Gardenia Shrub withering away - Help

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  #1  
Old 06-09-07, 06:32 AM
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Unhappy Gardenia Shrub withering away - Help

I have four gardenia bushes that I planted a year or so ago. They were growing quite well,and now in the past 2-3 months they look very thin. Some leaves have a black residue on it and the leaves are now turning brown (looks burnt) at the tips. Is this a watering issue? I water them regularly... 3x/week.

Please help!
KDC
 
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  #2  
Old 06-09-07, 06:45 AM
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The black residue is likely sooty mold which causes black layers of fungus on surface of leaves. It grows on white fly excrement. You need to control for white flies. Browning is likely due to overwatering. Soil should remain moist and not dry out. Stick finger in soil. If soil feels moist, do not water.

Gardenias are fussy, so you need lots of info: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/BODY_MG336
 
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Old 06-09-07, 07:22 AM
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Thanks Twelve.
I noticed that they do have the black mold and after looking at that site I believe it is scales. From what i read on scales it doesn help to have ants around as well and right now there is a good sized ant population running around in the garden. I will try to control that and any pests first and then treat scales with the horticulture oil ... sound good?

Thanks,
KDC
 
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Old 06-09-07, 07:48 AM
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Horticultural oil spray is just what you need for scales. Gardenias will likely not look good for a couple of seasons. Here is an article that gives other tips for scales and ants: http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7408.html

Oil spray is great for killing overwintering insect eggs. It smothers them and they can't hatch out in the spring. Apply in late fall.
 
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Old 06-09-07, 08:43 AM
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Thanks T.
That is a great link and similar to some of what I researched.
Thanks for all the help. I will control the pests and do the oil in the fall as you mentioned. One of those "learn something new everyday" situations for me. Gardening is not my strongest area for sure. Appreciate the advice/help.

KDC
 
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Old 06-09-07, 09:34 AM
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Greet each planting in your landscape as a new friend. Learn all you can about it and its needs. Just keep it happy like you do your friends, and you will be just fine. We aren't born with green thumbs. We just have to read and study and experiment, unless we grew up with parents or relatives who gardened and we learned from them.
 
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