4 Possible Reasons for Autumn Blaze Maple Leaves Turning Brown

Autumn Blaze Maple trees are famous for their beautiful foliage and fast-growing nature. Their vibrant green leaves easily attract any gardener. But it is really a matter of concern when your autumn blaze maple leaves turn brown suddenly. There are several reasons why your maple tree leaves may turn brown; among them improper watering, excess sunlight, lack of fertilizer, pest infestation, and natural reasons.  

But you are not alone. Many gardeners face this problem with maple trees. And the good news is that the problem is completely fixable. In this article, I will tell you about that in detail.  So stay with me and keep scrolling.



Improper Watering  6-7 gallons of water is recommended for a young tree.
Excess Sunlight  6 hours of sunlight with partial shade is a must.
Lack of Fertilizer  A npk (10-5-5) can be a good choice.
Pests Infestation  Apply chemical treatment for severe infection.

4 Proven Fixes For Autumn Blaze Maple Tree Browning

1. Improper Watering

If you are not in the habit of watering your tree regularly, this could be the main cause of the browning of your autumn blaze maple tree. When a maple tree does not get enough water, the plant’s photosynthesis process stops. You must know that this process takes place in the leaves of plants. As a result, the leaf cells die and the leaves turn brown within a few days.

By observing a few symptoms, you can easily understand whether the problem of your autumn blaze maple tree is due to watering. When the plant lacks water, the green leaves plant start to turn pale. Later the leaves become shriveled and turn brown. In the last step, the brown leaves of your tree fall off.

Control Measure

If you are sure that your autumn blaze maple tree’s problem is due to improper watering, then the straightforward solution is to apply enough water to the tree. But for the solution, you need to know about the water requirement of the maple tree. If your plant is very young, you will need to apply a lot of water to establish it. A young maple tree typically needs 6-7 gallons of water per week in the first year. Care should be taken to keep the root zone of the tree moist.

However, once established, maple trees are drought-tolerant and do not require much water. Applying water once a week is enough.  Also, established maple trees thrive on 1-1.5 inches of rainfall.

2. Excess Sunlight

Excessive sunlight is one of the causes of the browning of the leaves of the autumn blaze maple tree. If your tree is in a location where it receives direct sunlight and heats all the time, your plant’s leaves may turn brown within a few days.

Excessive sunlight destroys the chlorophyll in the leaves of the tree. In addition, harmful UV rays from sunlight destroy plant tissues. As a result, the photophosphorylation process of the plant is disrupted. Besides, in excess of heat, the leaves of the tree become dehydrated, which changes the normal color of the leaves.

Your maple tree will grow very quickly with access to sunlight. Although this may sound positive, it is very harmful to plants.  Because the tree grows before all its branches are fully mature. As a result, the tree becomes extremely weak and collapses at the slightest blow.

Control Measure

To protect your autumn blaze maple tree from excess sunlight, you must use shade cloth. Shade cloth is a must for young plants as young plants are more susceptible to excess light and heat. However, shade cloth cannot always be used. Maple trees need a minimum of six hours of direct sunlight a day. So morning sun must also be ensured for the tree along with the shade.

Immediate measures should be taken for plants already damaged by excess sunlight.  First of all, shade should be provided for the plants. After that, deep watering should be done for a few days so that the plant’s soil remains moist. You can also apply mulch to increase the water-holding capacity of the plant’s root zone.

Besides, if any part of the tree is affected so that it is impossible to fix it, then it should be removed by pruning. Care should be taken not to cut healthy branches.

3. Lack of Fertilizer

Chlorosis is one of the causes of maple leaf browning caused by nitrogen or iron. If your plant doesn’t get enough nitrogen and iron, its leaves start to turn yellow. However, if additional fertilizers are not applied, the leaves later turn brown and fall off.

Another major cause of maple leaf browning is magnesium deficiency. Magnesium creates chlorophyll in plants. When you don’t provide plants with enough magnesium, it stops producing chlorophyll. Very naturally the leaves of plants cannot turn green and brown due to a lack of chlorophyll.

Control Measure

First, you need to measure the pH of your garden soil. You can easily do this with a pH meter. If the pH range is too high, it is certain that the soil is deficient in iron and magnesium. If the soil test confirms that your soil is deficient in iron and magnesium, you must apply chelated iron and magnesium to the soil around the root zone of the tree. In this case, I always use chelated minerals because they are more easily absorbed than inorganic minerals.

For nitrogen deficiency, you must apply nitrogen-rich fertilizer additionally to the plant. In this case, I would suggest you use an NPK (10-5-5). But the best option to fill nitrogen deficiency is to use organic compost. In addition to fertilizing, you must water the plants adequately and ensure that excess water is drained.

