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Rowan tree dropping leaves now?

Hello - my first post, I hope someone can help. We moved into our house nearly two years ago. It has a beautiful tree, which I think is a rowan (though very happy to be corrected!), in the garden. Last year it was stunning; this spring it has been dropping leaves at an incredible rate. They are yellowy brown with marks on. There is also new leaf growth and blossom, so I'm hoping it's nothing deadly, but I'm a very novice gardener and don't know whether it might be something that can be treated. 

We have had a lot of building work done and a building placed near the tree, so part of me wonders if a large root has been damaged. Could that cause this reaction?

Thanks for any help.


  • sarahs999sarahs999 Posts: 15


  • sarahs999sarahs999 Posts: 15


  • chickychicky SurreyPosts: 10,161

    Hi Sarah - doesn't look like a rowan to me.

    Did the tree keep its leaves over winter?  If it did, then this is probably just the normal spring process where an evergreen sheds last years leaves to make room for the new ones.

    The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page  - St Augustine
  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,397

    might be a cotoneaster

  • sarahs999sarahs999 Posts: 15

    Thank you both. I don't remember it losing its leaves at all before, but then I wasn't paying a huge amount of attention as we were having a lot of building work done and the back garden was closed off. I had a look at cotoneasters online and they don't look quite the same. ANy other ideas? I used the Woodland Trust tree ID online thing and it's that that made me think it was a rowan. But looking at the leaf shape I agree that it's not. 

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,397

    If you do a close (ish) shot showing the leaves and their arrangement on a twig we might get closer. and one of the trunk. Whatever it is you might expect flowers, or at least buds now. Has it got any?

  • sarahs999sarahs999 Posts: 15

    Thanks nutcutlet. Here are some pics I just took showing twig, bark and the blossom that's on it now.imageimageimage

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,397

    It's a cotoneaster but I couldn't say which one. The tree-like evergreen species are very good at having a leaf drop about now. Those new leaves and flower buds look fine.

    Have a look at Cotoneaster lacteus and C. frigidus 'Cornubia'

  • sarahs999sarahs999 Posts: 15

    Thank you so much. I didn't realise they could grow into full trees - had thought cotoneaster was shrub. So I should just rake up the leaves and not worry about it? I just checked back on a year's worth of photos to see if it looked similar last year; there were a few yellow leaves but nothing like this year. But I guess that's just a climate/growth thing.

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,397

    The new stuff looks OK, that's the important bit. There are loads of species of cotoneaster from ground huggers to small(ish) trees

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