Loofah leaves turning (growing?) WHITE

cosmic_triggerJuly 21, 2012

Hey Folks,

I have some loofah plants which I have sprouted from seed. I live in Ohio... and I realize I'm very late getting these started.

I cant figure out why the leaves are white. I have included a pic. The only thing I can find information on is "white powdery mildew". I do not believe this is the cause of the discoloration. As best as I can tell the mildew starts in small circles and builds up to a powdery substance. With my plants.. the leaves seem to just grow white. Can anybody tell me what this is and what I might do to correct it? If you need more information I can provide it to you. THANKS

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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

Normal coloration.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 8:12PM
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IAmSupernova(SE Texas 9A)

I can't solve your problem but I can get a couple of the basic questions outta the way.

Where do you live, do you use fertilizer, if so what kind and how often? Is this outdoors? What kinda sun is it getting?

Someone who knows what they're talking about (I'm just a first year gardener but I do a lot of lurking) probably going to ask more.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 8:14PM
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Cleveland, OH
No fertilizer yet-- just recently sprouted
6-8 hours of direct sun

Maybe the picture resolution is not clear but this is most definitely not the normal coloration. I have grown these before and they were green. These leaves are very white.
Any input?

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 8:22PM
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At the beginning of the season, I got a loofa plant from a friend and transplanted it into my garden. Immediately some bug ate the central shoot. The plant turned whitish like your photo. It sat like that for about 10 days, not doing much. The temps were a little cool. On day 11, it started to grow and all the new growth was normal green. The plant was almost 50 feet long before I hacked it back two days ago as it was trying to strangle other plants. It has three loofahs on it - which have been there most of the summer. None of the other female flowers every produced, just died. Two days after hacking it back, two of the female flowers are blooming and the the fruit is swelling.

Not an expert, but I wonder if Loofahs like adversity?


    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 7:27PM
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Wow! That's huge! I'm surprised you only got 3 loofahs out of that monster. Maybe you are right.. I know down in FL the plant covered a 5ft trellis and produced 10 fruits. I do believe the newer leaves are showing less discoloration. Hopefully they will continue to grow nice and green... Not that there is any chance of me harvesting mature fruit starting so late in the season. I planted them more to satisfy my garden withdrawal as I just moved away from my beautiful FL garden to OH.

Just remember.. If you are growing for scrubbers make sure you don't let them completely dry out as you would certain decorative gourds. Otherwise the scrubber will have a brown color and will not be as effective. But not too early either... at least mine ended up having that issue when I just left them to dry.

I appreciate all the responses. Thanks!

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 9:48PM
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