4. Pests Infestation

Scales and Japanese beetles are both responsible for the leaf browning of maple trees.  Scale sap-sucking insects appear as raised bumps on the bark of plants. They cause brown foliage and permanent droop.

Japanese beetles eat the leaves of maple trees and are responsible for wilting. They feed whole leaves and leave leaf skeletons, by which you can easily confirm their presence.

Control Measure

There are two ways you can treat your maple tree bug infestation. One is a home remedy and the other is a chemical treatment. If the infection is in the initial stage, then you can spray two spoons of liquid soap and one spoon of detergent in one liter of water in the morning for two weeks. Besides, washing the injured parts of the plant with permanganate solution gives good results.

However, if the infection is severe, chemical treatment is a must. In this case, I would suggest you spray a good quality pesticide. But before spraying, you must follow the manufacturer’s instructions written on the packet.

Autumn Blaze Maple Leaves Browning For Natural Issue

Every year during the fall season, the leaves of your maple tree may turn brown. And believe me, it is completely natural. Shortly before the onset of winter, when the weather starts to cool and the days get shorter, maple trees start preparing for winter by shedding old leaves. During this time, there is a change in the internal body mechanism of the plant. Plants break down chlorophyll and reveal other pigments.

As a result, the leaves first turn yellow, then light red, orange, and finally brown. Old leaves fall off soon after turning brown. This is a very normal part of your tree’s annual cycle and is not a cause for concern.

Preventive Steps of  Autumn Blaze Maple Tree Leaves From Turning Brown

Sure, here are the key points for preventive steps for Autumn Blaze Maple Leaves Turning Brown:

  • Water the tree adequately to prevent under or over-watering, which can stress the tree and cause its leaves to turn brown.
  • Improve soil quality by adding organic matter to retain moisture, improve soil structure, and promote beneficial microbial activity.
  • Minimize stressors such as air pollution, soil compaction, or excessive heat by planting the tree in a suitable location with good drainage and adequate sunlight.
  • Regularly inspect the tree for signs of disease or pest problems and address any issues promptly by consulting a professional arborist.
  • Provide optimal growing conditions by maintaining a slightly acidic to neutral soil pH, moderate fertility, and applying a slow-release fertilizer in the spring.

By following these key points, you can help your Autumn Blaze Maple tree stay healthy and prevent its leaves from turning brown. Remember to seek professional advice if you notice any signs of distress or have any concerns about the health of your tree.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Is it normal for Autumn Blaze Maple leaves to turn brown in the fall?

Ans: Yes, it is normal for Autumn Blaze Maple leaves to go through a transitional phase where they appear brown or bronze before turning red, orange, and yellow in the fall. This is a natural part of the tree’s annual cycle and is not cause for concern.

Q: What can cause Autumn Blaze Maple leaves to turn brown other than normal seasonal change?

Ans: Other possible causes of brown leaves on Autumn Blaze Maple trees include water stress, disease or pest infestation, and environmental stress. These issues can affect the tree’s health and should be addressed to ensure its long-term viability.

Q: Can a maple tree recover from leaf scorch?

Ans: Actually, there is no cure for leaf scorch disease. Maple leaves do not regain their green color when this problem occurs.  Because leaf scorch kills the cells in the leaves by dehydrating them.

Q: What does a dying maple tree look like?

Ans: A dying maple tree is easily identified. Dying maple leaves will become discolored, the plant will lose freshness, the leaves will first turn yellow and then brown, and the branches will become weak and break at the slightest impact. Dying maple trees can also be identified by additional insect attacks and disease symptoms.

Q: Do Autumn Blaze maples need a lot of water?

Ans: Autumn blaze maple trees have two phases of water requirement. One is in the young stage i.e. in the first one to one and a half years and the other after maturity. Young blaze maple trees require copious amounts of water to keep the root zone moist. Mature blaze maple trees, on the other hand, can survive on 1-1.5 mm of rainfall per week.

Final Words

Autumn blaze maple leaf browning can be a completely natural cause, or it can be a symptom of a more serious problem.  So you have to be sure of the underlying cause at the outset. If it is due to natural causes then there is no reason to worry.

But if it is due to improper watering, excess heat, or fertilizer issue then you must be a bit careful. You can fix your autumn blaze maple tree by following some very simple processes which you already know in this article. Hope your autumn blaze maple leaves turning browning problem will be resolved soon. Happy Gardening and Keep Smiling.

James Rivenburg
James Rivenburg
James Rivenburg

James Rivenburg is the founder of plantandpest.com, a passionate gardener with valuable experience and knowledge gained through trial and error. The website has a large community of followers who trust his tips and techniques and have succeeded with his advice. He is always Committed to helping others create a beautiful and healthy garden.

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