Chlorosis in Trees: Is Your Backyard Affected?

When the foliage of your house plants begins to turn yellow and droop, it's an easy enough situation to remedy. An extra bit of water, some fertiliser, perhaps even changing the soil or transferring the plant to a larger pot—it's not that difficult. It can be somewhat more effort when the same thing happens to one of the trees in your backyard. This yellowing and drooping is a sign of poor health known as chlorosis, wherein the plant has a chlorophyll insufficiency and cannot produce enough carbohydrates. While the scale of the problem makes it an easy fix with a small plant, how do you fix the issue when a tree is affected?

Reasons for Chlorosis

Chlorosis can become present in a tree when it is unable to derive adequate nutrients from the soil around its roots, and there are many reasons why this can be the case.

Consider the typical drainage rates of the ground around the tree. If moisture readily and speedily drains away, is it simply that the tree is not receiving enough water? Think about the opposite situation as well. Is the ground slow to drain, meaning that the tree's roots might have been affected by an excessive level of constant moisture and could in fact be rotting?

Is the soil pH (acidity level) inappropriate for the type of tree? Testing of the soil pH in conjunction with knowing which variety of tree you're dealing with will be necessary, although the soil pH can sometimes be altered (even though these methods will require regular reapplication).

You should also consider the age of the tree. Has it simply come to the end of its natural lifespan?

Your Options

While sometimes a tree can be be treated with more water, an alteration to the soil pH level or even the regular application of fertiliser, a tree with rotten roots or that is simply deteriorating because of old age might require the services of a tree removal company. If the tree does in fact need to be removed, it's best not to delay. An unwell tree can be an unstable tree, meaning it can pose a risk if it was to lose branches or even topple over, which becomes more likely in extreme weather.

When a tree needs to go, it can leave a gap in your view, although of course you can simply replace it with a healthier tree better suited to the soil conditions in your backyard.