maple tree disease
We lost a few sugar maple trees last summer to the tornado. In the same area, we had been losing one tree a year or so, they just gradually lost their leaves over a few years so finally just had to cut them down. Is it ok to plant new ones in the same area, or will they likely succumb to whatever disease was there? Is there a way to prepare the soil or spray the new trees to help prevent it again?
Howard County Maryland
In general sugar maples do not like hot dry areas and can have issues with their roots. They thrive in much cooler areas.
It is difficult to say what the issue was with the declining trees. They may have been stressed due to drought, poor drainage, poor soils, etc. When stressed by these conditions trees can be susceptible to insect and disease problems.
There is no spray to prevent. Select another or several species of trees to plant such as black gum or red maple. Do not plant too deep, Keep the trees well watered, and make sure mulch is no thicker than several inches and keep away from the base of the trunk.
See our website for the planting process and care after planting http://extension.umd.edu/hgic/trees-and-shrubs/selection-purchasing-planting-and-care