Shrub Care

Shrub Maintenance

Choosing the right shrub for your landscape can get confusing; there are many factors to consider: hardiness zone, soil status, sun light and direction, drainage and more. While this may seem overwhelming there are plenty of resources to assist you, at the top of this list are the arborists at SavATree, and installation of the appropriate plant in a location where it will thrive ensures its success, health and value for years to come.

Selecting plants for your landscape based solely upon aesthetic appeal may not be a recipe for health and vigor. However, there are surely choices that are both beautiful and hardy. You may want to begin by familiarizing yourself with plants native to your region and hardiness zone. Make certain you understand their water, sun and soil requirements as well as what you can provide and what exists on your property. Your arborist can perform a soil test to ensure the proper conditions are present and assist with choosing a location with adequate sunlight and drainage. You will love the resulting healthy, vigorous, energy efficient landscape with year-round interest that you have created by selecting the right shrubs. Of course, monitoring and maintenance will still need to be performed to keep your property disease and pest free.

Maintenance and Prevention

Shrub Disease Your landscape requires care to ensure its continued health and success. There are cultural practices that prevent measures that you can take to reduce pathogen spread and create conditions less favorable for pest infestation. Cultural practices can include; appropriate site selection, proper planting, removal of undesirable plants, using diverse species on your landscape, raised beds, burlapping, mulching and more, these can be used in combination or alone as necessary for your landscape.

Adjusting inputs to your landscape for seasonal and weather variations will aid in plant success. Water and nutrients are vital components which cannot always be guaranteed naturally and may change periodically, but plants need consistency. Putting sprinklers on a timer and making adjustments based on weather forecasts can not only ensure that your plants get adequate water but save you money. Additionally, testing your soil for nutrient levels and pH will allow you to customize amendments for your landscape.

Common Diseases



University of Massachusetts
Agricultural extension

Boxwood blight caused by the fungus, Cylindricladium pseduonaviculatum, can affect all species in the genus Buxus, although some cultivars are more susceptible than others. Foliar lesions will appear first, lesions on stems appear soon after. When the infection becomes severe, the plant will drop its leaves causing stress and eventual death.







University of Georgia
Plant Pathology
Extension and Outreach

Needle, tip or twig blights occur on arborvitae, cypress and juniper species turning tips of twigs and ends of needles brown or grey. Black, pimple-like fungal fruiting structures may develop on needle surfaces. These blights can be caused by fungi in the genera Phompsis, Diplodia or Coryneum.








Missouri Botanic Garden
Extension and Outreach

Pachysandra volutella blight, a leaf blight caused by Volutella pachysandricola, targets Japanese pachysandra. Infected stems will become dark brown and black and die. In very wet conditions orangish-pink fungal spores will colonize the surface of dead stems. Brown and tan spots will develop on pachysandra leaves and eventually spread over the entire leaf. Concentric line patterns may be visible.



Common Pests

University of Massachusetts
Agricultural extension

The boxwood psyllid is a common pest of ornamental boxwoods and is capable of infesting all species. They only produce one generation per year; insects overwinter laying orangish eggs in between bud scales. Nymphs hatch early in the season and a white, waxy substance thought to protect them can cover the plant and can be detrimental to plant health. The psyllid’s feeding will result in cupping of this year's foliage. White, powdery residue may be visible on young leaves and shoots.



Missouri Botanic Garden

Lacebug insects affect susceptible evergreen species such as rhododendrons, azaleas and Andromeda. Damage from previous seasons will appear as yellow stippling on the underside of leaves and mold-colonized honeydew on stems. If lacebugs were present the preceding season, they may become an issue again.







Maine.gov

Spider mites are common pests with a broad spectrum of targets; fruit trees, vines, berries, vegetables and ornamental shrubs; both needled and broad-leaved. Spidermites hatch out early in the growing season but remain active for a long time. Damage from spidermites appears as yellowed stippling on foliage occurring in large patches on trees



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SavATree offers a full range of tree, shrub and lawn services to the following locations:

Connecticut - Fairfield, Hartford, Litchfield, Middlesex, New Haven, New London, Tolland, Windham; Illinois - Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry County, Will; Maryland - Montgomery, Prince George's; New Hampshire - Rockingham; Massachusetts - Barnstable, Bristol, Essex, Middlesex, Norfolk, Plymouth, Rockingham, Suffolk, Worcester; Minnesota - St. Paul, White Bear Lake, Still Water, Woodbury, Mendota Heights, Sunfish Lake, Twin Cities; New Jersey - Bergen, Burlington, Essex, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union; New York - Bronx, Brooklyn, Columbia, Dutchess, Manhattan, Nassau, New York, Orange, Putnam, Queens, Rockland, Suffolk, Ulster, Westchester; Pennsylvania - Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Hampshire, Monroe, Montgomery, Northampton, Philadelphia, York; Virginia - Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William; Washington, D.C.; Wisconsin - St. Croix.