Why are the leaves falling off??

ednsarJune 24, 2007

Hi, I don't know what this plant is but it seems to be suffering and we don't really know what's wrong.

Here's what the plant looks like

Here's a closeup of a leaf to help you out...

But recently, the plant's started losing its leaves... they turn yellow and fall off. It's not just one or two, I've picked about seven up in the last minute or two.

We did repot it when we first bought it, as we always do with plants we buy and so it's got plenty of room.

The only thing that the little care instructions say is to water regularly and it prefers much light but no direct sunlight so that's what we've been giving it.

Here's a demonstration of what the leaves look like when they fall off...

Not the usual lovely dark green colour they usually are. Any ideas??

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Hi Ed. I believe your plant is an Aralia..
I notice it's not placed near a window..right? Though Aralia doesn't need direct sun, it should, at a minimum, receive bright light..Looks like it's in a dark corner..
You say the care instructions state to water regularly..ppl interpret watering instructions differently..Plus, most labels are incorrect..Soil should dry out between waterings..stick a finger in soil..about 3-4" deep..if your finger comes out dry, it's time for a drink, but if it comes out moist or muddy, do not water..Wait a few days and recheck.Repeat test.

You mentioned repotting..what size pot was it in, and which size did you repot to? It's customary to go up 1-2 sizes.

Last, check for insects..I'm not saying your plant has this problem, but it never hurts to inspect a newly purchased plant. Spider mites are most common on Aralias.

I'm guessing it's receiving inadequate light and soil is too wet. Aralias are fussy..Changing locations, repotting, it's bound to lose some leaves, but not nearly as many as you mentioned.. Is it possible to set plant outside? If so, place in a shady spot then work up to obstructed bright..Toni

    Bookmark   June 24, 2007 at 5:48PM
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Thanks for the info, I forgot to mention, we have recently moved it from a quite bright spot because it was getting direct sunlight so I actually moved it to that pictured spot yesterday when the picture was taken in the hope that it'll settle down there.

INSECTS - I had noticed a couple of tiny tiny white animals on the leaves but they all seemed dead - I've never seen one move anyway, how would I treat this if that's the case?

REPLANT OUTSIDE - We don't have a garden so planting outside would be a bit of a problem really.

POTS - When we bought it about 3 months ago, it was in a pot about 9 inches (23cm) diameter and it's now in a pot 12 inches (30cm).

Thanks for the advice

    Bookmark   June 25, 2007 at 12:31PM
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Ed, were the leaves dropping when placed in brighter light? Or did they start falling after moving?

Tiny white bugs..hmm..Can you ID mealybug? They're cottony looking patches and barely move..unlike whitefly that flutter over the plant if touched. In fact, you really don't see mealy move..If they start growing in number, then it's time to do something about it..If it is mealybug, it's important you rid them ASAP. You can start by applying rubbing alcohol over plant using Q-tips/cotton balls..some ppl spray the entire plant w/alcohol..Keep checking to see if white spots increase or grow.
Did I say plant in garden? Sorry..I meant set outside for summer, keeping in its pot..even a porch or balcony if no yard would do.
What type of soil did you use? If it's too heavy, it's probably not draining like it should be. Did you mix packaged soil w/say Perlite or sand? Toni

    Bookmark   June 25, 2007 at 5:28PM
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