Does something just not look right about your tree this summer? Are the leaves starting to turn a little yellow? Are the veins of the leaves the only portion that is green? Are the leaves falling off prematurely? Are these signs happening on a isolated branch or the entire tree? If any or all of theses symptoms are present, you have high likelihood of iron chlorosis.

chlor1 chlor 2


Chlorosis is a very common nutritional disorder in many trees in our area of Wisconsin. Some of the most likely trees to have chlorosis in our area include silver maple, red maple, white oak, paper birch, and river birch.

Chlorosis is a condition where the tree is unable to efficiently produce chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is a vital leaf component which is responsible for energy absorption for trees. Trees without enough chlorophyll will not be able to grow and thrive.

Iron and manganese are the common micro-nutrient deficiencies that cause chlorosis in trees. These minerals are often not lacking in the soil, rather a condition exists where the tree’s root system is unable to obtain them in usable forms. Poor absorption of micronutrients is common in Wisconsin because of the high pH (alkalinity) of many soils (pH greater than 6.5).

There are several treatment methods available for us to treat chlorosis. Remember, it is important to determine what is the cause of the chlorosis first.


Soil injected fertilization with added micronutrients can help increase the amount of iron in the soil. Fertilization is best done in the spring or fall. 

Trunk Injection:

If iron is available in the soil but the pH is too high, trunk injections of iron can be done in one year or three year dosages. One year dosages of iron can be done anytime of year while the three year dosage needs to be done in fall.

Growth Regulator:

Trees treated with paclobutrazol, which is an active ingredient, show an increased production of fibrous roots. This helps the plants by expanding the area of soil the plants can pull water, minerals, and other resources from. This treatment is applied to soil and may be applied anytime that this ground is not frozen or saturated with water.

Soil Remediation:

The primary goal is to create a suitable soil environment that promotes fibrous root growth resulting in greater capacity to acquire water and nutrients from urban soils and a healthy more vigorous tree.

Compressed air is used to reduce soil compaction, increase oxygen in the soil, and incorporate organic matter into existing soils. This treatment increases the likelihood of improving the soil structure and establishing a beneficial for tree root growth.

chlor3 chlor4

written by:

Fred Hoppe
Board Certified Master Arborist WI-0556B
Hoppe Tree Service



Emerald Ash Borer – NOW! is the time to act

EAB corridor


We’ve been talking about Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) for quite a few years. EAB is reaching a saturation point with large swaths of ash trees dying, changing our tree canopy as it moves from yard to yard. Hoppe Tree Service is busy with EAB, removing dead/declining ash trees, treating healthy ash trees to prevent them from dying, and planting new trees to help establish the future tree canopy. If you have ash trees on your property, it is important to plan and prepare.


 Backgoround and life cycle

EAB life cycle


EAB is an exotic invasive insect that arrived in Wisconsin in 2008. The outbreak started slow in isolated communities, but now the EAB population is booming and we are seeing dead ash trees each and every day. All species of ash, no matter if they are young or old trees are susceptible to this invasive beetle. Female ash borers lay eggs on the bark of an ash tree. After hatching, the larvae bore into the cambium layers of the tree causing serious damage while not allowing the tree to pull water and nutrients up into the canopy of the tree. The larvae pupate into adults, then emerge from the tree and the process starts over.



EAB trunkinject

Hoppe Tree Service is a leader in treating ash trees. Hoppe Tree Service arborists generally recommend treating healthy ash trees, that can make a positive impact on your landscape and property. We use a trunk injection process to deliver insecticide into the cambium layer of the tree, destroying EAB insects as they feed on the tree. Treatments can be performed through a fairly large window of time from late spring through early fall. Treatment dosages last for 2 seasons. Preventative treatments to healthy ash trees are proven to be highly effective with a success rate of over 90%. Treatment success for damaged trees can be highly variable. Typically, if a tree is showing 25% canopy loss or less, EAB treatments usually can be successful and are usually worth attempting.


untreated vs treated




Ash tree infested with Emerald Ash Borer die fast. Within 1-2 years of infestation, a tree can be dead. Ash trees become brittle and break apart fast. It is important that ash trees that are close to buildings, infrastructure, or other targets are removed expeditiously before they break apart. Hoppe Tree Service arborists are well versed in removing trees, even with obstacles around them such as power lines, houses, etc. Hoppe Tree Service has the equipment and expertise to perform tree removal jobs safely and efficiently.

Where do the removed trees go? Hoppe Tree Service has an Urban Wood Lab division that recycles wood from our tree removals and makes lumber and natural edge wood slabs for furniture and other projects. The idea of The Urban Wood Lab came about due to Emerald Ash Borer and our feeling that we should try to find more uses for all of wood from ash trees that needed to come down. Click here for: The Urban Wood Lab website to learn more about what we do with all that wood.



