Maple leaves drop early due to wet spring

Posted Aug. 22, 2011, at 9:33 a.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — An official with the Maine Forest Service said a wet spring is the reason maple leaves are falling from trees across the state weeks earlier than usual.

The Forest Service’s Bill Ostrofsky said calls from concerned homeowners about the unusually early loss of leaves have been pouring in.

Ostrofsky said the wet weather this spring provided ideal conditions for two particular types of fungi to flourish. The variety of tree most affected is Norway maple.

Dave Struble of the Forest Health and Monitoring Division told the Portland Press Herald a year or two of the infections will have little effect on the trees. But if the infections continue over several years the trees can be weakened.