The Q&A Archives: Why are the leaves on my Golden Privet wilting this year?

Question: I have a beautiful Golden Privet that is almost 4 years old. It has looked wonderful all the previous years. This spring, most of the leaves on it are very wilty? Why would this be and what should I do to help it out? Thank you so much for your help!

Answer: Based on your description I am not certain what is happening with your golden privet, however it is possible that some late hard freezes/rapidly oscillating temperatures may have damaged the foliage either as buds or possibly after it began to emerge. Or, it may be suffering a pest or disease problem. Privets are occasionally subject to anthracnose (although less likely in a dry spring), twig blight and canker, and some others which can cause a wilty look. This type of problem is difficult to diagnose long distance. I would suggest you consult with your local county extension and/or professionally trained and certified nurseryman to see if they can diagnose it for you. They may appreciate a photo of the overall plant along with closeups of the affected foliage, and possibly a freshly cut sample kept cool and enclosed in a clear plastic bag. If it is something that requires a chemical control, your county extension will have the most up to date information on what to use and how/when is best to apply it. I hope it is nothing too serious.

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