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Trees that are removed due to EAB can dramatically alter the look and feel of a property. Hoppe Tree Service knows how important trees are to the world’s environment. Our arborists understand how to select new species for you property, as we look to provide the right tree for the right location. Our planting crews work during the spring and fall season. It’s important to plant new trees right. Our expert arborists understand proper methods for planting trees to ensure they remain as long lasting resources.






Professional Tree Inventories

Hoppe Tree Service can provide a tree inventory to identify your ash trees and to help manage all of your trees and shrubs. A Hoppe Tree Service ArborPlus inventory allows you to prioritize needs, and plan your tree care budget for the upcoming years. To make educated decisions it is essential to know how many trees you have, where they are located on your property, what species they are and most importantly what condition they are in. Whether you only have a few trees, or acres and acres of them, having a Hoppe Tree Service ArborPlus tree inventory is an excellent way to store all this information together in one, easy to use place. The information is dynamic, easily searchable, and can be used to gather and analyze all sorts of information.


Management strategies for all situations

Every property is different, and there is no one right answer for how to manage the Emerald Ash Borer. Inventory, treatment, removal, and replanting are all tools that Hoppe Tree Service uses, helping you make the right decisions for the trees in your yard or property. For larger properties with a high quantity of ash trees, a combination of all of these tools can make sense. Hoppe Tree Service is an expert in managing ash trees. For more information contact 414-257-2111 or go to our website at to request additional information.


Written by: August Hoppe
Certified Arborist WI-0477A
Hoppe Tree Service



Be on the lookout for these pests on your trees and shrubs this summer

This growing season our arborists have been seeing a lot of trees and shrubs. As we visit from property to property we start to see patterns in regards to insects and diseases that are affecting trees and shrubs. Every growing season is a little bit different, with fluctuations in moisture and temperature playing big roles in insect and disease outbreaks. Some problems we see are largely the usually suspects that we see time and time again, and others are relatively new pests that are attacking our trees and shrubs for the first time.

Here are some insects and diseases to be aware of that the Hoppe Tree Service arborists are seeing having an effect on  trees and shrubs in the Milwaukee area this year: 



Emerald ash borer- Emerald ash borer is now becoming widespread in most Milwaukee area. This invasive insect attacks all species of ash trees and causes damage by burrowing into the trunk and feeding on the cambium tissues that bring water and nutrients through the tree. Protection treatments are available and work best for healthy trees. Treatment consists of a trunk injection around the base of the tree. Treatment dosage lasts for 2 years. Trees experiencing more than 25-33% canopy loss are probably too far gone to treat. If you want to save an ash tree and haven’t treated yet, now is probably the time.




Apple scab- heavy rains during spring has caused one of the worst apple scab disease years in memory. If you are experiencing black spots and discoloration on leaves, along with early leaf drop on your crab trees it is most likely apple scab disease. Pruning the tree to increase air flow throughout the canopy, along with fungicide applications to the leaf surfaces are the most effective methods of minimizing apple scab. There are numerous varieties of crab apple trees and susceptibility to the apple scab fungus varies depending upon the variety.


boxwood leaf miner

Boxwood leaf miner- Boxwood bushes are valued for their dense evergreen foliage and ability to be low maintenance plants. Unfortunately this spring we are seeing more boxwood leaf miner than other before.  The leaf minor larvae feed between the upper and lower parts of the leaf, causing blisters on the underside of the leaf. The leaves infested by this pest become yellow and smaller than a normal leaf. When the plant is severely infested, it appears completely unhealthy.


Silver maple anthracnoseSilver maple anthracnose- We’ve gotten a lot of calls regarding black spots and legions on silver maple leafs. This problem is called anthracnose and even though it can look quite troubling it seldom causes real health issues for the tree. The wet weather this spring has caused this disease to be rampant on many silver maples. As with most fungal diseases, the most affected parts of the tree are the lower branches which are more shaded, with less air flow. Typically treatment is not needed. The best course of action is proper pruning to increase air flow through the tree, along with raking up of fallen leaves so fungal spores do not re-infect the tree.

Viburnum leaf beetle


Viburnum leaf beetle- This tenacious feeder of viburnum bushes is a relatively new insect pest in the Milwaukee area. This beetle can defoliate a viburnum bush rapidly. The larvae can skeletonize young leaves by June. This is the first sign of an infestation. Emerging adults continue feeding on viburnum. Plants that have been defoliated for two or three consecutive years may die. Highly susceptible viburnum species include Arrowwood Viburnum and high bush cranberry. Chemical treatments can control this pest and are best applied as soon as damage is noted.


