubs, your soil will more easily erode, look unappealing, and leaving your trees and home more susceptible to wind and storm damage.


Todd’s Marietta Tree Services

Marietta, GA
(678) 505-0266

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Which Trees are Best to Plant in the Summer

Spring is here in full swing in the MidSouth and summer is peeking around the corner. This is the time of year when more and more people venture outside to start thinking about gardens, flowers, and trees. When it comes to trees especially, you can often benefit from waiting a little longer and planting them in the summer!

Summer is a great season for planting trees as we’ll explain more below, but we always recommend speaking to an expert at Red’s before you commit to a new tree in your yard. Depending on the kind of tree and the size and features of your yard, some trees are probably better than others. We will walk through all the biggest reasons below, so keep reading, and don’t hesitate to get in touch with us if you have any questions! 

Why is Summer a Great Planting Season?

Heat Helps the Roots Grow

Did you know that warm temperatures are the ideal environment for root growth? We have plenty of that in the hot Memphis summer, don’t we? That’s why we like encouraging our clients  to plant during warmer months so that their roots will have plenty of months to grow strong while it’s warm.

There is Less Chance of Transplant Shock

Transplant shock is when the roots of a tree are damaged during the transplant process, sometimes due to stark changes in the temperatures of the ground. Planting in the warm months can reduce the chances of transplant shock and make it easier for your new tree to thrive. 

Get Blooms Sooner

If you have a flowering tree, then there’s no need to wait around for beautiful blooms. By planting in summer rather than the fall, you can expect a thriving tree to bloom faster, often by the very next summer! 

Lusher Foliage

Hot weather is the time when trees have their thickest foliage and grow more quickly. If you plant in the summer you have a greater chance of encouraging thick leaf growth early on. 

Some Trees We Recommend Planting in the Mid-South

Red Maple

Red Maples aren’t only found in Canada or up north where maple syrup is made. Red maples are native across the United States, including zones 7 & 8 where Memphis is located. They thrive in our warm temperatures and will reward you for planting with the signature 5-pointed leaf and bright red color in the fall. They can grow into quite large trees with plenty of shade, and are one of the easiest trees to care for, which is a huge bonus! Overall, we love recommending red maples to our clients who almost always are super satisfied when adding this tree to their yard and landscaping.

Tulip Poplar

The Tulip Poplar isn’t only native to Tennessee–it’s actually our state tree! That’s how you know it will be a great fit into your yard. Tulip poplars are excellent shade trees and are often chosen for aesthetic reasons as they grow into tall and majestic mature trees. They love moist, rich soil, and are known as a honey plant because they attract bees and boost the local ecological environment. 

American Elm

The American Elm is one of the most commonly seen and iconic trees in American history. They make up a huge number of the trees in Central Park and are commonly seen throughout the Mid-South as well. We recommend them for residential planting because of how the branches grow away from the trunk, automatically creating some amazing shade, and look gorgeous stretched across a street. They like to be planted on hills and near rivers, another reason why they are a great fit for Memphis. 

Eastern Redbud

The Eastern Redbud is the smallest tree that we have listed and grows to be about medium size. Though not known for their shade, they are one of the stand-out stunners in springtime when they grow their distinctive pink blooms! They are a great local tree that is good for pollinators with their early blooms and their leaves turn dark and beautiful in the fall as well. If you are looking for a smaller tree that will make a splash, then the redbud might be the one for you!

Which Trees are Best to Plant in the Summer

Reach Out to Red’s Tree Service for Support!

After over 40 years of business in the Mid-South, our team at Red’s really knows a thing or two about trees. We are here to support you as you plant, prune, remove, and care for your trees across Memphis and beyond. Give us a call to get an estimate, or ask our professional advice for which types of trees would suit your yard and your dreams. We can’t wait to partner with you!

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Why Do Trees Suddenly Lean

leaning tree

Need help figuring out why your tree is leaning? Understanding why trees suddenly lean will help you prevent catastrophic damages and them falling on your property. gathered the following information to help you accurately identify why your tree is leaning and what you can do to protect your property, home, and well-being.

Why Do Trees Lean?

Some trees lean, and you may have wondered why this happens. Consider the following reasons trees lean, what it means for their health and safety, and what you should do about it.

