What to do with my Japanese maple tree..?


Hi there, I live in Toronto, ON and have a Japanese maple tree that was always healthy for approx. 6 years. This was up until last winter when a winter storm knocked some of the small branches off and I think caused the tree to sustain some trauma. The following spring we unfortunately have to transport the tree to another area of the garden. It successfully leafed out last Spring, but not at the same rate it had previous years. The leaves were curled and looked dry. I did my best to nurture and protect it, covered it this past winter to prevent further damage to the roots, etc. But you will see what it looks like now.. No sign of leaves yet and the green maple beside it is flourishing at this time. Both areas that the Japanese maple has been planted is partial sun/shade, and I just don’t know what to do to help it. I think it’s still alive, but I cant be entirely sure it’s alive. Any advise or suggestions that you can offer to help save my beautiful tree would be much appreciated! Thanks in advance!


Thank you for contacting the Toronto Master Gardeners with your concern about your Japanese Maple tree.

If this is a current picture taken this week, and your tree has not broken any buds as of yet, that is not a good sign. In the unlikely event that it is just really late, and does leaf out soon, then I would provide it a feeding of a balances tree shrub fertilizer. Also I would be sure the ground is moist, but not too over water at this time being that it has no leaves yet.

Unfortunately not much else I can suggest at this stage.

For future reference it is a challenge to transplant a tree that is already stressed (and Japanese Maples can be finicky) . Then we had a rather harsh winter which further reduced the odds for a stressed transplant.