I bought this European Beech this past spring. It was in nursery soil when I got it and was told it had just been repotted. It budded out well but the pot fell off the bench around May and I had to move it to a new pot and replace some soil (I added a surface based mix af the time because it was what I had). It did well for a while but in the last month its leaves have been browning and drying out. At first I suspected wet roots so I have drilled some holes and started keeping a bamboo skewer in to measure moisture. It does not seem that wet. I have also tried hitting it with a Daconil every couple of weeks. Any thoughts?
I have some new hophornbeam with similar leaves that are doing the same thing. I think it is a case of not enough roots to keep up with transpiration by the large leaves. I figure that things will get better matched next year.
Sigh. I wish I’d seen this post earlier. I had a 4" high European beech that I transplanted into a larger planter box along with some other seedlings and the same thing happened to its leaves. Finally all of the leaves turned brown and I gave up on it. I thought it was some kind of disease/insect. Live and learn.
Like Marty said…
My medium sized (and pot) Beech is doing this. Similar habit every fall. Wind, sun, heat. Just too much for the leaves to deal with. Real bad on small Hazelnut, Hawthorn, and Apple bonsai… Particularly bad this year.
A little late for new leaves this year. They recover. New buds / leaves in spring…
Do you guys think a shadier location would help?
I put min in a location that gets less hot afternoon sun since my theory is that the roots cannot keep up with the foliage in the hottest, driest, sunniest part of the day. I think it slowed or stopped the browning, but being low cost whips from the conservation district I did not keep detailed records.
I am in Scotland where beech is a widespread forest tree in the Lowlands. I have several mature beech bonsai which I have grown for many years. The problem you have is leaf scorch. Juvenile bonsai grow on the forest floor shaded by an overhead canopy of large beech trees and are unable to tolerate sun and wind. Because of their shaded and relatively wind-sheltered environment they have larger leaves than adult trees to catch the limited light and the leaves are therefore very tender. All beech bonsai require overhead shading and protection from wind. I have an extensive beech hedge also. It is a much favoured subject for hedges in Scotland and responds very well to clipping which reduces leaf size and encourages back-budding. Nevertheless, if (or rather when) there are Spring gales, leaves are battered about and show browning and damage. Good luck with your beech bonsai journey.
@At01Dcdf1 … what subspecies of beech? Hedges…
My beech is under 60% shade cloth most of the midday.
At 95F and 15% humidity, smaller pots are ‘dead’ dry in 2 hours. Keep them damp and move to real cool shade.
This isn’t the hottest / dryest summer ever, but real close… And, it’s not over yet. BURNING up here in Washington state…
Fagus sylvatica, (forest beech), which is universal here in Scotland. We never experience summer temperatures as high as 95F and we get a lot of rain since we are the mountainous north of an Atlantic island. Beech woods are found in low lying and generally sheltered positions.