apple serviceberry trees

(Question)

I have a small south facing garden in Toronto just newly landscaped with three of these saplings. they did well for about a week or so with blooms but in last few days lost all flowers and leaves are drooping. I have watered every day. there is mulch and I see no sign of insects….what is the problem?

(Answer)

The lovely Apple Serviceberry is a hybrid between Amelanchier Canadensis and A. laevis, and is considered to be superior to either species because of its adaptability to a wide range of soils and its drought tolerance.  It a great garden tree with its spectacular blossoms and beautiful fall colour.  The Serviceberry trees in my neighbourhood had a disappointingly short blooming time this spring, and the young leaves have been slow to emerge and perhaps this is what you are observing.

As your trees are newly planted, though, they may be suffering from what is called “transplant shock”, one of the symptoms of which is leaves that appear wilting.  When a young tree is removed from the nursery, it can lose as much as 90% of its root system, especially its essential feeder roots.  When a tree is transplanted, it takes time for a new root system to establish itself and for the balance between the roots and the leaves of the tree to be re-established, in other words, the diminished root system cannot supply sufficient nutrients to the leaves. Transplant shock is fairly common and is highly stressful to trees, making them more vulnerable to drought, insect pests and diseases.  The Apple Serviceberry is known to be slow to recover from transplanting, so you should continue with the care you have been giving your young trees, and allow them time to adapt.   Here is a link to a very good description of transplant shock and the care and maintenance of young trees:  https://www.mortonarb.org/trees-plants/tree-and-plant-advice/horticulture-care/caring-new-transplants