There are multiple reasons why trees lean. The most common cause is strong prevailing winds or heavy snow and ice loads pushing the tree from its vertical axis. Trees naturally tend to grow straight up towards the sun, but environmental factors like wind and snow can cause them to tilt. Over time, this tilt can become more pronounced, resulting in a leaning tree.

tree with snow leaning

Another reason for tree lean is the uneven weight distribution on the trunk. Trees with a heavy canopy (on one side) or those growing on a slope may develop a lean towards the lighter side to maintain balance. This is common in deciduous trees that have lost multiple or heavy branches on one side.

Tree lean can also be a sign of root rot or damage. A tree’s root system is fundamental for providing a tree’s stability and anchorage. A tree may lean when roots rot or are damaged due to soil erosion or compaction. This is common in areas with a high water table or soil prone to erosion.

Note: Some tree species are more prone to leaning than others. Conifer trees, like pines, are more likely to develop a lean due to their shallow root system. While trees like oaks have deep taproots that provide greater stability and reduce the risk of leaning.

While some tree lean is natural and harmless, excessive leaning can indicate a severe health issue. A leaning tree may indicate root rot, a fungal disease that can cause a tree’s root system to weaken and ultimately fail.

Tip: If you notice a tree leaning significantly, it’s crucial to have it inspected by a professional arborist quickly to determine the cause and assess the risk of the tree falling.

When to Worry about a Leaning Tree

For property owners, a leaning tree can be an alarming cause for concern. While some tree lean is natural and harmless, excessive leaning can indicate a health issue that must be quickly addressed. Here are some factors in determining whether a leaning tree is a cause for concern:

Degree of Lean – If your tree is leaning at an angle greater than 15 degrees, it may be a sign of a significant problem. Trees severely leaning can be dangerous and may need to be removed to ensure people’s and property’s safety.

Leaning Speed – If you notice the tree has started to lean suddenly or at a fast pace, it may indicate an advanced health issue. This could result from root damage or other underlying problems that must be addressed quickly.

Tree Condition – If your tree has dead or broken branches, signs of decay, or other visible damage, it may be more likely to lean. A weakened tree may not withstand strong winds or other environmental factors, leading to a more significant lean.

Location – If the leaning tree is growing near a building or other large structure, it could pose a significant risk. In such cases, it’s crucial to have the tree inspected by a professional arborist to assess the tree’s health and risk and determine the best course of action.

If you notice a leaning tree on your property, don’t delay in deciding when to remove it. Taking prompt action is crucial because waiting can significantly increase the risk of it falling and causing catastrophic or life-threatening injury.

Tip: An arborist can inspect the tree, determine the cause of the lean, and recommend the best course of action, whether pruning, cabling, or removal. Protecting your tree is paramount to ensuring your family and property’s safety.

What is Phototropism

Phototropism is a plant’s natural response to light. It’s a process in which a plant’s cells respond to the direction and intensity of light, causing the plant to grow, lean, or move toward the sun or light source.

Trees also utilize phototropism to grow toward the sun. When a tree’s leaves or branches are shaded by other trees or structures, the tree will instinctively grow towards the light source to ensure maximum exposure to sunlight. This allows the tree to produce maximum energy through photosynthesis.

The phototropic response in trees is controlled by hormones called auxins. Auxins are produced in the growing tips of the tree’s shoots and are transported down the stem, where they promote cell elongation (on the tree’s shaded side). This process causes the tree to bend towards the sun, resulting in positive phototropism.

Positive phototropism is crucial for a tree’s healthy growth. Without it, trees may be stunted or malformed from inadequate exposure to sunlight.

Note: Phototropism allows trees to adjust growth patterns in response to changing light conditions, like the sun’s shifting angle during different seasons.

Leaning Trees

In this article, you discovered several reasons that trees lean and what you can do to keep your property, home, and loved ones safe.

Knowing what causes trees to lean will help you take swift and appropriate action to save or remove your tree.

Failing to quickly identify and properly address the potential cause of your leaning tree may result in catastrophic damages to your property or injury to a person.


