brown spots on my schefflera arboricola

siujanjiNovember 14, 2012

i would be so grateful if someone can identify what this is and how to treat it? i have several more pictures but i'm technically challenged and not sure how to upload multiple pictures.

so basically on my plant there are 3-4 leaves (all top new growth) showing these spots. the same spots appear on the under side of the leaf as well. when i touch the leaf it's dry and not sticky. i just discovered them tonight and am panicking about what to do. is it fungal disease? i haven't brought in any new plants anywhere near where it sits. i've had this plant for over 2 years and it's been happy and healthy.

i checked the stem and everywhere else on the plant for other symptoms, but it looks normal. any advice appreciated!

janice :..(

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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

It's hard to say. When is the last time you fertilized? With what? Have you checked carefully for mites? I don't think the brown spots are mite-related, but the plant does have the look of one infested with that pest, but that 'look' is also consistent with Alternaria blight, a fungal disease very common in scheffs.

Are you keeping the top of the soil constantly moist, or watering when you can still feel moisture in the top couple of inches of soil? Oedema would also be a suspect, especially if the issue is more pronounced on the underside of foliage. When the plant is over-watered and grown in low light, cool conditions, oedema is very common in scheffs.

If it was my plant, I'd ck for mites and make SURE I'm giving the plant the cultural conditions it wants in order to thrive. We can talk more about that if you like. If the lesions persist on new foliage after cultural corrections, I'd probably treat it with a systemic fungicide or discard it.


    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 7:53AM
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hello Al!

thanks so much for your reply.

fertilizer: never!
mites: none
watering: i water it once a week. i poke my finger in and usually it's quite dry before i water.

i have attached another picture of the tiny new growth. the look is so frightening : (

do you think by removing the affected leaves would help at all?

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 8:41PM
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and here is a picture of what it looks like underneath the affected leaves

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 8:42PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

When you (meaning me) don't know where to start, you have to fall back on the basics. When we garden in containers, we need to take responsibility for making sure our plants are getting a full compliment of nutrients in the right ratio and at a concentration neither to high or too low.

I'm going to link you to some basic information that will hopefully leave you feeling like resolution for your plant's problems is within your reach. Becoming a good grower doesn't happen by accident, and it doesn't even come automatically with years and years of experience. The key is to learn enough, fast enough, so we can avoid being bit on the butt by our mistakes, and by our shortcomings relative to our understanding of the basic needs of plants.

If you want to start a conversation that will almost certainly leave you with some fresh ways of looking at how to make your plants happy, we can do that. First though, let me suggest you read the thread I'll link you to below. Hopefully, it will leave you with questions and the feeling you'd like to learn even more.


Here is a link that might be useful: An overview

    Bookmark   November 14, 2012 at 9:51PM
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