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Our cork screw willow tree looks very sad this year!
It hardly has any leaves, only at the top! And the twigs are dying back turning brown/black in colour!
Does anyone know what this is and what I can do about it.
Tell us more about it - where is it planted and how big is it?
Can you post a picture please?
Have a look at this, hope this helps
Search advice Willow anthracnose, scab and canker
Three important diseases of willows in the UK are anthracnose, scab and black canker. They harm the trees and can make them unsightly.
thanks a lot Buddyboy.
there are no spots on the leaves at all!
is it possible the diseases you mentioned appear without spots on the leaves?
It doesn't sound good Kleeblatt.
You couldn't damage a main root without knowing you'd done so and willow can put up with that sort of thing anyway. I doubt if wood chip have any adverse effects either.
Is it grafted? If so does all look well there, no rot or damage anywhere on the trunk?
I don't think you can post photos from a phone which is a pity.
If there are healthy bits I'd take a cutting or two.
Look for irregular shaped raised black lesions on young shoots
and also look for black shrivelled shoots
and are there any rust coloured spots
also look at the leaves that have fell
I will post some pictures now.
Also I looked at old pictures from this year and back in May the tree looked as usual. And then all of a sudden it shed its leaves.
Would a disease not come on slowly?
Any advise is much appreciated, I really love this tree!
this is how the fallen leaves look like
this is how a twig looks like which has broken off
this is how twig looks like which seems to have something - there are only a few of them looking like this!
You either need to cut it right back to healthy wood, water well and feed, or - as I have done - take a couple of good healthy twigs, plonk them in a glass of water and wait a week or 2. They will readily sprout roots and hey presto - new saplings.
Other than those bits of advice, it's hard to know what to say. Sorry about your tree, but sadly, everything keels over at one point or another. This is the 'joy' of gardening: It never quite turns out as we dreamt, and things change at an alarming pace - because they can. There isn't one single dedicated gardener on the planet, who has ever stood back with a smug and satisfied look on his face, arms crossed, and who, beaming at his handiwork, says "My work here is done!"
this is how the tree looks like
kleeblat, any idea how old the tree actually is?
They don't actually live all that long... Here is a site I found information on. It's American, so climate information and zone differences are not relevant, but it's informative...
is it possible that it is a reaction on the storms we had last fall? it is noticable that only thinner parts of the twigs are affected!I will feed it well over the summer and see what happens.
It does not look like any of the mentioned diseases to me!
I started to cut off the dead twigs - the question is will it help or does it need to be chopped further with the chain saw?
You said `it is not showing any symptoms of the above diseases' but looking at your 4 pictures you showed us, the 3rd picture for me is typical of Anthracnose, you have long black lesions on the stem and if you go down about 6 inches where a twig has formed there is also a blackening, these are supposed to be cut off promptly, and I get the impression that this has been going on for a while
You need to look for these on the tree and cut bellow unaffected branches these need to be burned and your tools sterilised after pruning, you will need to read the info I gave you above on the RHS web site
It may restrict further infection by pruning but it will all need to be pruned out and there is still no guarantee that this will be successful, its your choice