Magnolia Daybreak problems

Discussion in 'Magnoliaceae' started by EmmaBee, Apr 26, 2021.

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  1. EmmaBee

    EmmaBee New Member

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    Bowen Island, BC
    I have a Magnolia Daybreak planted in full sun but close to some big cedars; planted in 2015, and it has never done well, giving only 2-5 blooms each year. This year it had 3 and they were coming along but something seems to have eaten them overnight, and is also chewing off the leaf buds. As well, the bark is badly split at the bottom. I poked around under the bark and found only an earwig. I dug around gently in the soil around the base for some kind of fat grub but didn’t find any.
    See photos.
    Any thoughts?
    Thank you.
    upload_2021-4-26_22-6-59.jpeg upload_2021-4-26_22-5-28.jpeg upload_2021-4-26_22-4-41.jpeg upload_2021-4-26_22-6-10.jpeg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 29, 2021
  2. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    One I planted in Island County, WA some years back was a bust also. In fact I have had multiple unsatisfactory outcomes with various deciduous magnolias over the years - the repeatedly recommended planting in deep fertile soil and maintaining a substantial mulch around them afterward are probably critical points. At least for those that aren't tough, popular types like star magnolia.

    Looking at yours two things I see are that

    - It is planted too deeply

    - There is blackening present which is often bacterial blight; such problems are pervasive enough that the late Brian O. Mulligan used to direct that the deciduous magnolias in the Seattle arboretum be given a lime sulphur dormant spray every year
     
  3. EmmaBee

    EmmaBee New Member

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    Thank you. Should I just dig away soil from around it to bring it closer to the surface?
    I will look into lime sulphur. I have an Arbutus nearby whose leaves go completely black each winter. Maybe they have the same problem ...
    Can I spray lime sulfur on soil? I’m thinking around the arbutus, after i clear all the debris from around it.
     
  4. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Dormant sprays are applied to deciduous trees during the winter. But what specific problem you have needs to be determined before chemical remedies come into the picture.
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2021
  5. EmmaBee

    EmmaBee New Member

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    Ok, thanks!
     

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