Arborvitae keep dying

I am now on my fourth replacement for two Arborvitae (Emerald Green), and the general pattern is that they grow for about one season and then start to die. These trees are on the West side of the house, but get at least a full half day of sun. They were planted correctly and well maintained with adequate water and Miracle Grow for evergreens. I'm beginning to suspect the nursery, although they claim that over the years, they have used several sources for trees. They usually come bailed, and we remove the wrapping for planting. There were formerly Red Cedars growing in these locations, one on either side of the house entrance, and they were mature trees when we moved in 20 years ago. We took out the Red Cedars about four years ago when they gave us problems with Apple Cedar Rust on our apple trees, but the cedars were always healthy looking, aside from the rust. It's a real puzzle why these trees keep dying. Since taking out the cedars, there are no signs of the Apple Cedar Rust.
Sherwin D.
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On Wed, 16 Mar 2005 23:26:37 -0600, sherwindu wrote:

Good day Sherwin. Take a look at this page and see if any of these issues are simular to what your experiencing.
http://pep.wsu.edu/hortsense / click ornamentals > arborvitae
I would also caution against fertilizing them too much / too often. Arborvitae are really tough plants that really need little attention short of watering in the hot days of summer.
--
Yard Works Gardening Co.
http://www.ywgc.com
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First, it depends on where you live, e.g., if the ground freezes in winter or not. If evergreens go into winter and haven't been adequately watered, the bitter winter winds will dry out the "needles", which you won't notice till things thaw in spring and you have a bunch of rusty red foliage.
A couple of other things -- most plants need 1" of rain or supplemental water per week. Newly planted trees and shrubs shouldn't be fertilized until they had enough time to establish enough of a root system to support the above ground part of the plant. A general rule of thumb is to hold off on fertilizer one year for every inch of trunk diameter.
Hope this helps! Suzy in Zone 5 Wisconsin

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Hi Suzy, I am just north of Chicago. I did not explain that there are two arborvitae on either side of the entrance to my house. The trees are staggered in age by about one season. They are both watered equally, yet one looks healthy, and the other one died. Either side of the entrance has caused problems, although it is usually the more mature tree (two seasons in the ground) that fails. This time, the pattern was broken because the younger of the two trees developed problems. I did fertilize both trees with Miracle Grow, but can that have the effect of killing off one of them? These were all five foot trees when planted, so we are not talking about young seedlings. These trees being on the West side of the house, get only a half day of full sun, but I don't think that should harm the arborvitae.
Still puzzled,
Sherwin D.
S Orth wrote:

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