The Q&A Archives: Magnificent brunsfelsia

Question: When I received my plant last year, it was full of leaves and blossoms. During the winter months the leaves dropped off. After a few weeks the leaves started to come out and also the budding blossoms. The blossoms are plentiful but the leaves are very scarce. The plant is prettier with the plentiiful leaves. What can I do or should do? It is planted in shade area protected from wind.

Answer: Brunfelsia normally drops its leaves in winter but produces lots of healthy new foliage in the spring. It's a good sign that your plant is flowering, but not such a good sign that the leaves are sparse. This can happen if the plant is overwatered or if it is over-fertilized. If you haven't fed, don't.... As for watering, try watering deeply but less frequently. Usually one inch per week is all the plant will need, applied slowly so it has a chance to trickle down and wet the entire root mass. Hope making these adjustments will encourage lots of healthy new foliage. In the meantime, enjoy those blossoms!

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