Yews are a popular evergreen shrub that are known for their ease of care and their ability to thrive in a variety of conditions. However, sometimes yews can turn yellow, which can be a cause for concern for gardeners. Yew turning yellow can be a sign of a variety of issues, ranging from water problems to insect infestations.
Understanding why yews turn yellow is important for gardeners who want to keep their shrubs healthy and thriving. By identifying the causes of yellowing, gardeners can take steps to prevent and treat the issue.
Some common causes of yellowing include water problems, mineral deficiencies, insect attacks, and pathogen infections. Each of these issues requires a different approach to treatment and prevention, so it’s important to accurately identify the cause of the yellowing before taking action.
Preventing and treating yew yellowing can be a straightforward process once the cause has been identified. Gardeners can take steps to improve soil drainage, adjust watering schedules, and use insecticides or fungicides as needed.
With proper care and attention, yews can recover from yellowing and continue to thrive in gardens and landscapes.
- Yew yellowing can be caused by a variety of issues, including water problems, mineral deficiencies, insect attacks, and pathogen infections.
- Identifying the cause of yellowing is crucial for proper treatment and prevention.
- Gardeners can take steps to prevent and treat yellowing, such as improving soil drainage, adjusting watering schedules, and using insecticides or fungicides as needed.
- Willow Tree Leaves Turning Yellow
- Why Is My Yucca Plant Turning Yellow?
- Serviceberry Leaves Turning Yellow
Understanding Yew Yellowing
Yews are evergreen shrubs or trees that are commonly grown in gardens and landscapes for their attractive foliage and ability to form hedges. However, yellowing of the yew foliage can be a common problem that can detract from their beauty.
Yellowing of yew foliage can be caused by a variety of factors, including environmental stress, disease, and pests. Some of the most common reasons why yews turn yellow include:
- Overwatering: Yews are sensitive to water-logged soil, and overwatering can lead to root rot and yellowing of the needles.
- Poor drainage: Yews prefer well-drained soil, and planting them in heavy clay soil or in areas with poor drainage can lead to yellowing of the needles.
- Nutrient deficiencies: Yews require certain nutrients, such as iron and magnesium, to maintain healthy foliage. Deficiencies in these nutrients can lead to yellowing of the needles.
- Pests: Yews can be attacked by pests such as spider mites and scale insects, which can weaken the plant and lead to yellowing of the needles.
- Disease: Yews can be affected by diseases such as Phytophthora root rot and fungal infections, which can cause yellowing and browning of the needles.
To prevent yellowing of yews, it is important to ensure that they are planted in well-drained soil and not overwatered. Regular fertilization with a balanced fertilizer can also help prevent nutrient deficiencies. In addition, regular inspection for pests and diseases can help prevent problems before they become severe.
If yellowing of the needles is severe, it may be necessary to prune the affected branches to promote new growth. In some cases, it may also be necessary to apply fungicides or insecticides to control pests or diseases.
Yew Turning Yellow – 4 Common Problems
Yews are a popular evergreen shrub known for their dense, green foliage and easy maintenance. However, if you notice your yew shrub turning yellow, it is an indication that something is wrong. Here are some possible causes of yew yellowing.
1. Soil and Water Conditions
Yews prefer well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter. Wet soils, heavy clay content, and poor drainage can lead to root rot and yellowing of the foliage.
Overwatering or watering too frequently can also cause the roots to become waterlogged, leading to yellowing of leaves. Sandy soils, on the other hand, do not retain enough moisture and can cause drought stress, leading to brown, dying foliage.
2. Pests and Diseases
Yews are susceptible to a variety of pests and diseases that can cause yellowing of the foliage. Mealybugs, scales, and black vine weevils are common insect pests that can infest yew shrubs and cause yellowing of leaves.
Fungal diseases such as Phytophthora root rot and crown and root rot can also cause yellowing of leaves and lead to the death of the plant.
3. Planting and Environmental Factors
Improper planting and environmental factors can also cause yellowing of yew foliage. Yews should be planted with their trunk flares exposed and not buried too deep. Drought stress, winter damage, salt damage, and deer browsing can also cause yellowing of leaves. Pruning, thinning, and dieback can also result in yellowing foliage.
4. Nutrient Deficiencies
Yews require a balanced supply of nutrients to maintain their green foliage. Nitrogen deficiency can cause yellowing of leaves, while iron deficiency can cause yellowing between the veins of the leaves.
Chelated iron can be added to the soil to correct this deficiency. Fertilizer containing potassium and phosphorus can also help maintain the vigor of the yew shrub and prevent yellowing of leaves.
Prevention and Treatment of Yew Yellowing
Yews are popular evergreen shrubs that can add a touch of greenery to any garden. However, yellowing of the foliage can occur, which can be a sign of various problems. In this section, we will discuss how to prevent and treat yew yellowing.
1. Appropriate Watering and Soil Management
One of the main reasons for yew yellowing is overwatering or poorly drained soil. Yews do not tolerate wet feet and require well-drained soil. Clay soils are particularly problematic as they retain water, while sandy soils dry out too quickly.
