Red Twig Dogwood - Leaf spot

jonijumpup(z5, GR MI)September 23, 2006

I put in a small row of Ivory Halo this past spring, and I have been plagued with leaf spot on all the leaves. I did not check the plants when I bought them. Did not know enough to do that. I have sprayed them with a lot of different things to no avail. If I start spraying early next spring will that likely be more successful? Once the fungus is in the soil near the plants am I doomed to a permanent problem?

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bboy(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Never spray willy nilly. Always find out what the right product is and use that, following the label.

DOGWOODS (Timber Press) says Cornus alba 'Bailhalo' is "moderately susceptible to summer leaf spot." Raking and disposal of fallen leaves in autumn recommended.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2006 at 12:41AM
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IME, shrub dogwoods tend to be most prone to leaf spot when they are under stress. This is why they almost always seem to display signs of this in a nursery setting. OTOH, once established in the garden under proper conditions, my experience is that leaf spot is seldom a serious issue, rarely enough of a concern to treat. None of my shrub dogwoods, including a mature plant of Ivory Halo, experiences any significant spotting.

I'd make sure cultural conditions are being met satisfactorily, practice good sanitation (as mentioned above) and allow the plants sufficient time to establish properly. I'd bet you'll see much less of this problem next season and spraying will not be a concern.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2006 at 9:53AM
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bboy(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Incidence varies regionally, more a problem back there then here.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2006 at 1:53PM
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I would concur with what gardengal said about first year. My first year with I.H. was a mess. And the next years were fine. However, with age, (a/k/a not enough pruning), leaf spot and even tip blight occurred heavily with damp years.

So, this year I did a rejuvenation pruning to the ground and the foliage was great despite a very wet season. Now I will attempt to prune (thin out a third of the stems) on a regular basis to keep it less dense and provide more air circulation.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2006 at 6:56PM
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jonijumpup(z5, GR MI)

thanks to all of you for the great advice and comments

    Bookmark   October 1, 2006 at 9:50PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

what difference does it make.. the leaves will fall off within 2 weeks here in MI ....

what you are seeing is nothing more than early dormancy of those leaves ... and the resultant attack by various stuff ...

i sure hope you didn't waste spray on it..

they grow like weeds in MI ... do NOT waste another minute worrying about it ....


    Bookmark   October 2, 2006 at 10:23AM
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bboy(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Any operation that removes overwintering inoculum will reduce subsequent incidence.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2006 at 2:54PM
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happyhoe(z6 OH)

Leaf spot in Ivory Halo dogwood is cultural issue. Plants exposed to overhead watering are most likely to develop the problem. If you go to a nursery that grows this plant on dripper lines you are less likely to see black spot than if you go to a nursery that uses an overhead watering mechanism.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2006 at 6:39PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

soooo bboy .. they can blow out/rake up/cleanup the fallen leaves.. and send them to the landfill in a plastic bag in a few weeks ....

i still dont see a need for chemicals at this time of year in MI ....


    Bookmark   October 3, 2006 at 8:57AM
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jonijumpup(z5, GR MI)

Thanks again for your kind comments. What to do now is not the issue. The plants have been affected from the start, and are not as healthy as they should be. I am hoping that next season they will do better.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2006 at 3:01PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

arent red twig dogwoods relatively cheap plants... unless you have some special named variety ????

if so .. why not just get rid of these ... think of it this way .. are you prepared to spray these things forever??? if you shorten your life by 5 minutes each time you expose yourself to the spray .. are they worth it????

why not destoy them.. and replace them with some hardy, disease free plants ...

good luck


    Bookmark   October 4, 2006 at 12:57PM
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sue36(Z5 Maine)

I was hoping I could use this old thread, rather than start a new one.

I have 4 Ivory Halo Cornus, 2 large and 2 small. All four are in pots due to a delayed landscaping project (they will get planted in the next week, the bed was just finished). None had leaf spot when I bought them (at least I didn't see any, and I inspect plants carefully). The two larger ones have it very bad. The two smaller ones have it as well, but not as bad.

Since it is only early August, I have quite a ways to go before the natural leaf drop. They have not been over-head watered, but until this week it's been rainy here.

Does anyone have any recommendations on what I should do? Should I spray them, and if so with what? Can I cut them back to aboout 12" now, or can that only be done in spring? Any advice is appreciated. Thanks.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2007 at 11:40AM
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My Red-Twigged Dogwoods always suffer from leaf spot and premature leaf drop in the late summer, but, as was mentioned before, ... all of mine are under trees.

I have also found that these shrubs will be the first and worst affected from lack of water for me (i.e. they'll wilt and drop their leaves).

OTOH, they'll get their red stem color early in the fall and it lasts until leaf out in the spring ... and their foliage is, typically, beautiful up through mid-summer.

That said, I wouldn't use this plant in a setting by itself ... or in a spot that has particular prominence.

It's a good shrub to use in a grouping, so that other plants can pick up the slack for the two months out of the year when the Dogwood is less attractive.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2007 at 3:10PM
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sue36(Z5 Maine)

This is so frustrating. I purchased these because I saw one at a nearby garden center in their display garden. It was huge and very prominent in the bed. I didn't notice any spotting on it, and that was late July at the earliest.

"...under proper conditions, my experience is that leaf spot is seldom a serious issue..."

Does anyone know what the proper conditions are? Sounds like no overhead watering. I always water at the base, so that's not an issue (unless it rains, of course). Under trees is bad? Darn. These were going to be partially under the canopy of a few very tall birch trees?

I hate to spray, but since they are in pots it would be isolated. Anyone know what I spray with?

    Bookmark   August 3, 2007 at 4:41PM
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