En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - February 21, 2011

From: Jacksonville, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Trees
Title: Problems with Live Oak tree in Jacksonville FL
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

My live oak tree was planted 13 years ago as a mature young tree. Until last fall, it was full and healthy. Then leaves started turning brown and dropping. The company who cares for our lawn/shrubs looked at it and said it was OK. Now the neighbors' trees are green and full, while ours is dropping a driveway full of brown leaves. A few leaves look like they have been chewed on, but not too many. What can we do to revive this beautiful tree? Thanks!

ANSWER:

Since we are neither entomologists nor plant pathologists, we would like to refer you to this article from the Florida Department of Agriculturee, Forestry Division Common Causes of Oak Mortality. When we in Central Texas hear of the decline of a Live Oak, we immediately think that there might be the presence of Oak Wilt, which has been decimating Live Oaks here. However, this article says that, as of yet, no Oak Wilt has been detected in Florida. On the other hand, this article from the University of Florida Extension Service is titled: Oak Wilt-A Potential Future Threat to Oak in Florida.

We are not too sure your landscapers are the right ones to ask about your trees; in fact, tree problems are sometimes caused by incautious spraying of herbicides or pesticides by landscapers onto grass surrounding the trees. "Weed and feed" fertilizer, which kills broad-leaf weeds in the lawn can also damage the trees, which are themselves broad-leaf plants. We would suggest you either contact a certified professional arborist and ask for an opinion, or contact the University of Florida Extension Office for Duval County. If the trees in your neighborhood are all still looking good, then there is probably a localized reason for yours looking bad.

 

More Trees Questions

Tree for wet area in Central Illinois
July 30, 2010 - I live in Central Illinois. When it rains I get a lot of water in my backyard. What kind of tree would be best to plant in this wet area?
view the full question and answer

Recently planted Monterey Oaks doing poorly in Jourdanton, TX.
September 02, 2013 - We planted 2 nice size Monterrey oak trees in April .they were doing good with new growth on them. But now I have been noticing the leaves are turning brown around the edges. We water about once a wee...
view the full question and answer

Are hackberries harmful to other trees?
March 25, 2009 - A neighbor warned me that a hackberry tree that naturally sprouted up recently will harm the roots of other trees nearby and that it is such a bad tree we should take it down before it gets too big. I...
view the full question and answer

Area under live oaks from Austin
October 08, 2012 - We have many live oaks in our mostly shaded half acre. While I have tried to plant mostly native plants, often beneath them, the plants are showered with leathery leaves, acorns and sap, while oak sp...
view the full question and answer

Trimming a bur oak in Llano, TX
February 06, 2009 - We have a beautiful, large Burr Oak next to our house. This tree has many large lateral branches. I have trimmed dead branches, but no other trimming. It grows a lot of "suckers" during growing sea...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center