Our very mature white pine trees have lost a lot of needs on the lower branches, some branches are bare while others have orange/brown needles still on them. No green needs until you get farther up the tree. Should we cut those lower branches off? Do we wait til the branches are totally bare and without needles. Will needles come back?
Carver County Minnesota
Thank you for the question. It's not possible to treat a problem without first identifying it. Unfortunately, more information is needed to be able to diagnose your problem because the symptoms you describe could be caused by a number of insects, diseases, or environmental factors. Refer to these Extension publications to learn about environmental, disease, or pest problems of pine and then go out and carefully examine the tree trunk, branches, needles, and growing conditions. You may even need a hand lens to spot some disease signs. These publications also describe any treatment that might be necessary for the various problems.
If you can't identify the problem after reading and examining your tree, try submitting your question again including photos of the problem and the tree in the landscape.
Thank you for contacting Extension.