Little gem magnolia

Asked May 27, 2018, 4:52 PM EDT

A month ago, one Little Gem magnolia planted three years ago, started to shed leaves. Initially, I took it as a regular process, but now I wonder if the tree is dead or not. All leaves, except the ones at the end of some branches, are gone. There are some buds, but I don't know if dead or alive. Do you have any idea what it can be? Thanks.

Montgomery County Maryland tree little gem magnolia lost leaves little gem magnolia magnolia winter damage

1 Response

This is probably winter damage. Magnolias were hit hard this winter and many lost leaves. Yours should recover since it still has healthy leaves and buds. Give it time. Be sure to water it during dry spells this summer, so that it is not further stressed.
It may take a year or so to really fill in again.

Never let your broad-leaved evergreens go into winter in dry soil. Last fall was very dry. Fall drought is not uncommon, but these leaves continue to lose moisture all winter and need moisture available to their roots to replace it. Be aware of moisture levels in the fall. Rain gauges are great for this. Last winter was actually fairly dry, too, which exacerbated the problem.

ECN