The Q&A Archives: Yellow Leaves On New Dappled Willow

Question: My new Dappled Willow has had a rough start. Prior to planting, the new pink growth was touched by light frost and a good portion of the new leaves have turned brown and fallen off. It seems to be doing ok but now the leaves in the center of the plant are beginning to turn yellow. We've had an incredibly wet spring/early summer. Is the plant getting too much water or does it need something else? Also where the new growth leaves dropped off, will it get new leaves in the same spot. I have not cut off new growth as I didn't want any branching to occur to ruin the airy look of the plant. Help!

Answer: Salix integra 'Hakura Nishiki'is a willow and like all willows is very happy in moist to even wet soil, so I do not think excess rain would have had an adverse effect in that sense. This group of plants however is subject to numerous foliage problems including fungal infections, and the damp weather could encourage these to develop. In my experience, too, stressed plants (transplanting then frost) can be more likely to be attacked than more established vigorously growing plants. I would suggest you take a sample affected interior branch and possibly a few photos to your county extension or to the nursery where you purchased the plant and see if they can identify the problem for certain and suggest steps to take next. I'm sorry I can't be more specific with a diagnosis long distance. Good luck with your shrub!

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