Dwarf Spruce tree is shedding its needles

Asked October 6, 2017, 1:08 PM EDT

Can you tell me what is wrong with our spruce tree. Do we need to take it down or can we save it?

Anne Arundel County Maryland

1 Response

This shrub is native to Canada and the N. U.S. It grows best in full sun and moist soils but not wet ones. It does not like a lot of stress. Reasons for branch dieback and needle loss includes poor drainage and/or spider mites, a sucking insect. You can look for this. http://extension.umd.edu/hgic/spider-mites-trees-and-shrubs

The spruce spider mite is a cool season mite that feeds in the fall and spring during cooler temperatures. A simple technique for sampling, (especially conifers) is to tap a few terminals or leaves over a piece of white paper. Wait a few seconds and watch for movement. The mites may take a short time before they begin crawling on the paper. If you notice this, you can hose the shrub down with a forceful spray of water.