Goldenrain tree – Fall Leaf Drop

Q: I planted a Goldenrain tree 5 or 6 years ago. Every year in August and September, short branches (about 18 inches long) begin turning yellow, die and drop from the tree. Sometimes green ones fall off.

Dozens of these branches fall off every year. I have sprayed the tree with an insecticide during previous summers and have sprayed with dormant oil during the winter. Can you tell me what is causing this and what I can do about it?

A: The short branch you refer to is technically just a single compound leaf. Just as other trees (maple, poplar, sweetgum, etc) drop their single leaves this time of year, goldenrain tree does the same….except it looks like a small branch to the average gardener.

Trees drop leaves for various reasons…but my observation is that the leaf drop you see on goldenrain trees are common. If the rest of your tree looks healthy, just collect the branches and put them in the compost pile.

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