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Keep These Things in Mind When Mulching Around Your Trees

Mulching around trees It’s that time of year, again… time to mulch around trees. Oftentimes, you see landscaping companies dumping foot-tall mounds of mulch around trees– well that’s not good, because it suffocates the tree(s). Ideally, a 2”-to-3” layer of mulch works best. It should extend far enough to reach out to a tree’s “drip line,” which is defined as the area where the outermost circumference of a tree canopy drips water from and onto the ground.

The Advantages of Mulching in the Spring

Why add mulch each Spring? Mulch not only gives your landscaping a more “finished” look, but it also helps prevent weeds at the base of the tree, while helping maintain consistent soil temperatures and retaining moisture there. Meanwhile, mulch also acts as a good buffer between the base of a tree and things like weed wackers and mowers.

If you have old mulch from last year or years prior, it tends to get matted, which can prevent air and water from getting to the tree’s root system as needed. Therefore, take a rake and break it up/spread it out.

Getting the Mulch

For those of you who want to buy “new” mulch this year, shredded bark or wood is the most common landscape mulch. While it’s cheap and easy to apply, it doesn’t add as many nutrients to the soil as other mulch materials do. Did you know it’s fine to include grass clippings in your mulch? Grass adds nutrients! Ideally, use sun-dried clippings as mulch, avoiding grass that has been treated with chemicals and/or pest controls. Besides grass clippings, other nutrient-rich, organic mulch options include leaves that have been aged at least nine months, as well as straw, compost, pine needles and even cardboard/newspapers. Should you want to go the inorganic mulch route, some of those materials include plastic, polyester garden fabrics, stone, and carpet remnants.

Finally, what are the best two times each year to mulch? First, you want to mulch in the spring after the ground has thawed. Then, later on during the year, apply another two inches of mulch in the fall, after the ground has frozen. Mulch helps insulate and protect trees (and plants) year-round.

If you need help with the trees on your property, contact Big Foot Tree Service today.

The post Keep These Things in Mind When Mulching Around Your Trees appeared first on Big Foot Tree Service.

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Tree Borers: Destructive Insect Pests

Tree borers and wood boring insects make their homes in the bark, trunks and branches of trees.  Living up to their name, these larvae ‘bore’ in trees, laying eggs and feeding inside roots, trunks and branches and tunneling beneath the bark.  As a result of their activity, trees sustain serious internal damage.  Specifically, injuries restrict the tree’s ability to transport water and nutrients and can ultimately kill the host plant.  Borers are some of the most destructive pests of trees and shrubs.

Tree Species at Risk

Some borers have specific host plants.  Dogwood borer and hemlock borer are examples.  However, others can infest a variety of tree species.  It’s important to note that only a few borers attack healthy trees.  Most infestations occur in trees that are already under stress.  For instance, trees growing in poor soil conditions or those that are subject to extreme weather such as drought.  Further, recently transplanted young plants are targets for infestation.  Maintaining tree health is an important step in preventing infestation from tree borers.  Be sure to fertilize based on soil analysis and water trees properly during dry periods.

Signs of Tree Borer Infestation

In the early years of an infestation, there may be few signs as the pests bore inside the plant, creating irreversible internal injuries.  As infestation progresses, exit holes where adults emerge may be visible in the trunk or branches.  The plant may lose leaves.  In some cases, the beetles will leave a sawdust-like debris, called frass, nearby.

black twig borer
tree borers feeding damage

Common Tree Borers

While there are hundreds of wood boring species that are not considered pests, some species pose a serious risk to trees.  Bark beetles are one group that cause widespread damage.  Species like Southern pine beetle are known for the destruction of evergreen trees, but some others like elm bark beetle and oak bark beetles have deciduous trees as their hosts.

Even native species such as bronze birch borer can be problematic, particularly for trees planted in urban and suburban environments.  Though well-known invasive species are often the most infamous of tree borers.  The emerald ash borer is a metallic green beetle that has killed hundreds of millions of ash trees since its arrival in North America.  It is imperative to treat an ash tree or American fringe tree if the emerald ash borer is nearby.  Another example is Asian longhorned beetle.  Attacking a broad range of hosts including maple, horse chestnut, willow, birch and elm, this pest will infest and kill healthy and stressed trees alike.  Being aware of invasive species like these is important to helping prevent further spread and damage.

adult emerald ash borer
adult asian longhorned beetle

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Tree Seedlings for A Greener Tomorrow

Every tree we plant makes a difference.  That’s why we established the Bartlett Legacy Tree Program in 2014.  Through this program, Bartlett Tree Experts arborists distribute seedlings in schools, at events, and for reforestation efforts.  The busiest time of year for the program is April, when we celebrate both Earth Day and Arbor Day.

