The chief cause of drooping rhododendron leaves, as opposed to leaves showing additional symptoms of spots and discoloration, are soil-borne fungal diseases that thrive in moisture. The fungus is quite prevalent in wet, poor-draining soil that has a strong clay base. Failure to follow the listed instructions can lead to serious illness or even death. She writes for numerous online publications. This a normal occurrence with all evergreen shrubs and is no cause for concern. It's affected by soil & atmospheric moisture levels & outside air temperatures. Watering in the summer when temperatures are high and drought is possible is also important for preventing summer stress burns. If your rhododendron is injured every year move it to a new location in early March. A good choice for mulch is bark chips, pine needles or large leaves lightly raked over the soil. If your rhododendron leaves suffer from desiccation or drying in cold wind, you may have to replace it with a more cold-hardy cultivar. Rhododendron wilty, droopy leaves. Fungicides that will suppress but not eliminate phytophthora dieback include those containing the active ingredients mefenoxam and metalaxyl. If you have clay soil, amend it to improve draining before you plant rhododendrons. Follow the directions on the label for application. The leaves of the smaller azalea are usually pointed and narrow; the leaves of the rhododendron are generally large and leathery.. Rhododendron wilty, droopy leaves. If you try to pull up the roots, the stem may break. It wintered over well this past season and had about 5 clumps of flowers. The rhododendron can droop even if the air temperature is not extremely hot. glossy green leaves and bountiful blooms. Leaves are the best indicators of plant problems. Copyright Leaf Group Ltd. // Leaf Group Lifestyle. Morning light with afternoon shade or filtered light is best for the shrubs. The shrub is remarkably hardy in the right growing conditions. A good choice for mulch is bark chips, pine needles or large leaves lightly raked over the soil. Yellow rhododendron leaves often represent the plant’s expression of dissatisfaction with its care. They can even be found growing in the arctic and north temperate zones. They’re just reacting to cold temperatures. Misting when temperatures exceed 95 degrees F can help. Many a Rhodo lover has said that they can tell how cold it is outside by looking at Rhododendron leaves. Rhodies are picky about the soil you plant them in and about how much water they like. This is most pronounced on the rhododendron varieties with thick, waxy leaves. Leaf angle (drooping) is a result of hydration in the petiole (leaf stem). Rhododendrons can be planted along foundations, as a hedge, mixed in a landscape theme or as a single-specimen planting. This is because the plants root ball remains dry despite the surrounding moisture. The rhododendron can droop even if the air temperature is not extremely hot. In this case, the soil’s pH must be checked. Mulch around the base of the rhododendrons to help water retention in the roots and prevent drooping. The … Also purchase a foliar spray to control the adult weevils. ... Other signs include retarded growth and drooping foliage. To help prevent this make sure the shrub has sufficient water. It is not lack of water as the pot is watered regularly. Q: I got through winter relatively unscathed, but one problem is a large, 35-year-old rhododendron that has wilted, curling leaves on about a third of the branches. Keep voles away from the trunk of the shrub by not applying mulch all the way to the trunk. Rhododendrons encounter diseases, fungi, and climatic issues that can result in brown spots, or even entirely brown leaves. Discovering the cause will make treatment options much more effective, and employing basic preventive practices will enable you to avoid the problems in the future. A newly planted rhododendron will droop even if the soil conditions surrounding the plant are moist. I have a Rhododendron in a pot which flowers beautifully from early June. I have been using a chemical herbicide for a number of years to control weeds around the base of the plant. Could do with some expert advice please. The plant is about 7 feet tall and 6 feet in diameter. Geneviève Member. If the shrub continues to droop during the early morning hours, water the rhododendron thoroughly. To control two-banded Japanese weevils, use Orthene. Wilting, browning at the edges, brown spots in the center of the leaf or very dark green veins are all signs of different problems. Correct drooping leaves by … Nighttime is often the best time to see adult weevil activity. Drooping rhododendron leaves. The bottom of the stem near the soil will be discolored brown, and the roots will look blackened and soggy. of the leaf. Leaf drooping may actually be a response to increased light. Phytophthora root rot can cause a rhododendron to suddenly droop and then die. Look for adult weevils on the rhododendron during the day. Misting when temperatures exceed 95 degrees F can help. Spray the foliage with a fine water mist every day during extreme heat. When the leaves are yellow but the region along the veins remains dark green, the