How to Know If a Cypress Is Dead

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Several pests, including Cypress Weevil and Bagworms can cause fatal damage to Cypress trees.
Several pests, including Cypress Weevil and Bagworms can cause fatal damage to Cypress trees. (Image: Photos.com/Photos.com/Getty Images)

A Cypress is any tree or shrub that belongs to the Cupressaceae and includes the Chinese Swamp Cypress, Fujian Cypress, Siberian Cypress and African Cypress. The trees grow to magnificent heights but can be plagued by several problems, including cankers, root rot and cercospora needle blight, which is a fungal infection. Age also has a factor on the tree’s health. Several signals indicate that your Cypress tree is dead.

Examine the Cypress tree’s bark. If the bark has a brittle texture and is falling off in large chunks, the Cypress tree might be dead. The bark of a dead Cypress tree may also be spongy to the touch.

Look at the tree’s limbs. A tree that is dying or dead will have limbs that are breaking off at points or have fallen off all together.

Break off one of the branches at the bottom of the tree. A tree that is healthy and alive has branches that bend and are more difficult to break off. The branches of a dead Cypress tree snap off easily when broken.

Examine the needles of the Cypress Tree. A Cypress tree that is dead has needles that are brown and fall off during its prime when the needles should be green and lush. A tree that has brown needles all year long is dead and should be removed.

Examine the tree trunk for large cracks. Many times a Cypress tree that is left unattended and has died begins to form cracks, some that are deep enough that the tree falls on its own. If there is a large crack in the tree it is dead and must be removed immediately to prevent potential damage or injury.

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