20,000+ Tree Seedlings Distributed

Local offices across our operating areas spend these holidays in their local communities, sharing the importance of trees — and the importance of caring for them.  You can find Bartlett people at Arbor Day and Earth Day celebrations, at local garden centers and nurseries and participating in school activities.  This year, we participated in a day of service at Penn State Mont Alto.  We hosted a tree identification workshop at a high school in Massachusetts.  We raced for the planet at the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher.  And, we gave away over 20,000 tree seedlings in the process of these and other community events.

Bringing Trees and People Together

Trees are our business, and our passion.  It’s energizing to share that passion with others.  Handing out seedlings is a way to bring people and trees together and presents an opportunity to share our knowledge for a better world.

The seedlings we distribute are selected by geographic region.  As such, the focus is on increasing diversity of native tree populations.  Common species include bur oak, bald cypress, dawn redwood and birch.  During these giveaways, we can help educate people on these species and requirements for their care in urban and suburban landscapes.  Further, we can share how critical native species are for pollinators and the livelihood of local wildlife.

Years from now, these tiny trees will have grown into mature specimens that help clean the air, cool our cities and make our world more beautiful.  That’s something special to be a part of!

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Trees and Soil Fungi

When caring for trees, it’s easy to see fungi as the enemy since it often causes disease and decay. However, there are mycorrhizal fungi that help trees. Symbiotic associations between trees and soil fungi are absolutely critical for optimum tree health and growth.

heart shape soil

Benefits of Soil Fungi

Mycorrhiza is a symbiotic relationship, a biological interaction that is mutually beneficial, between a fungus and a plant. In this case, the fungi exist in the tree’s root system. The mutual relationship provides a home and carbohydrates for the fungi.  For the tree, presence of the fungi make it easier for it to get moisture and more nutrients from the soil.  The result is better growth and root development.

Creating a Healthy Soil Environment

There is no question scientifically that mycorrhizal fungi benefit trees. Even so, debate still exists about how to best encourage these associations. Most research shows that plants perform better with mycorrhizas. However, only a few experiments show any benefit to trees when adding mycorrhizal fungi are to soil.

Many times this is because spores in store-bought mycorrhiza packs are dead on arrival. Product selection is also important because trees have very specific fungal associates, which vary based on species, environmental conditions, soil type and more.

Perhaps the most important reason several studies show little benefit from adding mycorrhizal fungi to trees is that no attention was paid to improving the soil conditions in these studies. Soils that lack mycorrhizas are usually already in poor shape. For example, they may be too hot, too dry or wet, or lack organic matter or oxygen. Without first addressing the soil problems, any added fungi will soon perish.

A better option is to start by creating a soil environment in which natural and applied mycorrhizas can flourish. Properly mulching trees, de-compacting soils, managing moisture, and adding organic matter are all methods for improving soil biology. By creating a soil environment as similar as possible to the forest floor, trees and their beneficial microbes will thrive.

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How to Tell if a Tree Is Dying

Signs of a dying tree include loss of foliage and dieback

Need help figuring out if your tree is dying and what to do about it? Recognizing the signs of a dying tree will help you get professional help to save or remove it before it falls, causing catastrophic damage or harm. gathered the following information and signs of a troubled or dying tree and what you can do to help or remove it.

What Causes a Tree to Die

While trees may appear impervious to severe weather and their surroundings, there are several factors that can cause a tree’s decline and death. These factors include death from the following:

  • Its environment
  • Drought
  • Harmful insects and diseases
  • A catastrophic event or impact
  • A lightning strike
  • Severe weather events (causing blowdown, windthrow, or windsnap)
  • Age-related collapse (starvation)
  • Timber harvesting
Signs of a dying tree include brittle branches and twigs

Note: Sudden tree death can occur from Armillaria root rot, fatal fungal diseases, or drought.

