Q: I have a twenty-six year old dogwood tree in my sunny front yard that has been slowly dying for three years. I have other dogwoods that look healthy. These trees get water when the lawn gets watered. Any suggestions to keep them healthy?
A: I think you are assuming something that isn’t true. Trees really don’t get much water when the grass above them is irrigated. In the root wars that occur just below the soil line, grass roots are much better equipped to absorb water from the soil before tree roots have a chance. Dogwoods have a typical life span of 25 – 30 years so the one in the front yard is a candidate for the chainsaw. The best way to hasten the younger ones’ demise is to have grass underneath. Remove the grass under your trees and put down mulch.