The Q&A Archives: Lamium Problems

Question: I'm not sure if I have a pest problem or a fungal disease. My lamium is planted under a pine tree and is mostly shaded. One half is doning fine and continues to flower, while the other half is wilted, some leaves are turning brown, and appears straggly with exposed stems that lie flat. I have sprayed for pests and fungus, but have not seen any results. Do you have any ideas or suggestions that I may try?

Answer: Lamium is generally a trouble-free groundcover so I expect that it is showing stress from cultural problems rather than insects or diseases. Soils under pine trees is generally dry and often on the acidic side. Unless you amended the soil prior to planting, the lamium roots might be having trouble getting enough moisture. A second problem with groundcover under trees, especially fibrous rooted trees like pines, is that the mats of roots tend to rob the soil of nutrients as well as moisture, making it difficult for other plants to thrive. I'd dig the sickly lamium out, amend the soil with a few inches of organic matter, and plant healthy starts of lamium. You can take cuttings from the thriving lamium on the other side of the tree and transplant them into the newly amended bed. Keep the plants watered well until they become established. Good luck with your lamium!

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