Signs of a Dying Tree

Property owners often see a concerning tree and wonder is my tree dying? Some fail to follow through when they disregard the warning signs. You can prevent catastrophic damages by learning the signs of a dying tree and how to respond to them. These are the most obvious warning signs that a tree is dying:

1. Leaning Tree – Leaning trees may signal damaged or dying roots, structural imbalance, or failure of soil structure. When a tree is leaning more than 15 degrees, this is typically a result of wind (storm) or root damage and is unlikely to recover.

Recommendation: Hire a professional tree service to evaluate the tree’s condition. Leaning trees can sometimes be preserved by cabling or bracing them. However, most leaning trees must be removed.

2. Root Damage – Construction, digging, trenching, and landscaping projects often disrupt or compact the soil around a tree, causing distress or root death. Severe damage can also occur from lawnmowers or weed eaters if you get too close to the trunk or roots.

Recommendation: Consider the following preventive measures:

  • Protect the soil (and roots) within the tree’s drip line by applying a 2 to 3-inch layer of organic mulch.
  • Prevent foot, vehicle, and equipment traffic beneath the tree.
  • Keep digging and trenching activities from disturbing or severing roots.
  • Never allow equipment or material storage under a tree.

Note: If roots have been damaged or severed, have the tree inspected to determine restorative measures or removal.

3. Bark is peeling or falling off – Diseases like hypoxylon canker and boring insects can cause sufficient damage in a tree’s cambium layer to cause its bark to fall off. These pests are opportunistic, typically attacking already distressed trees.

Recommendation: Have a professional tree service inspect the tree to determine what is happening to the tree, how to prevent nearby trees from being infected, and if the tree should be removed.

4. Mushrooms Growing on Trunk or Roots – When mushrooms grow from a tree trunk or roots there is typically extensive decay occurring in its heartwood. Mushrooms are the fruiting structure of most fungi and should be addressed soon as they are seen around a tree trunk or roots.

Signs of a dying tree include mushroom growth on the trunk and roots

Recommendation: When caught early, you can save the tree by pruning infected limbs. You can also apply fungicides if the disease hasn’t spread. However, prevention is the best solution. Proper watering, sunlight, mulching, fertilizing, and fungicide applications can help prevent fungal infections.

Note: When mushrooms appear on a tree, it is often too late to save the tree. Seek immediate professional help.

5. Brittle and Fallen Branches – Frequently seeing sticks or twigs on the ground and brittle or weak tree branches may be a sign of diseased or dead branches, which could signal the majority of the tree is already dead. This symptom may be caused by drought stress, over-fertilization, pest infestations, or disease.

Recommendation: Have your tree evaluated ASAP. With professional help, you might save your tree.

6. Oddly-Shaped or Chlorotic Foliage – Oddly-shaped or discolored tree leaves typically represents a soil or root problem. It may signal severe root rot or be an insect infestation.

Recommendation: Ensure your soil isn’t mismatched with your tree (nutrients, pH, etc.) by testing the soil (contact an arborist or local university extension). If it’s not a soil issue, consult a tree professional for a proper evaluation and diagnosis.

Learning to Identify Dying Trees

In this article, you discovered how to recognize the signs of a dying tree, when to remove it, and what actions to take to save it or prevent further decline.

Knowing how to identify a dying tree will help you take prompt action to either save or remove it.

Failure to recognize when a tree is troubled or dying will leave your property and well-being at risk if the tree starts shedding limbs, collapses, or falls.


Todd’s Marietta Tree Services

Marietta, GA
(678) 505-0266

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10 Alpharetta Tree Diseases – Identification & Treatment

Tree diseases cause severe damage to branches foliage and fruit appearing as scabs die back and mushroom conks

Need help identifying a potential tree disease? Recognizing when your tree is diseased will help you take prompt action to prune, treat, or call in an arborist or professional to halt the disease’s progression. gathered the following information to help you identify tree diseases and how to effectively treat your tree to prevent further decline or death.

What Does a Diseased Tree Look Like?

Diseased trees can physically manifest their ailments in multiple ways. Some common indicators of a diseased tree include:

• Low hanging dead or dying branches (lacking bark and have no leaves)
• Dropping dying or dead branches
• Weak, V-shaped branch unions, where two branches have grown together
• An excessively thick or dense canopy that could easily break
• Excessive wilting
• Leaf problems (spots, holes, odd colored, or deformed leaves)
• Fuzzy or moldy patches
• Water sprouts (water shoots) grow on the trunk or roots

Note: An alarming sign of advanced tree disease is when a tree starts to lean. This is an urgent problem requiring immediate professional attention.

