Weird growing habit??

Discussion in 'Maples' started by cthenn, Apr 27, 2011.

  1. cthenn

    cthenn Active Member

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    Hi, it's spring here in the SF Bay Area, and most of my 1 and 2 gallon maples have started leafing out. Some of them have been very vigorous this spring, putting out a lot of new leaves, and new shoots (Hana Matoi). However, some of them are putting out a very "weak" set of leaves, some of which don't seem to be getting to full size. Also, some are putting out new leaves just fine, but not hardly any new shoots. On some of these, the buds from the previous year swelled up and then started producing leaves, but not any new growth apart from the leaves. Some of these I have had for a season or two, and it's only this year that these plants have not done as well.

    I know it could still be early, but some have been like this for over a few weeks, and appear to have stopped growing whereas others are still going strong with new growth...

    I'm not sure if this is a normal function of spring, or the weather we had and are having, or is something else...

    Any thoughts?
     
  2. kaydye

    kaydye Active Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    What is also weird is I was going to post that same question today because the same thing is happening to my maples both in pots and outside and I am in Central Illinois! I have some that have buds/leaves throughout the entire tree, some with areas on one side of the tree that are leafed out and the other side nothing, some with leaves all the way out at the bottom, but then the buds (while they still look healthy) have not come out. And some with sparse leafing out throughout the entire tree. It's crazy, there is not rhyme or reason to it. What has your weather been like? We had record snow, but temps weren't terribly cold. It has been a loooong cold wet spring, which I kind of attributed it to. It started out looking like we were going to have an early spring, but then the rain came and cold stayed. It's May tomorrow and we are still having lows forecast in the upper 30's F. a few days next week with highs only in the upper 50's. We had a spring like this a few years ago and it was terrible. The farmers couldn't get the fields planted until late, they had all kinds of fungus problems due to the moisture, the squirrels were my biggest problem because they ate the leaves off my trees in ground and would also get in my pots and eat everything. They are doing that again to all my maples this year and it's so frustrating.
    Kay
     
  3. cthenn

    cthenn Active Member

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    We had a very long dry spell in January, though still cold. It did warm up in the first few weeks of Feb, and I was concerned about the plants "waking up" early, but they didn't. Then it rained like crazy in March, and then dried up in April. It appears as if there was not a prolonged, slow progression from Winter to Spring. Now it's in the 80's...

    It's been really weird for my plants, as it appears most have stopped producing new leaves or growth. Any of the newer leaves are coming out a lame bland yellow/green color without any of their telltale coloration or markings. Like I said before, some have done really well and grown like crazy, while others have put out meager, small leaves and virtually no new shoots...
     
  4. Gomero

    Gomero Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years

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    Cthenn,

    I may suggest you verify you do not have a weevil grubs problem.
    A heavy infection of grubs may result in the symptoms you are describing for potted maples.
    Gomero
     
  5. cthenn

    cthenn Active Member

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    What should I look for?
     
  6. maf

    maf Generous Contributor Maple Society 10 Years

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    The only way I know to check for the grubs of vine weevils is to remove the plant from the pot and observe the roots. If there are plenty of healthy roots, especially white ones, around the outside of the rootball you likely do not have weevil grubs. If there does not seem to be as many roots as there should be it is a good idea to remove the soil to check for the grubs, which are somewhat maggotlike in appearance.

    In very severe cases they also eat the cambium at the base of the trunk, which can easily be seen if you dig down around the base of the stem.

    (For reference the adults look like this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Otiorhynchus_sulcatus_23-8-2007_20-10-41.JPG.)
     

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