Help! - Madagascar Palm pest/disease

Discussion in 'Caudiciforms and Pachycaul Trees' started by xdoc77, Aug 19, 2007.

  1. xdoc77

    xdoc77 Member

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    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
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    1:05 AM
    Hello!

    I have a Madagascar Palm (Pachypodium lamerei) that I have had in various
    pots for the last 20 years. It is about 9 feet
    tall and grows about 8 inches/yr in it's current
    environment, which is a patio that receives a few
    hours of direct sunlight each day. I am in So Cal
    where the summers are warm and dry and the winters
    are moderate w/ no freezing.

    For the past several years, many of the new leaves at
    the top of the 2 trunks turn black and curl up
    at the tips. Any idea what might be causing this? I
    have tried fungiced but I don't really see any
    improvement (at least not for long). I've had this plant for 20 years and don't want to lose it!

    I have attatched 2 pictures of the leaves.

    Thanks in advance!
     

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  2. markinwestmich

    markinwestmich Active Member

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    Location:
    Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States
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    It almost looks like "leaf burn" from excessive fertilizer salts built up on the soil.

    If it were pests and/or disease, you would see a more uniform pattern on the foliage...such as a "mottled, splotchy" discoloration, leaf drop, and/or an overall "sickly" appearance to the plant.

    What I see on the photos is an otherwise healthy plant, with some blackened leaf tips on the new, tender foliage.
     
  3. markinwestmich

    markinwestmich Active Member

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    Location:
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    These are photos of my Pachypodium geayi. This specimen is about 16 in/41 cm tall and growing in full sun. Notice the deep green coloration of the long, narrow foliage, and felt-like undersides. I am using a well-draining bonsai soil with a little bit of slow-release, granular fertilizer.

    Edit: Further research has revealed that P. lamerei should be a lighter green than P. geayi, so I do not believe there is an issue with light exposure.

    Check out the "Succulent and Caudiciform Culture Guide" posted in this forum. In particular, click onto the Highland Succulents link and read about fertilization and soil. After reading, you may want to consider a soil change and modifying your fertilization practices.
     

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    Last edited: Aug 24, 2007

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