Common Tree Diseases

The following tree diseases and their host species may require a professional assessment to determine an effective treatment plan. For an arborist in Alpharetta, we can help, or find a local arborist by visiting A third option is to collect samples of the tree and have them analyzed at your local university extension.

Consider the following 10 tree diseases:

1. Dutch Elm Disease (DED) (Ophiostoma ulmi) – A fungal disease that infects elm trees, causes rapid decline and death and is spread by bark beetles.

Tree diseases cause severe damage to branches foliage and fruit like Dutch elm disease

Treatment: When caught early, DED infections can be pruned out, and the tree can be protected by fungicides. Several DED-resistant elm varieties are available.

2. Oak Wilt (Ceratocystis fagacearum) – A fungal disease that affects oak trees and is spread through root grafts and sap-feeding, boring beetles.

Treatment: Trees infected with or have died from oak wilt should be completely removed, properly treated, and destroyed to prevent spore mat development. These treatments may include debarking, chipping or splitting, drying, and burning the wood.

3. Apple Scab (Venturia inaequalis) – A fungal disease that affects apple trees and causes leaf spotting and premature leaf drop.

Treatment: Scab control for edible apple and crabapple trees includes captan, lime-sulfur, and powdered or wettable sulfur applications.

Tree diseases cause severe damage to branches foliage and fruit like apple scab

4. Pine Wilt Disease (Bursaphelenchus xylophilus) – A bacterial disease that affects pine trees and is spread by pinewood nematodes and pine sawyer beetles.

Treatment: Once infected with pinewood nematodes, pesticides are no longer effective. Once a tree is infected, there is no cure for pine wilt, and dead trees left in the landscape become sources of nematodes and pine sawyer beetles. Diseased trees should be destroyed by burning, chipping, or burying.

5. Chestnut Blight (Cryphonectria parasitica) – A fungal disease affecting chestnut trees, causing cankers on the trunk and branches.

Treatment: Chestnut trees with blight cankers can be treated and often cured with mud packs applied to each canker.

6. Black Knot (Dibotryon morbosum) – A fungal disease that affects cherry and plum trees, causing black, warty growths on the branches.

Tree diseases cause severe damage to branches foliage and fruit like black knot

Treatment: Black knot can be controlled by removing all knots and swellings by pruning 3 to 4 inches below the knot during the dormant season. Where infections occur on larger branches, excise infected tissue down to healthy wood.

7. Cedar Apple Rust (Gymnosporangium juniperi-virginianae) – A fungal disease affecting apple trees but is spread by cedar trees.

Treatment: Fungicides with Myclobutanil are most effective in preventing rust. Spray trees when buds first emerge until spring weather becomes consistently warm and dry.

Tip: Fungicides are only effective when applied before leaf spots or fruit infections appear.

8. Fire Blight (Erwinia amylovora) – A bacterial disease affecting apple and pear trees, causing wilting and blackening of the branches. There is no cure for fire blight, only control.

Treatment: Once an infected tree is removed, the fire blight bacteria are also removed. You can safely plant another apple or pear tree in its place (choose a fire blight-resistant variety).

9. Verticillium Wilt (Verticillium dahliae and Verticillium albo-atrum) – A fungal disease that affects a wide range of trees and causes foliage chlorosis and wilting. There is no effective treatment for verticillium wilt.

Tree diseases cause severe damage to branches foliage and fruit like verticillium wilt

Treatment: Prune out affected branches and dispose of them immediately. Do not use infected wood for chips for landscape mulch.

Tip: Sanitize all pruning equipment before moving to another tree to prevent the spreading of the disease.

10. Sudden Oak Death (SOD) (Phytophthora ramorum) – A fungal disease affecting oak trees, causing leaf spots, cankers, and rapid death.

Treatment: Reliant Systemic Fungicide is a phosphonate compound injected into the tree or mixed with a surfactant and sprayed on the trunk for absorption through its bark.

Note: This treatment is not a cure but can help protect trees from infection and effectively suppress disease progression in early infection stages.

