Long needle pine trees

Asked October 2, 2015, 3:52 PM EDT

I've noticed for the last two years the long needles are browning and falling far more than previous years. Is this because of the draught? I do have one tree in the back which gets water when the flower bed does, but it is worse than the others. What's the story?

Josephine County Oregon

1 Response

Long needle pines will be either Jeffery Pine or Ponderosa pine in our area. Both of these trees are very drought hardy, but we have had three very hot summers along with the extended dry periods. This can really stress trees. As long as the trees are retaining their needles from the ends of branches, the current seasons growth, the trees will be ok. Depending on how much you water the flower bed, the water may not be getting down deep, or it could be too wet. If your pines show signs of insects boring into the trunks with no pitch trying to plug the drills. That is a sign that the tree is giving up and in very bad shape. If any boring holes are being filled with pitch, it shows the tree is still pretty healthy.