low needle density on mature red pine

Asked June 17, 2017, 1:48 PM EDT

I have three 10 to 12 inch diamitor red pine on our lake lot the look sick and have low needle density on lower branches and even in the crown, but to a lesser extent. The younger pines look fine. The soil is well drained (gravel) and is quite open with good wind circulation. The other trees look health including all the spruce. Are these trees doomed or is there hope? Some of the needles are brown from the tip half way to the base of the point of attachment to the branch.

Otter Tail County Minnesota

1 Response

Thank you for the question. Diagnosing tree problems in this format is challenging and without some good photos of the entire trees and close ups of the needles it is hard to say what the problem is. It could be insect pests, disease, or cultural factors like soil problems, too much or too little water, mechanical injury from construction projects and so on. We can provide some information that might be helpful to you in figuring out what is ailing your trees. Please use our self diagnostic program for pine trees and see if you can narrow the problem down: http://www.extension.umn.edu/garden/diagnose/plant/evergreen/pine/
You may be able to figure it out yourself but if not, submit your question again including good photos and we will try to help you.

Thank you for contacting Extension.