Hello. This is Debbie. I have a very large camellia hedge - with the attached leaves which look very sick

Could you please identify this and offer a solution?

yates

15 October 2021 02:21 PM

It is normal that the new growth of Camellia is in red colour, however, it the leaves are thickening up, the tree might be affected by 

Camellia leaf gall, which is caused by the fungus Exobasidium camillae, and only affects camellias, so there is no concern with it spreading to other landscape plants. If left alone, eventually the thickened leaf will rupture and whitish fungal spores will be released. Eventually the entire leaf becomes hardened and brown.

Treatment is simple-prune off and dispose of the affected growth in the trash (in a closed plastic bag to avoid spreading the disease) as soon as you notice it. Do not compost infected leaves. The rest of the plant will not require treatment as the infection is contained to the affected leaves. To avoid infection, always rake up fallen leaves, and try to keep foliage dry.

Preventive fungicides applied at bud break can prevent camellia leaf gall, but the disease is so low-impact and easy to treat that the time and expense is usually unwarranted unless there is a history of extensive infection.

Topics: Flowers and Ornamentals Issues: Diseases