Therefore, it is important to ensure that the soil is well-draining and does not become waterlogged. To improve soil drainage, add soil amendments such as compost or manure.
It is also essential to water yews appropriately. Yews require moderate moisture, and the soil should be kept moist but not wet. Overwatering can lead to root rot, which can cause yellowing and dieback. Therefore, it is important to water yews deeply but infrequently, allowing the soil to dry out between watering.
2. Pest and Disease Control
Yews can be susceptible to various pests and diseases, which can cause yellowing and other symptoms. Common insect pests include mealybugs, scales, and black vine weevils. Fungi such as Phytophthora species can cause crown and root rot, while insect pests can damage the foliage.
To prevent and control pest and disease problems, it is important to monitor yews regularly for signs of infestation. If pests or diseases are detected, appropriate measures such as fungicides or horticultural oils and insecticidal soaps can be applied.
3. Proper Planting and Environmental Care
Proper planting and environmental care can also help prevent yew yellowing. Yews should be planted in well-drained soil with a pH of 6.0 to 6.5. Alkaline soils can cause iron deficiency, which can lead to yellowing. To address iron deficiency, adding chelated iron to the soil can help.
Yews also require adequate sunlight and air circulation to thrive. Therefore, it is important to plant them in a location that receives full to partial sunlight and is not too close to sidewalks or roads, which can cause winter damage and salt damage.
Pruning and thinning can also help improve air circulation and prevent the foliage from becoming too dense.
4. Addressing Nutrient Deficiencies
Yew yellowing can also be a sign of nutrient deficiencies, such as nitrogen or iron deficiency. To address nitrogen deficiency, applying a fertilizer with higher nitrogen levels can help. Iron deficiency usually occurs in alkaline soils, and adding chelated iron to the soil can help.
Based on the research, it appears that yews turning yellow can be caused by a variety of factors. Wet or water-logged soil can result in root rot and plant death, so it is important to ensure proper drainage. Additionally, yews growing in very acid soils or very alkaline soils can also experience dieback.
Insect attacks, such as Cottony Camellia Scale, can create a white residue on the foliage and cause yellowing. If this is the case, it is recommended to treat the shrub with insecticides or horticultural oils.
Mineral deficiencies can also cause yellowing, so it may be beneficial to add fertilizer or other soil amendments to address any nutrient imbalances.
If the yew shrub is beyond repair, it may be necessary to consider a replacement. There are many alternatives to yews that can provide similar aesthetic benefits, such as boxwood or holly. It is important to choose a replacement that is well-suited to the growing conditions of the area and fits the desired aesthetic.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why are my yews turning brown in summer?
Yews may turn brown in summer due to a variety of reasons, including drought stress, spider mites, and root rot. It is important to identify the underlying cause before attempting to treat the issue.
If the cause is drought stress, it is important to water the yews deeply and frequently. If spider mites are the cause, insecticidal soap or neem oil can be used to control them. If root rot is the issue, it is important to improve drainage and avoid overwatering.
What causes yew bronzing?
Yew bronzing is typically caused by environmental stressors, such as drought, heat, or cold. Other possible causes include nutrient deficiencies and fungal diseases.
It is important to identify the underlying cause before attempting to treat the issue. If the cause is environmental stress, it is important to provide the yews with proper care and maintenance, such as watering deeply and frequently during droughts and protecting them from extreme temperatures.
If the cause is a nutrient deficiency, fertilization may be necessary. If a fungal disease is present, it may be necessary to apply a fungicide.
What is yew dieback and how to prevent it?
Yew dieback is a condition in which yew trees or shrubs experience a progressive loss of foliage and branches. It is typically caused by environmental stressors, such as drought, heat, or cold, as well as fungal diseases and insect infestations.
To prevent yew dieback, it is important to provide the yews with proper care and maintenance, such as watering deeply and frequently during droughts, protecting them from extreme temperatures, and applying fungicides and insecticides as necessary.
How to fix yellow yew?
Yellowing yews may be caused by a variety of reasons, including nutrient deficiencies, root rot, and insect infestations. It is important to identify the underlying cause before attempting to treat the issue.
If the cause is a nutrient deficiency, fertilization may be necessary. If root rot is the issue, it is important to improve drainage and avoid overwatering. If an insect infestation is present, insecticidal soap or neem oil can be used to control them.
Can dying yews be saved?
In some cases, dying yews may be saved with proper care and maintenance. It is important to identify the underlying cause of the decline before attempting to save the yews.
If the cause is environmental stress, such as drought or extreme temperatures, it is important to provide the yews with proper care and maintenance, such as watering deeply and frequently during droughts and protecting them from extreme temperatures.
If the cause is a fungal disease or insect infestation, it may be necessary to apply fungicides and insecticides.
Can yews be overwatered?
Yes, yews can be overwatered, which can lead to root rot and other issues. It is important to provide yews with proper drainage and avoid overwatering.
Yews prefer well-drained soil and do not tolerate water-logged conditions. If overwatering is suspected, it is important to improve drainage and reduce watering frequency.
Hey, I’m Lisa and I’ve been an avid gardener for over 30 years. I love writing, talking and living in the garden! Feel free to connect with me on my socials below