plant likely suffers from chlorosis, which is caused by a magnesium, nitrogen or iron deficiency. Rododendron leaves may also drop in cold, windy weather. © Copyright 2020 Hearst Communications, Inc. The pores through which the plant loses water and takes up air are located on the underside of the leaves. The way to healthy azaleas, camellias and rhododendrons: glossy green leaves and bountiful blooms. Frequently sunburned leaves are the result of the lack of water. In summer, when temperatures become excessive, leaves curl upwards to control internal leaf temperatures. Wilting Rhododendrons. Drought could have been a major factor in your Rhododendrons brown leaves. Some rhododendrons hold their leaves for a season, dropping the older leaves in spring, fall or both seasons. Help! Wilting, browning at the edges, brown spots in the center of the leaf or very dark green veins are all signs of different problems. All of a sudden it became wilted looking, the leaves rounded out and it looked ill. We had some major rains, and it seemed to perk up some. It wintered over well this past season and had about 5 clumps of flowers. Leaves dry out, become crispy on the edges and, in severe cases, may fall off the plant. Throughout the growing season, they are generally shaded by the overstory. Several people have expressed alarm at the drooping leaves on their rhododendrons during the recent cold weather. Within in the past week or so I noticed that the leaves were drooping a bit, but wasn’t too concerned. After we cut large conifers which shaded a 30 year old rhododendron, this one became exposed to morning and mid day Sunlight instead Of just afternoon sun. This is not so bad but when it happens during summer, It is a sign that your rhododendron is too dry and needs to be watered immediately or it will dry up, have wilting leaves and eventually die. June 2015 in Problem solving. The best way to control the fungus is through prevention. It’s actually a species native to Connecticut, I was told. All rhododendron varieties naturally droop and roll their leaves up tightly during very cold weather. Chemicals are ineffective on this fungus. Follow the directions on the label. It marks rhododendron leaves with unsightly pock-marked yellowish spotting on the upper surface during the summer. Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →, Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of mozzercork, Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Pete Birkinshaw, Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Margaret Anne Clarke, Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of off to London for a while) (Kathleen Conklin, Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Hans-Peter, Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Sharon Mollerus, American Rhododendron Society: Rhododendron Care, University of Missouri: Growing Azaleas And Rhododendrons, Ohio State University: Growing Rhododendrons. The Victoria Rhododendron Society adds that older leaves naturally turn yellow, and they are replaced every one to three years. I'm quite new to gardening and new to this forum. It sits against the north facing wall of my house. ! Instead of blooming around Memorial Day, it blooms around the 4th of July, nearly 6 weeks later, and is therefore called the 4th of July Rhododendron. Weevils can cause a Rhododendron to droop and die. The rhododendron can droop even if the air temperature is not extremely hot. To avoid drying out, the leaves close their stomata, causing them to curl and droop. Mist the plant every afternoon even if the nights are cold or windy. So make sure the hose drips slowly for several hours to thoroughly water the root ball. Discovering the cause will make treatment options much more effective, and employing basic preventive practices will enable you to avoid the problems in the future. A newly planted rhododendron will droop even if the soil conditions surrounding the plant are moist. Sunburn and sunscald go hand in hand with water lost from leaves. Reviewin… The leading theories on this phenomenon seem to deal more with issues at the cellular level. Paint splits with a grafting compound or tree wound sealer. The flowers are tubular-, funnel-, or bell-shaped—and often fragrant. Some of the most common dangers to your rhododendron include aphids, root rot and Japanese beetles. The shrub will simply droop due to low humidity. Mist the plant every afternoon even if the nights are cold or windy. It bloomed the most beautiful blossoms and was growing like crazy. Winter damage that makes foliage brown can have several causes, but all relate to excessive drying of rhododendron leaves. If the vole chews all the way around the trunk, the plant will die. Allow the water to slowly drip out so the root ball can become moist. Rhododendrons are an evergreen bush, which means it sports leaves throughout the year. Sometimes new roots may be observed to regenerate near the root crown of the plant. Plants “breathe” through stomata, pores in their leaves. Apply a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch for best results, but keep the mulch away from the trunk of the shrub. I purchased an expensive yellow-flowering