Iron is an important nutrient needed for chlorophyll production. Many trees are unable to absorb the iron that they need due to high ph levels in the soil. We can inject iron directly into the root zone. With more available iron, the effects of iron chlorosis can be reduced or eliminated.
What is iron chlorosis and what causes it?
Iron chlorosis is caused by the trees inability to obtain enough iron from the soil. This occurs when there is either not enough iron in the soil, or the iron in the soil is unavailable. Iron becomes unavailable when the soil pH level is high, which causes the iron to become insoluble and difficult for many plants to absorb. Iron is an important nutrient needed for chlorophyll production. A symptom of iron chlorosis is smaller, yellow leaves with dark green veins, which means there is a decrease in chlorophyll. With severe chlorosis, the leaves can turn from white to brown and there can be some twig dieback.
The first leaves on the tree may appear normal size with some yellowing, however the later leaves will be smaller and much more yellow. Also, this can occur on only one branch, half of the tree, or the entire tree. If iron chlorosis tends to be a recurring problem it could lead to the death of the tree.
In Utah, silver maple, red maple, red oak, river birch, tuliptree, sweetgum, flowering pear, and flowering plum are trees that commonly have problems with iron chlorosis, but it is not limited to these trees.
One thing to note is that there are other causes of yellowing such as watering problems, herbicide damage, and other mineral deficiencies. Symptoms of manganese and iron deficiencies are very similar. Manganese chlorosis is common in red maple and red maple hybrids.