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We have a thick area of cedars behind a house we are building. When the builder cleared the area the inner cedars, now in front are brown about 2/3 of the way down.

My question is this: Will the brown regrow or green up?

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    Sounds like dieback. Do you have a picture of how much disturbance was done to the roots of the dying trees? – Graham Chiu Jan 13 '17 at 1:02
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No, they won't turn green again, though its not impossible for new growth to appear at the tips of the brown areas. Sounds like the roots were compromised by the adjacent construction work, so if you don't like looking at trees that have large, dead brown areas, take them out. If it is root damage, you might find they die completely over time, or may continue to grow at the top, but hard to say without a photograph, especially as its not clear whether you're saying they're brown from the bottom up or top down for two thirds, or brown in the middle two thirds. Also hard to say whether those brown areas will show new growth at the tips for the same reason (no photos), but if it is root damage, its unlikely.

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Were the cedars brown to start or did they turn brown? If they were brown to start then it sounds like a light issue not a construction issue. Either way they will probably not get get a lot of new bottom growth. However they may regain some green if it was a light issue. A construction issue would only get worse in time but, most construction damage may not show up until after the first or even third year. They would have had to really tear things up to show such damage right away and that should be apparent.

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