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Extension > Garden > Diagnose a problem > What's wrong with my plant? > Evergreen Trees and Shrubs > Juniper > Needles turn brown from branch tip

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Juniper > Needles > Needles turn brown from the branch tip down

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  • Image: Phomopsis blight 1
  • Image: Phomopsis blight 2
  • Image: Phomopsis blight 3

Phomopsis blight
Phomopsis juniperivora

  • Branch ends (4-6 inches) turn reddish brown than gray
  • Numerous brown branch tips throughout canopy of larger trees
  • Browning of shoots starts in late spring to early summer, but brown branch tips remain in tree all summer long
  • A gray band with tiny black dots (fungal spore producing structures) forms a division between healthy and dead tissue
  • More information on Phomopsis blight
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  • Image: browned juniper needles
  • Image: browned juniper needles
  • Image: browned juniper needles

Kabatina tip blight
Kabatina juniperi

  • Branch ends (2-6 inches) turn brown than gray
  • Browning of branch ends first visible in February to March
  • Infected branch ends drops from tree by early summer
  • Gray to silver cankers dotted with small, black spots visible at the base of the discolored needles
  • More information on Kabatina tip blight
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  • Image: Salt damage 1

Salt damage

  • Needles turn brown from needle tip down
  • Branches and needles facing road are most severely affected
  • Protection of branches and needles provided by snow cover so damage in these areas is not as severe
  • More information on Salt damage
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  • Image: Rodent damage 1
  • Image: Rodent damage 2
  • Image: Rodent damage 3

Rodent damage

  • Bark is completely chewed from branches and stems
  • Majority of damage occurs in winter and early spring on braches or stems not protected by snow
  • Foliage turns yellow to brown on branches the bark was removed
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  • Image: Juniper scale 1
  • Image: Juniper scale 2
  • Image: Juniper scale 3

Juniper scale
Carulaspis juniper

  • White, spot-like, approximately 1/10 inch diameter cover needles
  • Dull green coloring of foliage is first sign of infestation
  • In high infestations entire plant may look sprinkled with snow
  • Foliage may turn yellow from insects sucking sap from needles, then brown and die as damage ages
  • New growth fails to develop normally on infested branches
  • More information on Juniper scale
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  • Image: Root rot 1
  • Image: Root rot 2
  • Image: Root rot 3

Root rot
Fusarium sp., Rhizoctonia solani, Phytophthora

  • Needles turn brown from the tips of the branches down
  • Roots are dark colored, soft and mushy
  • Occurs only on Junipers in heavy waterlogged soils
  • More information on Root rot

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