Q. My Japanese privet was doing great. I gave it your EDDHA iron chelate elixir 6 months ago. I was watering three times a week and have now cut back to once a week. The leaves are now yellowing with brown spots, the same as it did last year. So, what should I do to the green back?
|Privet with leaf yellowing|
A. We see this yellowing of the leaves quite a bit in Ligustrum or privet. They prefer moist and enriched soils so I think this is a combination of both a lack of fertilizer and poor soil conditions.
They are not a very good desert plant and don’t really like desert landscapes very much. The yellowing is most likely a combination of high light intensity along with a general decline in health which makes them more reactive to these tough conditions.
|Black spots developing on leaves weakened due to poor health. Perhaps anthracnose but should disappear if plant becomes healthy again.|
This may be too much for you but if you want to reinvigorate them I would go back in with some decent fertilizer such as Miracle Gro or Peters and either or both spray it on the foliage along with a teaspoon of Ivory liquid in each gallon of water. Then I would also follow up with some compost at the base of the plants and wood mulch to a depth of 4 inches or so.
You will probably not see much reaction this time of year since it is going into “hibernation” but should see a difference next spring. Keep the soil moist but the mulch will help to enrich the soil and keep the soil more moist than before.
Make sure it is getting adequate water. I would estimate about ten gallons per each application for that size of plant. That would be a minimum. You could do a bit more even like 15 gallons. They would like to be treated more like a rose bush than a cactus and would, in fact, like lawn watering schedules over tree and shrub watering. They do better in lawns is what I am saying. Don’t forget a fertilizer application along with your iron next February.