dead winterberry and japanese maple #161330 - Ask Extension


dead winterberry and japanese maple #161330

Asked November 26, 2013, 11:56 AM EST

I have winterberry bushes (male and female) and a japanese maple planted near each other. All three have been attacked by something that has caused the leaves to turn brown and drop off, and most of the berries to drop off. The leaves have brown/black spots on them - but didn't see any evidence of insects. Can you help?

New Castle County Delaware

Expert Response


At this point in our growing season and without seeing a sample from the tree and shrubs, I suspect this was more of an issue with the roots of the plants and the fluctuation in moisture that we had this season. Spots on the leaves are not uncommon at this point in the fall, even on evergreens. It would be good to know how long the plants had been established and what the soil and site may be like. However, I would recommend that you wait and monitor these plants in the spring. Due to the extreme fluctuations in soil moisture this season, plant roots have been stressed, and actually the past few weeks have been dry, until now.
I recommend evaluating the plants in the spring and if you still see dieback, please call or take a sample in to the Cooperative Extension office in New Castle County. Please see the web site at:
Thank you for contacting us at Delaware Cooperative Extension.


Nancy Gregory Replied November 27, 2013, 10:18 AM EST

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