rhododendron back in May and planted it in a raised foundation planting I have on the north side of my home. The curled leaves protect the rhododendron plant from more water loss. Not just the leaves, but the entire top 5 inches of each stem have dropped to one side. Rhododendron leaves curl and droop during the summer months...if they lose too much water, just as other plants wilt. I planted the yellow rhododendron a few months ago and it's been growing fine until a few days ago. It’s actually a species native to Connecticut, I was told. Splitting bark is a dangerous problem and rhododendrons distressed this way may die back. They are great for landscaping and produce beautiful flowers in the spring and summer. Jun 10, 2003 Canoneer . This can be caused by nutrient poor soils (such as sandy soils) but in my case the cause was adding mulch to the surrounding soil of the azalea. Paint splits with a grafting compound or tree wound sealer. Slow die-back on azaleas and rhododendrons is a pretty common occurrence. I have a rhododendron. If your plant is already ill, the added stress of an infestation may kill it. What Causes Gardenia Plants to Turn Yellow? Other varieties can hold their leaves for three or even four seasons. Leaf curl on Rhododendrons is most frequently seen when the plants are under stress from drought, stem injury or cold temperatures. You can keep your rhododendrons healthy and looking the way you want them to by … At first it had lots of new growth and nice yellow flowers. Make sure the root ball of a newly planted rhododendron is level with the soil. Each year your rhododendron will shed a proportion of its foliage during the spring and summer, mainly older leaves. This summer was very hot and dry in our area. Many gardeners worry when their prized rhododendron droops, but the cause can often be figured out and the solutions are relatively easy to prevent this common problem. The pores through which the plant loses water and takes up air are located on the underside of the leaves. The leaves of the smaller azalea are usually pointed and narrow; the leaves of the rhododendron are generally large and leathery. Why Is My Rhododendron Drooping? The leading theories on this phenomenon seem to deal more with issues at the cellular level. Splitting bark is a dangerous problem and rhododendrons distressed this way may die back. Details R. sutchuenense is a large evergreen shrub or small tree, eventually reaching up to 8m in height, with drooping leaves, up to 30cm long, and thick young shoots. Healthy, vibrant leaves are an important part of the spring performance of a rhododendron (Rhodenderon spp.). Voles will often chew on the bark and roots of the rhododendron near the crown. Instead of blooming around Memorial Day, it blooms around the 4th of July, nearly 6 weeks later, and is therefore called the 4th of July Rhododendron. This a two year old shrub. They will open up and come back to life once it warms up. During a cold snap, your rhododendron’s leaves may droop, but should usually recover when milder weather returns. If the water is not set to slowly drip, it will simply defuse and spread to the surrounding soil and the root ball will remain dry. Early weevil identification is important to save the rhododendron. Rhodies have fairly shallow root systems, so they need a regular supply of water. Rhododendrons are lovely plants with enchanting blooms that range from dark red to lavender. Help! Determining the underlying problem is necessary to restore the rhododendron's health. Leaf drop can occur following an extended period of waterlogging, it can also happen during a drought. foggers Posts: 2. This spring’s bloom was the best in a long time. All of a sudden it became wilted looking, the leaves rounded out and it looked ill. We had some major rains, and it seemed to perk up some. Its symptoms begin with brittle, reddish-brown roots close to the soil. Leaf curling has absolutely nothing to do with leaf hydration on a healthy plant. Biology. A rhododendron in full bloom is a glorious sight and in many circles it is known as the king of evergreen flowering shrubs. Water immediately! Messages: 10 Likes Received: 0 Location: Sunshine Coast, BC, canada. Choose a mulch that is course so air flow can still reach the roots, but that the soil is shaded to prevent water evaporation. Correct drooping leaves … These are the 2 common causes of this that I’ve seen. That tongue … Rhododendrons will grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 through 9, depending on the cultivar. It was doing well all this year with new limbs and growth. Splitting bark is a dangerous problem and rhododendrons distressed this way may die back. Determining the underlying problem is necessary to restore the rhododendron's health. Rhododendrons, azaleas, and camellias are amongst our most spectacular flowering shrubs. Chemical fungicides are not effective in controlling phytophthora root rot once symptoms appear. However, it never really perked up; the next day I watered it again and the same result! The two-banded Japanese weevils are immune to carbaryl, diazinon and malathion. curl in summer... Rhododendron leaves curl and droop during the summer months...if