Sick Trident Maple - HELP!!!

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Sick Trident Maple - HELP!!!

Postby lmrk » Fri Nov 09, 2007 4:37 pm

I purchased this Trident Maple as one of those "bonsai starters" a couple of months ago. Potted it up, and initially it was going really well. A couple of weeks ago, noticed that there were some brown "dead" bits on the tips of the leaves - this is getting worse as these photos show:

Image

Image

I'm not sure whether I'm watering it too much or not enough. Does anyone know whether over or under watering causes browning of Trident leaves?

Thank you

Leah
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Postby guzzigirl » Fri Nov 09, 2007 7:07 pm

turn it out of the pot and check your mix at the bottom. See if it is very wet or very dry. Did you fertilise just before it started happening? Maybe fertiliser burn. Had any hot winds?
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Postby taffyman » Fri Nov 09, 2007 7:23 pm

Leah, over-watering can cause the leaf margins to go brown and so can a constant strong breeze or draught. I'd tend to think it's over-watering. If you poke your finger deep into the soil, it should come out just moist not wet. Don't forget as well, there will be a lot more moisture at the bottom of the pot than at the top - and I'd say your roots are down to the bottom of your pot already judging by the height of your tree. Have a look at the drain holes, maybe poke your finger in there as well - does it look and feel very wet inside? If it does, then cut down on the watering. Only water when the top 3-5 cm of soil feels fairly dry on the finger. You won't be able to save those affected leaves, but I see there are new leaves coming through in various places, so you can leave the affected ones there if you wish - they'll fall off on their own eventually, or you could clip them all off and the tree should put out a new set in a fairly short time at this time of the year. If you choose to clip them off, do so at the base of the actual leaf, not the base of the petiole (stem) because that's where the new leaves will sprout from, and if you cut close to the branch you could run the risk of damaging the dormant buds. The petioles will fall off after a week or so of their own accord.
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Postby lmrk » Sat Nov 10, 2007 11:23 am

Thanks a bunch Guzzi and Taffy. Unfortunately, all my plants get heaps of wind - being up high it's really hard to avoid as there's no shelter. The others aren't showing any "wind stress" if that's the right word :wink: (I've heard that Chinese Elm's are particularly susceptible to wind stress, but mine is growing out of control :shock: ), so I'm probably over watering it. I will repot it today with better draining mix.

Thanks for the tip about cutting the leaves off at the leaf and not the petiole Taffy - didn't know that!

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