Magnolia tree shedding in Potomac, Maryland

Asked July 4, 2016, 5:06 PM EDT

The leaves at the top of our western-facing Magnolia tree have come off. Is this a normal or is this a nutrition problem? I am happy to purchase and pound some fertilizer sticks into the ground around the tree The matching Magnolia tree, more sheltered to the east, is fine. This may have happened a few years ago, and the tree recovered.

District of Columbia County District of Columbia trees magnolia tree shedding leaves

1 Response

Your magnolia tree is in severe stress and recovery is questionable. Given the age of the tree and its surroundings, there is tremendous competition in the root zone for available water and nutrients.
If the tree is of special importance to you, you may want to have a certified arborist give you an opinion. If feeding the tree is required, it would be better to give it a deep root feeding which may not be practical for you to perform.
To find a certified arborist in your area please go to, the website of the International Society of Arboriculture, the certifying agency for all arborists.