The dilemma of the dying dogwood

Here’s a photo of two mature dogwood trees that are obviously on their way out:

What happened? There’s been no construction in the area since the parking lot was paved several years ago.

Answer on Monday!

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Linda Chalker-Scott

Dr. Linda Chalker-Scott has a Ph.D. in Horticulture from Oregon State University and is an ISA certified arborist and an ASCA consulting arborist. She is WSU’s Extension Urban Horticulturist and a Professor in the Department of Horticulture, and holds two affiliate associate professor positions at University of Washington. She conducts research in applied plant and soil sciences, publishing the results in scientific articles and university Extension fact sheets. Linda also is the award-winning author of five books: the horticultural myth-busting The Informed Gardener (2008) and The Informed Gardener Blooms Again (2010) from the University of Washington Press and Sustainable Landscapes and Gardens: Good Science – Practical Application (2009) from GFG Publishing, Inc., and How Plants Work: The Science Behind the Amazing Things Plants Do from Timber Press (2015). Her latest effort is an update of Art Kruckeberg’s Gardening with Native Plants of the Pacific Northwest from UW Press (2019). In 2018 Linda was featured in a video series – The Science of Gardening – produced by The Great Courses. She also is one of the Garden Professors – a group of academic colleagues who educate and entertain through their blog and Facebook pages. Linda’s contribution to gardeners was recognized in 2017 by the Association for Garden Communicators as the first recipient of their Cynthia Westcott Scientific Writing Award. "The Garden Professors" Facebook page - "The Garden Professors" Facebook group - Books:

7 thoughts on “The dilemma of the dying dogwood”

  1. Hmmmm … either slow suffocation due to the parking lot installation, or slowly burned to a crisp after the larger trees around them (shading them) were removed ?

  2. my first guess is that these dogwoods have gone on to a better place from natural causes. i know dogwoods are generally short lived and these look to have reached their peak. there are many possible “stressers” in this photo(soil compaction, heat island, trenching to run electricity to that light pole, any salt applications in the winter). the other plants look fine, blurry, but fine. so i am guessing old age.

  3. I’m inclined to go along with the multiple stress decline syndrome. Doesn’t really have the antracnose look and there really are a lot of potential stressors. Lets face it, multiple stress syndrome is the key to many landscape tree losses. Its rare for one causal agent alone to do the job. One agent predisposes the tree to next maladay lurking around the site and eventually something finishes the job and becomes the culprit.

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