they lose too much water, just as other plants wilt. The larvacidal drench can be purchased at a garden center. Leaf curling has absolutely nothing to do with leaf hydration on a healthy plant. The leaves may suddenly droop, and the rhododendron may die in a few weeks. droopy rhododendron. Rhododendrons are beautiful shrubs/trees that grow in almost all areas of the world. They are characterised by the sudden wilting and death of a branch or part of a plant and tend to attack where plants have been physically damaged in some way. Buy disease-free rhodendron plants from a reputable nursery and avoid those that have dark, discolored roots, appear wilted in the morning or are not the normal green color. Rhododendrons are an evergreen bush, which means it sports leaves throughout the year. A rhododendron planted too deeply in soil will often develop phytophthora root rot. Now the leaves are turning a rust color, curling upward, and falling off. My rhododendron, planted last spring, has all of a sudden got a massive droop on. However these, and several others, need acid soil to thrive. If the shrub continues to droop during the early morning hours, water the rhododendron thoroughly. The leaves are thick and leathery and evergreen in all the species except the azalea species. While leaves die, they may remain brown and crispy on branches until they fall off in summer. Rhododendrons Suffering From Cold Weather, The Edges of My Primrose Leaves Are Turning Brown, How to Keep Boxwood Evergreens From Turning Yellow. It is a sorry looking specimen! Buds fail to open; This is caused by a fungal infection known as Bud Blast. Mulch around the base of the rhododendrons to help water retention in the roots and prevent drooping. Asked August 19, 2018, 4:28 PM EDT. Rhododendrons will droop during a drought when the weather is dry and the humidity is low. To help prevent this make sure the shrub has sufficient water. If your rhododendron is injured every year move it to a new location in early March. Once a section becomes afflicted the progress of the affliction spreads rapidly. Paint a tree sealant onto the damage done by the voles, which should help the rhododendron return to health. I planted a rhododendron over a month ago, and it was doing so well. This a two year old shrub. When brown leaves show up in a rhododendron, it's usually at winter's end -- right before flowering time. Over the past few weeks, however, I notice that while much of the plant looks good (leaves appear normal), parts of the plant just seem to be dying off - leaves curl up and then just fall off. These fungi, also called “water mold,” thrive in wet weather or poorly drained soil. The oldest leaves are first to drop, leaves higher up the plant may also show signs of browning on the edges or the tip. Not just the leaves, but the entire top 5 inches of each stem have dropped … She has traveled extensively to such places as India and Sri Lanka to widen and enhance her writing and knowledge base. In addition, both amateur professional rhododendron enthusiasts have made countless reports of leaf curling in various rhododendron species. The soil should never be soggy wet, but it should be moist to the touch. Sometimes new roots may be observed to regenerate near the root crown of the plant. When temperatures drop below freezing, rhododendron leaves may cup and curl at the edges and droop. By far the most popular group of plants in this category are the Rhododendrons. ! They will not tolerate alkaline soil conditions: their leaves go yellow, growth is stunted and they eventually fail. If the air temperature tops 95 degrees F, the foliage will often droop. Though we generally don't think about photosynthesis in the winter months, evergreen plants actually experience the highest light intensities of the year during this time period. Inclusion of a product does not indicate a recommendation or endorsement by the RHS. When the leaves curl, these pores are protected, and the evaporation of additional water is reduced. I have a 10+ year old rhododendron. Learn which plants thrive in your Hardiness Zone with our new interactive map! Rhododendron diseases. Do not plant a rhododendron in water-logged soil conditions or near areas of spring water runoff or buildup. However, once the canopy leaves fall, things change. You can also choose a more protected location for planting rhododendron to prevent winter and summer injury. Leaf curl on Rhododendrons is most frequently seen when the plants are under stress from drought, stem injury or cold temperatures. That tongue-twisting name is usually shortened to “azalea root rot”. Jun 10, 2003 Canoneer . Any advice please? Rhododendrons can be planted along foundations, as a hedge, mixed in a landscape theme or as a single-specimen planting. By curling and drooping, rhododendron leaves drastically reduce the amount of sunlight hitting them when they can’t use it. Leaf curl on Rhododendrons is most frequently seen when the plants are under stress from drought, stem injury or cold temperatures. My rhododendron, planted last spring, has all of a sudden got a massive droop on. They need water fast, and they will pick up fast, but damage may have been done which