“Is this plant dead or can it sprout again?” This is an unfortunately too common question. We are often consulted for trees that have not yet sprouted or for battered plants that have lacked water, accused the cold or suffered some setback. Obviously, we can’t offer the answer, we don’t have the plant in front of me, but we are going to try to help make something clear.
Protect the health of nearby trees and vegetation with our superior mulching services in Perth. Here at Perth Tree Services we’ll be happy to assist you and help you have a beautiful garden.
- Discard that it is deciduous
We must start with the most obvious: there are many species – deciduous trees are a clear example of this – that emerge from their leaves with the first cold. The reason is very consistent and is justified as an adaptation mechanism. During the winter the energy they would spend on maintaining their leaves would not be compensated for that obtained in the absorption of nutrients. So, despite having to replace them later, they choose to get rid of them.
In this sense, we have very present deciduous trees: species such as oak, beech or linden. But other non-arboreal ones, such as rose bushes or virgin vines, would also fall into the same category. It should not surprise us that they lose the leaves in autumn and recover them later when spring arrives. It is clear that this should be the case and therefore before tearing it out of the pot, we must ensure that the plant is not deciduous.
- Make sure you do not lack irrigation
But … what if it is in the middle of summer when they lose the leaves? This is more common than you imagine and does not mean that the plant is sick, only that it has been stressed by heat and lack of water. It is very common in newly planted trees or shrubs to which the first summer surprises even in the period of adaptation.
When the heat is extreme and they lose more liquid than they manage to absorb, they use the same strategy as when autumn arrives and blow their leaves at once. It would be convenient then a little help (it is good to increase the irrigation in these cases), always with moderation, of course. And without going over; You already know that if the soil is wet there will still be water available and it is not convenient to water.
On other occasions there is a previous symptomatology: the leaves languish before they fall, as if giving clues to what happens to them. It is possible to recover the plant if you attend it on time. While in a pot, you can immerse it in a bowl of water for a few minutes. Then let it drain well. The “transport” substrate with which they come from the nursery should be replaced as soon as possible. The peat after being dry hardens and hardly retains water.
- Help … too much water!
Be careful, the straight and deciduous leaves can also be an indication of excess moisture in the soil. If the roots lack air, unable to breathe they die, showing signs very similar in the plant to those of water shortage.
Too much water is worse than its lack.
More plants die from excess irrigation than by default. This is the reality! Make sure the problem is the moisture deficit and not vice versa, before making it even worse. It is always easier to recover a plant by hydrating it, than if its roots are already rotten.
Have you gone through irrigation? Maybe you can still remedy it. On the other hand, to reduce the risk of incidents it is a good idea to use quality substrates, preferably loose. You will facilitate drainage and consequently aeration of the roots.
Finally, the clogged hole in the pots is another major cause of “root asphyxiation.” Be sure to check that everything is correct. Do not fail on such an important issue. Here are more tips on watering your plants.
- Is your plant sensitive to cold?
Too cold can cause your magnificent plant to end up being a sad corpse. We already know how deciduous species react. But what happens when it is a tropical plant, and in principle perennial, the one that “gets peeled”? In many occasions, endemic plants of warm places manage to live without problems in less favorable climates (provided that the frosts are anecdotal, of course).
The case of Bougainvillea is a clear example. Throughout the Mediterranean he manages to spend the perfect winter and with its whole leaves. Near the waterfront, yes. Only a few kilometers away, outside the beneficial influence of the sea, will it be cold enough to force her to lost.
Prune visible parts
Get a cutting utensil. You will need something that can pass through the roots and stems of small leaves, such as a kitchen knife. You can also use scissors, but if you leave a plant for a while and it grows a lot, you may need special pruning shears to cut it.
Sterilise kitchen knives before using them on the floor. To do this, rub alcohol on the leaf and let it dry.
Prune damaged leaves
Start with the rotten leaves. If necessary, carefully move the branches and leaves to find all the leaves that are dry, brown or dead. You can also remove unhealthy leaves that are very discolored. Use the knife or scissors to cut them by the stem.
- Do it carefully so you don’t spoil healthy leaves by accident.
- Pests or diseases in these leaves can infect the plant, so it is necessary to remove them.
- The leaves dry due to insufficient light, as well as too little or too much water.
Cut the excess outer leaves
Use a knife or pruning shears to remove enough healthy leaves to get the plant to fit in the pot. Place the cutting tool at the base of the stem and make a clean cut. These leaves are the oldest and contain most of the aloe vera gel.
The gel has many medicinal purposes. If you want to use these leaves, cut the spiny edges and store the leaves in the refrigerator until you want to extract the gel.
Avoid cutting the leaves closest to the main stem of the plant. These leaves are young and are necessary to replace old leaves.
Protect the health of nearby trees and vegetation with our superior mulching services in Perth. Here at Perth Tree Services we’ll be happy to assist you.