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Diagnosing Plant Problems

 overwatered is wilted and soil is wet Watering Problems  

Overwatering - brown or black spots on leaves; stems look mushy; plant is wilted though soil feels wet

 

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  • Underwatering - soil feels dry; plant is wilted
  • underwatered 

 

 

 

 

Insects

  • slug damageHoles in leaves;
    chewed leaves; distorted leaves;
    pin-size holes in the stem

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  •  backs of leaves look lacebugsilvery with tiny black spots;

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  • spider mite damage

     

     

    leaves look rusty

  

 

 

  

 

Fertilizer

  • under-fertilizedToo little fertilizer - stunted yellow growth
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  • fertilizer damageToo much fertilizer - leaves have brown, damaged looking edges;
    leaves may turn black
  • A slight excess can cause rich lush growth, usually with no flowering which can suffer damage
  • at onset of cold

  

 

 

 

 

Microorganisms

  • powdery mildewWhite powdery substance on the leaves;
    browning and spotting of the leaves

  

 

 

Other Plant Problems

  • Animals - bark stripped off trees and shrubs; if top of plant dies for no apparent reason, roots may have been eaten by grubs or gophers
  • Tree graft - union may not be compatible; though the tree has appeared to thrive for several years - tree goes into unexplainable decline
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These are just a few of the things which can damage otherwise healthy plants.  Hopefully these general guidelines will head you in the right direction to alleviate the problem and prevent future ones!