The Grateful Dead Birch tree

Even with all the recent rain, the drought is still having a big impact in the Sacramento and so many Birch trees are dying off with drought being the leading cause. (Mar. 14, 2017)

It’s kind of hard to think about the drought with all the rain we've been getting, but the drought is still effecting many home owners in Sacramento County.

A growing number of Birch trees are dying off and drought is the leading cause. Rancho Cordova home owner "Johnny B" lost a 25-year-old Birch in his front yard last year.

"Slowly over the past 3 years it started dying. I just couldn’t bring myself to cut it down because I liked it shape." said Johnny B.

The Grateful Dead fan spray painted his dead tree silver and decorated it to match other Grateful Dead themed ornaments in his lawn.

"I wanted to give it a new life." said Johnny B.

Turns out birch trees in Sacramento are "In need of a miracle". Kuldeep Sing is a tree expert  with the Sacramento tree foundation and at one point the foundation gave home owners birch trees for free, but not anymore.

"Sacramento is a dry place and they require lots of water," said Sing.

Birch trees are not native to California. During the drought, many became susceptible to bugs and disease.

"Stress from the drought weekend the trees then the beetles follow and make holes through the bark." said Sing.

The foundation has seen water thirsty birch trees all over Sacramento dying in the past years.

Redwood trees are also dying off due to drought, recent rains may help the birch and redwood, but if they are to make it through the summer don't water your trees at the trunk. Soak the outer roots.

"The drip line is at the end of the branches. You should water 5 feet out from the trunk or further." said Sing.

Drought intolerant trees require a sort of “Box of Rain". Trees need a good watering twice a month. Johnny B lost his birch tree, but if you can handle one more grateful dead reference..."Every silver lining has a touch of grey." "The good news is, I don't have to water my dead tree." he said.

Sacramento tree foundation has a list of over 80 tree that they suggest you plant in your back yard. You can find that list on their website sactree.com

Copyright 2017 KXTV


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