Large Spruce Tree Branches Sag And Lose Needles From Bottom Up

Question From: Aurora, Ohio, United States
Q: I have about a dozen large pines in my yard; which I think are spruce, which are slowing dying from the bottom up. The branches on many of them sag and all of them are losing needles one branch at a time. This may be important because a dead branch will be surrounded by perfectly health branches. Last week I cut one of them down, because only the top still had branches. The trunk seemed health enough in that I did not find any damage inside any part of the tree. I prune the dead branches and look for bugs and desease, but so far have found nothing. Any ideas on what this is and what I can do to stop the damange?

A: Ross, I recommend you enlist the services of a trained tree doctor, a certified arborist. Many diseases are plant specific so you need a positive ID of the specie of tree. Also trees are suffering from last year's drought and heat, so your trees may have several issues. Timing is also critical for treating diseases so winging it can cost you bucks and the trees may die anyway. Good Luck and Happy Yardening, Nancy.