Please advise problems with my plants

(Question)

Attached please find photo of my plants, do they have virus problem or do they need root nutrition?

Please advise, thanks,

 IMG2269
(Answer)

Thank you for contacting Toronto Master Gardeners.

From your picture it appears that the damage to your shrub is located mostly on one side and the top. It is the side away from the driveway so it is not from winter salt.

From the picture I can not tell what direction the damaged area is facing but I suspect that is the side of the shrub that is exposed to the sun in wintertime.

In the winter, evergreen needles/leaves continue photosynthesis. When the ground freezes the plant can longer absorb any more water so it has a finite amount of water available to the plant during the winter season. On sunny days the needles on the sunny side of the plant will start using up the available water as it photosynthesizes. At some point in the winter the plant may run out of accessible water and the needles will begin to die. Often the effects of this do not become apparent until the summer time when the needles turn brown.

To avoid this problem it is important to make sure the plants are well watered right before the ground freezes. Also if there is excessive light hitting the bush one can wrap it in burlap to block the sunlight from hitting the leaves.

It is hard to say if you will get regrowth on your branches from the photograph. If there is still any signs of life in those branches they may green up again though that will take some patience and it may be sparse new growth.

I have attached some sites below for you to read further on this problem.

Good luck and I hope this helps.

https://www.ontario.ca/environment-and-energy/winter-browning

https://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/agdex4144