Rent Shop Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
1 rating

Monday - June 19, 2006

From: Toledo, OH
Region: Midwest
Topic: Diseases and Disorders
Title: Possible reasons for yellowing leaves in seedlings in Ohio
Answered by: Nan Hampton and Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

I have a problem with my seedlings. They start yellowing of one leaf then die. When I remove the leaf another one starts. I have photos. I have two differant seedling plants and they are experiencing the same thing. I have lost plants in the past this way. Who might test this leaf for the cause of this problem? I was thinking a school or a soil test lab. I have samples I have taken to test. I want to start a company growing violets and don't want to start a bunch of plants that die from infection. Any help would be great.

ANSWER:

If it is only the lower leaves that are yellowing and dying, this is a normal process that happens as the new leaves above them are added and treatment is not required. However, if yellowing and dying occurs with all the leaves, you do have a problem. One possibliity for the cause of the death of your seedlings is a condition called damping-off. This is caused by a fungus. Control for this disease involves regulating the moisture content of the soil to keep the fungus from thriving. You should provide good drainage for the seedlings and water them thoroughly—avoiding frequent sprinklings of the soil. Providing good air flow around the seedlings is also important. Additionally, it is a good idea to start your seedlings on pre-sterilized soil.

Your Ohio State University County Extension Agent can give you information on soil and tissue testing.

 

More Diseases and Disorders Questions

Need information about oak wilt and Shumard oak in Houston, Tx.
July 06, 2010 - I want to plant a Shumard red oak in my North Houston front yard, with two Nuttall oaks. I keep hearing about something call oak wilt. Is there something I can do to prevent this disease during the ...
view the full question and answer

Yellowing leaves
May 06, 2008 - What causes yellowing of native garden plant leaves?
view the full question and answer

Live oak bark splitting in Katy TX
October 03, 2011 - We have a 7 yr old live oak that looks like its bark is splitting open in branches and top leaves look wilted. If that sounds like oak wilt, do we need to have the tree removed? We live in a subdivisi...
view the full question and answer

Fungus type problem on native blackeyed susans in Ohio
August 20, 2008 - I have black eyed susans that have recently developed a black fungus type problem in the bottom and on the leaves. The flowers are now wilting and dying. What is this and how can I stop it from possib...
view the full question and answer

Desert Willow and Orchid tree with no upper leaves from Kerrville TX
May 30, 2013 - I have two 5 year old Desert Willows planted in my yard. This year only one has leaved out and blooming. The other is bare but the branches are not dead and it has new growth at the bottom. Do you kno...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.