Can my saucer magnolia tree be saved?


I purchased a saucer magnolia tree and planted it in early May. At the time of planting there were no leaves or flowers visible but it did have buds. I planted using a blend of 50% original soil which is clay and Coast of Maine penobscot compost blend. The tree started leafing out soon after planting but most of the leaves have withered and died except for one branch but I am noticing some of these are also turning brown along the edges. At the suggestion of the place of purchase I cut back the branches and did notice there was still life in them. This week I have noticed powdery mildew on some leaves and branches and a canker on the bark. I am watering the tree weekly using drip hose method for about 30 minutes each time. Is there any hope to save this tree?


Lynne Holland, Community Education Assistant (Home Horticulture)

If there is a gall on the tree that you just bought you should contact the nursery.  
Also, test just how much water you are giving it as it sounds like it might be sitting in water due to the high clay soil and over amended soil in the planting hole. Since over watering and underwatering can sometimes look the same, do a test of how much water is actually coming out of the hose in ten minutes, so you know what your watering regime has actually deposited in the ground.