sad kalmia latifolia

Discussion in 'Woody Plants' started by Cherish, Jul 3, 2009.

  1. Cherish

    Cherish Member

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    I got two kalmias two years ago. One with small leaves and one with bigger leaves. The smaller leaved plant has been fine. The other I thought maybe was just having a rough start but here after two years it continues to be in decline with the leaves usually drooping and always a few in various stages of turning brown and falling off. It flowers in the spring, though lots of the flowers heads don't make it to maturity before browning, but some of them do make it. Maybe that's in part just because the yard is rather shady. That would be ok if it doesn't flower great but the leaves falling off just won't do.

    The soil here is clay but that was heavily amended with compost for both of them. I gave it some espoma hollytone fertilizer earlier in the spring.

    Maybe I just got unlucky with this one but I thought I'd see if anyone had any ideas about it before I think of replacing it with a new one. Thanks!
     

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  2. chimera

    chimera Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    double post
     
  3. chimera

    chimera Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Maybe it's a phytophthora or crown gall problem. Looks like 'Peppermint' .
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2009
  4. Cherish

    Cherish Member

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    Well, it is peppermint and I suppose in comparison with the other, minuet, the base does look slightly swollen with a different texture. Though the ground is largely clay, it is full of rocks, and the yard slopes away from this shrub so it doesn't sound like a spot encouraging phytophthora, still doesn't seem out of the question. Sounds like it's time for a new one and maybe I'll try to mound it up a little better above the clay. Thanks.
     
  5. GRSJr

    GRSJr Active Member 10 Years

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    I have the same soil that you do, but I probably don't add as much conditioners as you do.

    These Kalmia llatafolia have thrived:
    'Elf'
    'Keepsake'
    'Pinwheel'
    'Pristine'
    These are growing beautifully, especially 'Pristine'.

    These have died on several tries:
    'Bullseye'
    'Elf'
    'Goodrich'
    'Nipmunk'
    'Ostbo Red'
    'Minuet'
    'Peppermint'
    'Silver Dollar'
    'Minuet'
    'Keepsake'
    'Sarah'
    We do have phytophthora which kills off Rhododendron after 8 or so years. Haven't found
    any cure for it. Don't think this is the problem with the Kalmia though. They just won't establish.

    Interesting that you find a difference in performance between 'Minuet' and 'Peppermint'
    but I can't grow either.

    Ray
     

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