Tree Diseases

In this article, you discovered information to help you identify and treat several tree diseases before they cause your tree’s rapid decline or death.

Knowing how to identify when your tree is diseased will help you spring into action with effective treatments or get professional help.

Your inability to detect or identify when your tree is diseased can lead to rapid decline, death, and catastrophic personal or structural damage when it collapses or falls on your property.


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How Ice Storms Affect Your Trees

If you live in the MidSouth, you’ve likely experienced some pretty extreme weather over the years. Though our area isn’t known for epic snowfall, over the last couple of years we have had some serious ice storms that may or may not have impacted the trees and environment on your property. Just because you don’t experience any damage during an ice storm doesn’t mean there aren’t longer-term impacts to look out for afterward!

At Red’s Tree Service, we can help you manage the health of your trees long-term, including after an ice storm. Here are a few of the impacts that heavy ice can have on your trees, and what you can do to help maintain them from further damage. 

Take Care of Damage After Storms

If you have trees that lost limbs during an ice storm, it will be important to have that damage evaluated and cared for afterward. It can be dangerous for a tree to lose significant limbs from high, low, or even the crown of the tree. Limb loss can sometimes result in dieback where parts of the tree may die and become more dangerous in future storms later on. 

Sometimes trees will begin growing and produce new limbs at the site where old ones fell. This can be dangerous during future storms as well as these new limbs might be weaker and unable to sustain heavy ice. If there are limbs that have cracked or partially fallen, all it may take is a large gust of wind to have them fall unexpectedly causing damage to whatever it falls on. It will be necessary for a professional to evaluate these impacts on your trees and ensure that they are safe going into another winter. 

Note that trees that have been properly pruned and maintained before the weather gets bad will have a better chance of weathering the storm safely. That’s why it’s important to get regular care and maintenance for your trees throughout the year. But regardless of how well it is cared for, some trees may just have a greater risk of storm damage, or there might just be a fluke!  You never know what will happen, so just be prepared to take great care of your trees in the aftermath. 

Questions From Homeowners

Here are a few of the top questions that we get from homeowners who are trying to take the best care of their trees and their homes and personal safety after experiencing severe ice in their area. 

Can The Tree Be Saved?

Whether or not your trees have sustained too much damage to be saved will often be a matter of evaluation by a professional. There will be many factors to consider, like the age, kind of damage, and placement of the tree, as well as what kind it is. You will need someone like the folks at Red’s Tree Service to take a look and help you decide the next steps. 

If we deem that some limbs or the whole tree will need to be removed for the safety of people and property, our team of experts can come and take care of that efficiently for you. If you have any questions or concerns about a tree’s safety, it really is better to deal with it now rather than wait for another ice storm next winter that could cause catastrophic damage. 

Can You Trim or Repair the Tree Yourself?

While it’s always up to you whether you want to manage the care of your property, we do have some recommended guidelines. Ultimately, if you cannot easily reach the branches with a well-sustained ladder, it’s probably best to leave it to a professional. We don’t want you to suffer any collateral damage from trying to climb up too high without the proper safety equipment or expertise, and your safety is not worth compromising.

Here are a few other factors that you should consider before taking on a tree repair job yourself:

-If a tree has high-hanging limbs that are damaged, don’t attempt to take care of those yourself. Not only will you have to climb higher than you are equipped to, but you also can’t guarantee that the limb won’t harm you or others once it does fall, or at the very least damage property. At Red’s, we have trained professionals and equipment who can make sure that those high branches are tended to safely. 

-Be sure to avoid working on trees or limbs that are near utility or electric lines. This poses a serious threat when not dealt with by professionals.

-When in doubt, err on the side of caution. Trees are huge, heavy, mighty forces that can be unpredictable and dangerous. Make the best decisions you can while knowing that your life is not worth the risk!

How Ice Storms Affect Your Trees

Call A Team You Can Trust

If you are needing to evaluate the health of your trees after the winter weather has passed, give Red’s Tree Service a call. We are ready to help our customers in the MidSouth understand what is going on with their trees, and safely care for them. Let us take the pressure off, knowing that your trees will be safer and healthier, and prepare you for more seasonal changes to come! Call us today to set up an evaluation or quote!

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