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

Caterpillars on Mountain laurel in Austin
September 11, 2009 - One of our 18+ year old Texas Mountain Laurels seems to be in distress this year. We treated it for caterpillars this Spring but many of the new leaves had been eaten by then. I recently started wate...
view the full question and answer

Browning of Red Western cedars in Medina, OH
April 09, 2009 - I have a row of Red Western Cedars bordering my yard. One week after my lawn people but down spring fertilizer and grub control, they began turning brown. Is there any correlation? If not, what cau...
view the full question and answer

Appropriate use of redbud from Austin
May 04, 2014 - I am considering purchasing a hearts of gold redbud; I am also xeriscaping my front yard. I live in Austin,TX. Will this tree do ok in full Tx sun (8+ hours) with once a week watering? If this...
view the full question and answer

Clear pungent, liquid oozing from oak tree
June 28, 2010 - I have a large oak that over the last few days has been oozing a pungent, non sticky, clear substance from one specific site (no damage) about the size of a dime. It's attracting quite a few gnats, m...
view the full question and answer

Tree for New Jersey shore
May 02, 2008 - I'm looking for a small tree (max. 15 ft. with small spread) that will tolerate salt spray, wind, and full sun at the NJ shore. There is no protection in this location.
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 | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center