Gardening professional JJ offers recommendation for discoloured leaves


Salt Rock’s Lauren Addison writes
My star jasmines were in bloom, but I lost at least six plants over a couple of months last year. The leaves, which were supposed to be green, turned nice red before they fell off or dried up. I thought it might be because they were too dry in winter, but the problem persisted last summer. I replaced the ones I lost with healthy new plants, but I see the new ones also have leaves that are turning red. I’ve sprayed ants and red spiders that I thought might be the problem, but to no avail. Any advice?

JJ answers Yes, red leaves are usually a sign of a lack of water and the soil may dry out too quickly. Plants from the nursery usually come in a bag of high-quality potting soil. As the roots develop and grow past this potting soil, they often come into contact with sandy soil, which causes them to dry out faster. If this happens in summer and the plants with underdeveloped root systems are exposed to excessive heat, you will see the negative effects sooner. Replace the soil, add compost and transplant. When transplanting, cut off about 20% of the plant to give the roots a greater advantage. Fertilize every two months with a nitrogen fertilizer such as 7: 1: 3.

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