will not show again for about 6 months when the plant starts to collapse. Discussion in 'Outdoor Gardening in the Pacific Northwest' started by Geneviève, Jul 9, 2012. Flowers come in a wide variety of pinks, purples, reds and white. Within in the past week or so I noticed that the leaves were drooping a bit, but wasn’t too concerned. These actions are normal and are taken to reduce the leaf surface exposed to the elements. Burned tips on this year's new growth is typically indicative of lack of water as the plant withdraws water from the tips of the new foliage first. A: One of my primary garden rules is never to argue with Mama, whether it be your own mother or Mother Nature. Leaf curl on Rhododendrons is most frequently seen when the plants are under stress from drought, stem injury or cold temperatures. Biology. The rhododendron did receive waterings when the leaves started to look a bit limp. To avoid drying out, the leaves close their stomata, causing them to curl and droop. I have a Rhododendron in a pot which flowers beautifully from early June. Rolled Up Leaves in Summer Could Be a Sign of Dry Soil Much like any other plant, if a rhododendron doesn't get enough water, it will wilt. I have a rhododendron. There are cultivars available with some resistance to phytophtora dieback. Rhododendrons will droop during a drought when the weather is dry and the humidity is low. Could do with some expert advice please. When the leaves curl, these pores are protected, and the evaporation of additional water is reduced. However these, and several others, need acid soil to thrive. Inclusion of a product does not indicate a recommendation or endorsement by the RHS. ANSWER: Curled and droopy rhododendron leaves aren’t sick. All Rights Reserved. These shrubs prefer climates with adequate rainfall and moist summers. Here in the northeast it's been around 100 degrees and two days ago noticed the plant was drooping excessively, so I watered it. This summer was very hot and dry in our area. Bud Blast. The plant has some shade and the soil has some clay. To remedy this cause of droop in a new plant, set a dripping hose at the base of the shrub. By the time you see rhododendrons with droopy leaves in summer drought, they are really under a lot of stress through lack of water. Mulch around the base of the rhododendrons to help water retention in the roots and prevent drooping. Leaf scorch also can occur when rainy, overcast weather is suddenly followed by windy, sunny days. It hardly set any … Once weevil activity has been determined, purchase a larvacidal drench to apply to the soil to kill the larvae. During Summer, it is … If you see your rhododendron leaves turning yellow, review each and every element of the plant’s care. It bloomed the most beautiful blossoms and was growing like crazy. Use a flashlight to look closely at the shrub. Unfortunately, the lovely plant is prone to disease and pests. Our summer has been more humid than usual. Rhododendrons encounter diseases, fungi, and climatic issues that can result in brown spots, or even entirely brown leaves. Throughout the growing season, they are generally shaded by the overstory. Leaf angle (drooping) is a result of hydration in the petiole (leaf stem). Ensure your soil is well-aerated and well-drained, and don’t plant rhodendrons in areas where water collects or where plants have previously suffered from root rot. Buds Don’t Open . Throughout the growing season, they are generally shaded by the overstory. Asked August 19, 2018, 4:28 PM EDT. Trusses, of up to ten bell-shaped flowers, are borne in late winter and early spring ranging in colour from … It's been healthy until now and actually thrived. Drooping foliage on a rhododendron is common in extreme heat. This year the leaves are drooping and the flower buds (of which there are many) are just not opening. It seems to be happening in sections of the plant. drooping of Rhododendron arboreum in his Himalayan Journals of 1855, and explorers such as E. H. Wilson, F. Kingdon-Ward, and R. Farrar made frequent notes on the temperature-sensitive (thermotropic) leaf movements in rhododendron. Indeed, as temperatures drop, the leaves of these evergreen shrubs frequently droop and … Soon your rhododendron should perk up with no ill effects from hot temperatures. The most common cause is the disease Phytophthora cinnamomi. Adults, cast skins, and brown excrement can be found on the undersides of affected leaves. When temperatures drop below freezing, rhododendron leaves may cup and curl at the edges and droop. Rhododendrons can be planted along foundations, as a hedge, mixed in a landscape theme or as a single-specimen planting. Any advice please? Sometimes one or more of these are contributing factors because if the rhodys went into the winter season dry from summer drought they are then more likely to be further stressed by cold winters. These shrubs prefer climates with adequate rainfall and moist summers. The plants are able to survive and bloom for many years. To help prevent this make sure the shrub has sufficient water. The most common cause is the disease Phytophthora cinnamomi. Slow die-back on azaleas and rhododendrons is a pretty common occurrence.