I have a good-sized (10" trunk 20-25' high) sugar maple next to the
street in front of my house. Last year it was very thin, leaf-wise,
and turned to fall color mid-August. By mid September it had dropped
all its leaves, way earlier than other trees in my Zone 5 neighborhood.
This year its even thinner leaf-wise! I called the village (who
maintains the trees in the parkway, the strip of grass next to the
street) mid-June and they sent a guy out. He said: "Yep, you've got
a problem, we're not sure what. We've scheduled a root inspection, it
might be root-bound."
Well they never got to it (don't know if they will, long story), so
in mid July I fertilized with Espoma Tree-Tone per instructions and
have been watering regularly. No change, but I didn't expect it this
As of now the tree is 2/3 fall color and dropping leaves!
Could any of you give me any suggestions as to what to do or what might
be wrong? It's next to a street, a driveway, and a sidewalk, maybe it's
just not getting enough water? But other parkway trees are doing OK.
We have clay soil, perhaps root-bound is the answer? There are no signs
of insects or disease that I can see.
I plan on getting an arborist involved if today's call to the village
bears no fruit, but I'd like to hear any opinions you might have.