By Sandy Perrin
Missoula County Extension Office 

How to tell if your trees are healthy


September 14, 2023


A tree with some dying needles.

In the fall people worry that their pine, spruce, cedar (conifer) trees are diseased or infested with insects. The symptoms that are described on their trees include yellowing and dropping of older needles. In fact, most callers stress that only the tips of branches are still green, while on the insides of branches, needles are browning and dropping to the ground.

Fortunately, what they are seeing are not disease or insect pests. The good news is that fall drop of older needles is normal. Pines and other conifers such as spruce and fir get ready for winter each fall by shedding some...

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