Tulip Poplar – Losing Leaves in Drought

Q: I am concerned about a couple of my larger trees on my property. They are losing a lot of leaves as if it is fall.

A: The leaves they you are seeing are from tulip poplar, a common, large landscape tree. Tulip poplar is among the very first trees to drop leaves when it is hot and dry.

In my observation, tulip poplars usually pull through with little supplemental watering.

On the other hand, I’ve seen numerous oak and white pine trees that seem severely damaged by drought. Although it takes up to five years to reverse the effects of dry soil, watering these trees deeply (one inch) each week in the absence of rain makes sense. Watering can stop in late October.

I have detailed instructions on watering trees here.

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