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Yes! Overwatering is one of the biggest issues I see during the hot summer months. It can be difficult to diagnose because many signs of overwatering mimic those of too little water. Learn about four typical symptoms of overwatering:


  1. Your tree's leaves are wilting despite giving it plenty of water. Tree roots do need lots of water to thrive and grow, but they also need to breathe. Soil that is constantly saturated doesn't have enough air pockets in it for plants to breathe. Your tree is, in essence, drowning.

  2. Your tree's leaves are turning brown. An overwatered tree will begin to show brown leaves the same way that it would if it had too little water. The brown leaves may feel wet and limp to the touch. (a tree with too little water may have brown, crunchy leaves)

  3. Blisters or lesions, called edema, appear on your tree's leaves. If a plant has taken in more water than it can handle, the tree's cells may expand and even rupture. Burst cells appear like blisters or lesions. Those lesions may eventually turn dark or white in color.

  4. Roots at the base of the tree appear to be rotting. When the soil around your tree is dense with water, it can cause root rot. This is a fungal disease that can cause the roots to turn grey, brown, or slimy.


Often, by the time your tree is showing physical symptoms of overwatering, it is already in extreme distress. If you have any doubt about whether your tree is receiving adequate water, check out our Composting & Watering video. Fast forward to minute three to learn how to check for soil moisture. If your soil appears wet and you have any of the above conditions, you may want to reduce your watering.


If you have questions about how you might implement these ideas, let’s chat!

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