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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.

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

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Tuesday - June 09, 2009

From: West Haven, CT
Region: Northeast
Topic: Diseases and Disorders
Title: Diseased cypress trees in Connecticut
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Cypress trees in Connecticut browning on interior. Tips of longer limbs completely brown, single limbs dying one at a time, sap oozing out of mainstem underneath dying limb. I do not see any canker and do not believe it is cedar apple rust. Should I spray fungicide? What would make sap ooze from stem and kill individual limbs one at a time? Need help fast.

ANSWER:

You don't say what cypress tree you have, but Mr. Smarty Plants suspects that it is a Leyland cypress (Cupressocyparis leylandii (syn. Callitropsis x leylandii).  It is a hybrid of two native trees that would have never met in nature—Cupressus macrocarpa (Monterey cypress), native to California, and Cupressus nootkatensis (Alaska cedar), native to Alaska.  I don't think we can diagnose your trees disease from here, although one of the cankers (Seridium sp. or Botryospaeria dothidea) sounds likely.  Here is information on the cankers and their treatment from North Carolina State University and from Alabama Cooperative Extension System. Your best bet, however, is to contact the Connecticut Cooperative Extension System for information on diseases of the cypress in Connecticut and possible treatment measures.  On their home page click on "Find an Expert" and you can find the contact information for agents who specialize in trees in your area.

 

 

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