Answer: Sweet Pea Shrub is not prone to any particular disease problems so it's difficult to say what may have caused the symptoms. To determine whether or not it is still alive you can gently scrape one of the branches with your thumbnail to look for green tissue just beneath the bark. If there's green tissue, the branch still has life; if the tissue is brown, it's dead. Keep scraping lower and lower down on the plant until you find live material. If you do, prune off all the dead stems and branches to encourage new growth. If you find nothing but dead material, the plant is gone and should be removed from the garden. Since there are no diseases specific to Polygala, the problem may be due to a root problem - poorly draining soils or soils that are kept too wet can cause root rot. If the plant is dead, dig it up and inspect the root system. Mushy roots are a sure indication of over-saturation. Wish I could offer more positive information!
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