The Q&A Archives: Hakuro Nishiki Willow

Question: I planted 4 bushes last week and one bush is mostly brown now. One other bush also has some brown leaves. Is the bush dying or is this normal. Also the rabbits have taken a liking to one of the other healthy bush. What can I do to keep the rabbits away from it. Thank you for your help

Answer: Transplant stress can really take a toll on new shrubs. Since you've recently planted your Nishiki Willows I think you are seeing a combination of transplant stress and perhaps some sunscald on the new leaves, or symptoms of overwatering. As soon as the roots become established the plants should perk right up and when new growth appears you can prune back the damaged plant parts. Water your willows deeply once or twice a week, but be sure the soil is allowed to dry out a bit between waterings. Overly saturated soils can actually suffocate plant roots. As for the bunny damage, the best way to prevent that is with a temporary barrier such as a chicken wire cylinder around the plant. As your plants mature they will be less attractive to bunny nibbling, and any nibbling they do won't harm the plant. So, barriers for the plants until they grow up a bit more, and deep watering once or twice a week are what I would suggest for your willows. Enjoy your garden!

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