Problem with passion fruit trunk

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Problem with passion fruit trunk

Postby Getafix » Tue Apr 09, 2013 9:14 pm

I've got a seedling passion fruit that has done fantastically well since i bought it about 3 or 4 years ago with plenty of fruit. The last season wasn't great though for a number of reasons, but one thing that did worry me was that the base of the plant seems to be rotting away

ImageUploadedByTapatalk1365505578.981609.jpg
ImageUploadedByTapatalk1365505797.930785.jpg


I've recently given it a very heavy prune and it seems to be responding well, but I'm wondering if I'm wasting my time and am better off getting ready to replace it?

Any thoughts on what might be causing the problem, if there is anything that can be done about it, and if I do remove the plant, would it be unwise to plant another passion fruit in the same spot?
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Re: Problem with passion fruit trunk

Postby Pam » Wed Apr 10, 2013 6:49 am

That looks like collar rot to me, Getafix , usually caused by having mulch too close to the stem. If you can find even a mm continuous vertical strip of healthy bark, it may have a hope, otherwise, you're probably looking at having to replace it some time soon. I believe passionfruit are past their best after a few years anyway, so it's not as big a catastrophe as it might otherwise be.
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Re: Problem with passion fruit trunk

Postby Getafix » Fri Apr 12, 2013 10:12 pm

Yes, you're probably right Pam...a bit strange though as I haven't mulched it for a while...some of its own leaves have fallen into the bed so that may have contributed.
They are short lived but I had hoped to get at least 5 years out of it. It's still putting on plenty of new growth though, so may be it will last a bit longer yet.
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Re: Problem with passion fruit trunk

Postby nelson castro » Tue Apr 16, 2013 4:46 pm

Phytophthora cinnamomi is known to cause root rot, stem canker, wilt, damping off, leaf blight and fruit rot in passionfruit.

Improving soil drainage can greatly reduce the risk of Phytophthora infection. In other crops, high organic matter content in the soil have been shown to suppress infection.
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Re: Problem with passion fruit trunk

Postby HortMaster » Wed Apr 17, 2013 1:19 pm

nelson castro wrote:Phytophthora cinnamomi is known to cause root rot, stem canker, wilt, damping off, leaf blight and fruit rot in passionfruit.

Improving soil drainage can greatly reduce the risk of Phytophthora infection. In other crops, high organic matter content in the soil have been shown to suppress infection.


Firstly Phytophthora cinnamomi is only one of around 350 known species of Phytophthora. From my understanding most strands prohibit the plant from being able to use available Phosphorus, which then results in the conditions you listed here. You would first need to establish it is Phytophthora by soil testing. If it were, in this case, you would treat it with phosphoric acid. (either foliar spray or injection, diluted to manufacturer specs) But yeah like Pam said you only get 5 years out of a passion fruit if you're lucky. After 3 they're usually past their prime.
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Re: Problem with passion fruit trunk

Postby HortMaster » Wed Apr 17, 2013 1:23 pm

Plus i can tell you that improving drainage will not reduce the risk of infection. Perth is for the most part a sand pit and we have Phytophthora everywhere.
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