En EspaŅol
Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Mr. Smarty Plants - Leaf problems on Cherry Laurel in Boulder City, NV

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - January 29, 2011

From: Boulder City, NV
Region: Rocky Mountain
Topic: Diseases and Disorders
Title: Leaf problems on Cherry Laurel in Boulder City, NV
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I live in Boulder City, Nevada and have 4 cherry laurel trees. I'm having a hard time with brown leaves and loss of leaves. How much water should I give them each season? Temps run from 28 degrees to 115 degrees. Any help would be useful. Thanks

ANSWER:

From this USDA Plant Profile map, you will see that Prunus caroliniana (Cherry laurel) does not grow natively in Nevada at all. This is probably your first clue to the answer to your problem. The second clue is in this section on Growing Conditions from our website page on this plant:

"Water Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Cold Tolerant: yes
Soil Description: Moist, deep, loamy, well-drained soils. Clay Loam, Medium Loam, Sandy Loam, Sandy
Conditions Comments: Likes the moist, well-drained soils of its natural range. Prolonged saturation can cause root rot, particularly in clay soils. Shallow, nutrient-poor, rocky soils can cause chlorosis and heat stress."

We would guess that you are trying to grow a plant that needs acidic soils in alkaline soils, and that your environment is causing chlorosis and heat stress. There is very little you can do to force a plant to grow where it does not belong, but you might try mulching the trees with a good quality shredded bark mulch. This will protect the roots from extremes of heat and cold and, as it decomposes, it will slowly add a little acidity and the possibility of better drainage to the soil. In terms of water each season, that depends more on whether the trees are better established or relatively new in the ground. If you want to try to maintain the trees instead of replacing them, we would suggest that you water at least once a week by sticking a hose down in the soil and letting it dribble slowly until water appears on the surface.

 

More Diseases and Disorders Questions

Juniper-apple rust galls
April 24, 2010 - I have Red Cedar trees in my yard. I have just noticed something that looks like a reddish brown squid-like bloom about the size of a small orange. Is this normal or is it a fungus?
view the full question and answer

Treatment of mealy bugs on house plants
April 19, 2005 - I have some house plants that have a "fungi" that has appeared and spread from one to the others. I believe it is killing the plants. It is a white fuzz the is sticky to the touch. when i whip it...
view the full question and answer

Mountain Laurel slowly dying in San Antonio, TX
December 26, 2012 - My Texas Mountain Laurel seems to be dying in a slow unusual manner. Over the past two weeks the leaves have been turning yellow and falling off starting with the south facing side of my multi-tru...
view the full question and answer

Problem with unknown tree in Austin, Texas
July 23, 2013 - Have recently moved to Austin, Texas and have a tree in my backyard that has been dropping leaves and one major branch appears to be dead. That branch has hard rust colored sap circles (about penny si...
view the full question and answer

Stressed live oaks from Lakeway TX
August 19, 2013 - I have some Live Oaks who appear to be stressed (Ball Moss is becoming very prevalent on some of them) during the drought in Central TX. How often and how long should I water them? Thank you very much...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center