Serviceberry Leaves Turn Yellow And Start Dropping

Question From: K. Russell - Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States
Q: I have an older,large serviceberry tree that blooms nicely each spring but immediately after, the leaves yellow and start dropping. By mid summer it is 3/4 defoliated. An arborist is treating it for scab but this has not stopped the leaf loss. What could be going on?

A: Serviceberry is a member of the rose family and is subject to many of their diseases, one of which is leaf spot that causes leaf yellowing and loss. Trees can be effected by more than one disease or issue. Trees can also suffer from the effects of drought two years after the fact. Serviceberry needs moist soil so I recommend you water it well weekly if it does not get 1 inch of water a week. In ground irrigation does not provide sufficient water for trees. I would also mulch around the tree. Best And Happy Yardening, Nancy