Don’s Expert Answers: No leaves or shoots 3 months after planting

Question From:
Luke Barry in Lockwood South, Lockwood South Victoria

Nature of problem:
No leaves or shoots 3 months after planting

Type of Plant (if known):
Claret Ash tree (Fraxinus angustifolia Raywood)

Symptoms of Plant Illness (please try NOT to diagnose your problems yourself):
Tree looks alive but is yet to produce new shoots or leaves since being planted

Soil Type (e.g. sandy, clay or loam) OR Potting Mix Type:
Loam for top 10cm then decomposed granite

How often do you water the plant:
About 20 – 30 litres every 2-3 weeks. Soil around the tree is damp and well mulched with old lucerne hay

How many hours of sunlight does the plant get each day:
12 – 13 at present

How long since you planted it:
3 months

Have you fertilised? If so, with what and when:
Some chook manure and straw from the chook shed was added to the hole a few weeks before planting

Is the plant indoors or outdoors:

Is the plant in a pot or in the ground:

What other treatments have you given the plant:

Upload photo if available:

Other Comments:
My question is really around the time of year that Claret Ash trees start to show new growth. The tree was planted as a seedling in July and has shown no sign of new growth. There is a greenish tinge to the trunk and branches which indicates the tree is still alive. It is now the 30th October so I expected to see some development by now.

Hi Luke, It sounds like it is dead to me, but maybe give it another 3 weeks to be sure. Claret Ashes like a well drained dryish position, so the dampness may have killed it. Next time try a Tupelo (Nyssa sylvatica), they love dampness and produce superb deep red Autumn colours. Don