Written by: August Hoppe
Certified Arborist WI-0477A
Hoppe Tree Service

Oh, Those Beautiful Crabapple Trees

Do you have a crabapple tree in your yard? Well, NOW is the time to take care of it. We receive many phone calls in the mid to late summer about crabapple trees. The conversations all seem to have the same start; “My crabapple tree looked so nice this spring and now it looks terrible. Why is that and what can be done to help it?” The tree has a fungal disease called scab. This is a potentially serious fungal disease of ornamental and fruit trees in the rose family. Trees that are most commonly and severely affected include crabapple, hawthorn, mountain ash, apple and pear. This disease is most severe in years with cool, wet weather, as the buds and blossoms are opening up. How is this spring adding up? It seems pretty cool and wet to me.

apple scab


You will first notice scab on the upper leaf surface, as well as on the fruits. These lesions can be small, the size of a pinhead or as large as one inch in diameter. When the disease is severe, lesions can merge and cover a large portion of the leaf or fruit surface, defoliation of the tree will then follow.
The good news is that this disease can be controlled and if your tree is taken care of the leaves will stay on and will even have fall color. While many trunk and soil treatments are in testing stages, none seem to be a viable option at this point. Some trunk injections look promising; however drilling small holes into the trunk of a tree on an annual basis is not a good practice. As with most chemical products today, they only will last 7-10 days and then not be effective anymore. Thus, a program of 3 foliar sprays in the spring and early summer is the best approach. The timing of these applications is of utmost importance or they will not work. The new chemistry of the products we use provides effective control of an infection that occurred up to 10 days ago, and then 7-10 days forward. To cover our cool, damp springs, the 3 applications work great, and will aid the tree in holding the leaves all summer and into the fall. Proper thinning is also a great help in the control of this disease. If your tree is overcrowded in the canopy, the leaves will remain damp and this will accelerate the scab disease. I would suggest waiting until after flowering for any pruning of your crabapple.

If you can remember back to last summer, and if your crabapple tree looked sickly, NOW is the time to take care of it. By the time you begin to see the lesions it will be too late for this season. With the proper care, your tree should provide beauty to your yard all summer and even in the fall.
If you have additional questions, would like help or information on tree care, please contact a professional. Certified arborists must follow stringent safety and performance standards, are required to have insurance, and have a trained and professional staff that is dedicated to ethics and quality in business practices.

Written by Bob Gluck
Certified Arborist WI-0116A
Hoppe Tree Service

Best to request your trees early!

We are very fortunate in Wisconsin that we have easy access to most things we want and need. We can go to the local store and buy bananas, avocado, and a pineapple, and make an awesome smoothie. Until recently it would be crazy to think we would always have access to these items considering none of them are grown near here. Have you ever gone to the store and expected an ingredient but it was all gone or temporarily unavailable? I will bet you have. When this happens we might become upset or disappointed that we don’t have everything we need to complete our meal now. We became accustomed to the availability and now we have to wait. What does any of this have to do with trees?

Trees are a crop too. They are planted, cultivated, grown, shipped, and sold. Like other crops their availability is subject to many factors including supply and demand, economic pressure, workforce availability, etc. Unlike other crops trees are not ready for market in one year’s time. Trees take many years to grow and be available for market. The result is then if ever there is a problem in the process of producing trees the ramifications can be felt for a long time. There have been several problems in the nursery business in the recent past that is now leading to a nationwide shortage of available plants. During the recession, the demand for trees slowed; so then did the nursery’s ability to put new plants in the ground. Producers of plant related items, such as bags, containers, baskets, also reduced their production. Unemployment and wage disparities created a skilled labor shortage. Some small businesses didn’t survive. Now that we are out of the recession we continue to deal with the problems created by it. But wait there is more. Emerald ash borer and other recent increased tree disease problems have created a huge demand for new trees while limiting the types of trees we can plant. Both municipalities and private land owners are having to replace trees at very high quantities. The sum of the problem is then that we have a greater demand than our local nurseries can supply. All is not lost however.  New plant production is ramping up, and the economy is still looking strong, but because trees take many years to grow, this will all take time.

Every year our staff receives a list from the nurseries with available pants (a grocery list of sorts). When we work with home and business owners on new tree plantings we reference the available trees that year and find a plant that fits your location, growing condition, and desired characteristics. This helps you get the right plant for your home or business. Unfortunately after the desired plant is identified the store might be out of supply because of the above mentioned problems. We have seen this now for several years.

The solution to out of stock plants is get your trees early. If you think you might want a tree replaced or planted in sometime this year let us get it ordered now. Spring offers the best selection and highest likelihood of availability. We don’t want to make compromises on the right tree for you. If you need pineapple for your recipe you don’t want to substitute a lemon (pun intended). Please take this into consideration and get your planting requests in early. If you wait too long the store might just be out of what you want.


Written by:
John Wayne Farber
Board Certified Master Arborist WI-0877A
Hoppe Tree Service

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