My pine trees don’t look so good, in fact they may be dying, what is happening? There are many causes for declining pine tree health. Trees can be easily stressed. Drought, prolonged or repeated, flooding for periods longer than normal, excessive cold or heat, root damage, bark damage can all affect the vitality of the tree. Pines typically do not recover from episodes of stress. In Florida, once pines are stressed, beetles commonly attack resulting in fatal injuries. Beetle damage signs can indicate what is causing the problem. Investigation on your part will determine if you can do anything to save the tree.
Partial needle loss or changes in color are common. If the whole tree is changing color rapidly, and sawdust or resin is oozing onto the bark, take action quickly. You may not be able to save an attacked tree, but you may be able to save others around the infected tree.
Can I Spray Something On My Trees?
It is important to get an accurate diagnosis as to what is causing the decline before taking actions. If the tree is clearly under attack by bark beetles, it may already be dead. Spraying it with insecticides or fungicides will not serve any good purpose.
Will Other Trees Be Affected?
Other pine trees may or may not be affected depending on the type of infecting beetle and if the neighboring trees are stressed. If mature pine trees are close by the attacked tree and it is spring or summer, the beetles can emerge and travel to the next tree.
For tips on diagnosing bark beetle damage and further information refer to: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdffiles/FR/FR39900.pdf