dracaena marginata tricolor leaf problem

tsquare425June 9, 2014

I have a nice 6 foot tall dracaena marginata tricolor in my living room. I've had it for well over a year in the same spot with no issues other than some mealy bugs. I have recently been observing white bands form on the top two heads of the tree. The bands have no color and the leaf is slightly deformed in the area. First there was one on one head, then two, then a second head got it. On the second head, the whole growing bud thing is deformed at the whitened area.
Does anyone know why these bands are forming? What can I do? They seem to be spreading!

Some additional info if it matters: Plant is in a bright day lit room and receives a little bit of direct sunlight during summer. soil pH: 6-6.5. Watered once a week. Room temp varies 65-85. Rest of the plant looks perfectly healthy.

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That's a lot of room temperature variance. Powdery mildew?

    Bookmark   June 9, 2014 at 12:24PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Looks like something is taking an occasional nibble while the leaves are still small, bunched together, causing a deformity at the same spot in each affected leaf. I'm not sure what does that, I see it on my plants occasionally but have assumed it happened while they were outside, something that took a few bites and flew away.

Otherwise, from what I can see in this pic, your plant is amazingly beautiful and happy-looking! Love those perky, colorful stripes!

    Bookmark   June 9, 2014 at 1:42PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Banding like that on the foliage of dracaena is most often associated with chill injury. Any chance the plant got too cold this past winter? Is it sited where it will get cold drafts?


    Bookmark   June 9, 2014 at 10:14PM
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I agree with purpleinopp!
Looks like something has damaged the leaves while they were still forming. Maybe even a chill, as Al suggests.
If you had mealy bugs before, maybe that's the reason?
It can be hard to pin these things down but overall your plant looks really nice.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 12:47AM
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grrr4200(z3 MI)

That happened to mine when i picked it up and it hit the ceiling, bend the new growth tip. All the leaves that came off of it for a time had that bruising to the leaves. Still waiting on the darn thing to grow taller so those leaves will naturally fall off!

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 12:55AM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

I'll link you to a commercial production guide for dracaenas. You might want to read the entire guide, but at least scroll down to where it lists physiological problems under chill injury.


Here is a link that might be useful: Dracaena info

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 7:38AM
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