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Hydrangea not looking healthy!

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Hydrangea not looking healthy!

Postby Bug » Jun 28, 2013 10:14 pm

IMG_5900.jpg
Would anyone know what could be wrong with my hydrangea bush? The pic from up above shows the difference between two. The one on the left is lush, full and beginning to bud, while the one on the right looks sick! I hope the pic of the close-up shows enough to identify the problem. Thanks for your help! I love hydrangeas and it saddens me to know I won't be seeing any from this one bush this year.
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Re: Hydrangea not looking healthy!

Postby Ian66 » Jun 28, 2013 11:15 pm

Was it newly planted last year?......if so, the plant had a hard time getting established by the look of the dead stems.....I would cut back the dead canes give it water and hope for the best......may take another season to catch up to the other one. Considering the health that it is in, if the plant does not show more growth by the end of the season, it will probably not make it through the winter.....fertilizing will not help much when they are stuggling and may make it worse (salts in the fertilizer interfere with new root growth)
if it was my garden, I would replace it with a new hydrangea to match the one you have

Ian
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Re: Hydrangea not looking healthy!

Postby Katherine » Jun 29, 2013 10:58 am

Were there spots on the leaves down low early in the season? That looks a bit like either an Armillaria root rot or a Cercospora leaf wilt (if there were spots) to me. I cant see detail in the photo tho, so could be wrong. I wouldnt replant Hydrangea at that spot, but rather take the diseased shrub out, dont compost it and try a resistant variety, even something else, if you can find one. Hydrangeas are really easy to root by airlayering so you can easily propigate the other shrub. They also transplant easily in the fall or spring.
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Re: Hydrangea not looking healthy!

Postby Bug » Jun 29, 2013 3:32 pm

Both of the hydrangeas I purchase in June 2008, here is a pic of how the suffering one looked a year ago, very healthy:

I took a closer look at the leaves and there is browning around some edges and there are quite a few spider webs. But, is that just the browning from the leaves dying and the webs from there being so many dead twigs to web around? I'm not sure what to do. I'd hate to have to get rid of it.
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Re: Hydrangea not looking healthy!

Postby Katherine » Jun 29, 2013 3:41 pm

That could be spidermites then. Like Ian prune it right back. Is there a chance you haven't watered it enough? In dry soil? Hydrangea are thirsty plants.
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Re: Hydrangea not looking healthy!

Postby Jersm » Jun 29, 2013 8:14 pm

okay so from what i can see from the pictures, common knowledge and my own experimentation, I will make my assumption.

1. the fact that the plant is growing means its trying and you shouldn't take it out or get rid of it.

2. I first saw the dried dead leafs still on the plant and some starting to get "droopy". From my experience from transplanting and cloning, almost all plants will sacrifice leafs to survive for a handfull of reasons.

3. Im looking at the ground around the plant and i see moss. the fact that moss is growing tells me this earth doesn't dry out very often and is very moist possibly compact. also it tends to mean this is a shaded area for most of the day if not always.

4. the "sick" plant seems to be doing okay on the sunny side of it and not so good on the part that shaded by the moss and deck. and the other plant thats a little further seems to e doing great.


So in my opinion the ground is over saturated with water mostly under the deck. Since there has been a huge amount of rain lately (Here anyway) i am assuming the earth hasn't had time to dry out (thus the moss) and the water around the plant closest to the fence is starting to get stagnant.

If the water doesn't dry off for too long the plants roots will quickly suck up the oxygen from the stag water and start to suffocate. (transplants do the opposit and sacrifice leafs to gain the water and nutrients due to cut roots lower production)

The symptoms of suffocation is that the plants roots cant support new growth or if it starts to rain suddenly it must sacrifice leafs to reduce its energyintake due to suffocating roots.

The plant seems to be even sacrificing healthy leafs to support itself and survive and also to match the low efficiency of suffocated roots.


if anything ide recommend moving it ahead away from the deck like the other one for next year maye the one after.
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Re: Hydrangea not looking healthy!

Postby Ian66 » Jun 29, 2013 9:10 pm

Well in my opinion, it isn't an issue with water (since the hydrangea and other plants next to it are fine).....the plant has an issue with the roots (not established yet) or you have a "charlie brown" shrub that will never live to its potential.....my suggestion to replace it was to instantly improve the look of your garden.
Why don't you lift this plant and put it in another location and see if it will recover....
Also, Cercospora or other leaf spots and even browning around the edges will not really harm your plant, just makes it look unsightly.....there is always going to be good and bad years for disease and insects attacking your plants....its only nature taking its course...
If you have spider mites (and they are very hard to see), then use garden sulpher mixed in water which is a good miticide.....
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Re: Hydrangea not looking healthy!

Postby Ian66 » Jun 29, 2013 10:46 pm

You also have to consider that your hydrangea will not bloom this year and unless it puts out substancial new growth this summer, it will not bloom next year (since it sets its flower buds in July for next year's blooming)
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Re: Hydrangea not looking healthy!

Postby Katherine » Jun 30, 2013 12:49 pm

You might be right about the Charlie Brown shrub, Ian.

I cant diagnose a disease unless I have a lot of real symptomology. About the watering, i have very sandy silty soil, which compacts badly and other plants can look fine when my hydrangeas are suffering, so it was just a suggestion.

Kat
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Re: Hydrangea not looking healthy!

Postby Bug » Jun 30, 2013 2:53 pm

I thank you all very much for your insights! I believe the plant is receiving sufficient light & moisture since it has produced fabulous flowers for the past 2 years as you can see from the pic I attached later. I will cut it back and hope for the best for next year.
~Bug
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