Douglas Fir Tree Is Bare And Drying Up

Question From: CALIFORNIA
Q: Hi Nancy, I'm a senior and live in Los Angeles. I have a dying mature Douglas Fir (50yrs plus). I've consulted two arborist (I paid) who said it was not dying but for months, the canopy has become very bare, cones are dropping fast, branches are brittle and dry. I know it's dying. Now, a third arborist is willing to treat it with a 1-time treatment for $955, which I can't afford. Is there anything I can do for it? How can I know if it will actually help the tree even with the treatment? Perhaps you can make me feel a little helpless.

Unfortunately, I don't have a crystal ball, I am not a certified arborist and I live in Michigan. However my guess is your Douglas fir has a water issue. While these trees are drought tolerant, CA has suffered record heat and drought for the past 3 years.  Jan and Feb were also plagued by record breaking Santa Ana winds that will also suck the moisture from the needles of your tree. I would contact your county horticulture extension agent for recommendations and advice. Go to the following website for contact information. 

Find your local county extension office:

Good Luck,