Japanese Red Maple
We gave a Japanese Red Maple, which for 16 years has been a wonderful tree. This year it is looking very sad. Lots of dead branches. What can be wrong and can you helpo?
Sussex County Delaware
Japanese red maples are quite sensitive to environmental stresses such as storm winds and fluctuations in temperatures. Wounds from winds and breakage from ice and snow can allow openings for fungal pathogens such as Botryosphaeria. I suspect your tree has some dieback and canker due to fungal opportunists such as Botryosphaeria. The only control is to trim out the worst affected, be careful not to wound the tree near the base, and water during times of drought later this summer. I recommend watering deeply (about 1 inch) once a week if there is no rain.