The Q&A Archives: Red Tip Shrubs

Question: Can you tell me what is wrong with my red tip bushes and what can I do to help them live and have leaves again? We had a bad hurricane and after that the leaves began to fall off. We thought it was because of the storm and the salt water from the storm. The leaves did have spots on them before the fell off. We hoped the leaves would come back last spring but they didn't. The plant is still green when you break a stem off.

Answer: Sounds like your Photinia's went through quite an ordeal. If the stems are still green, it indicates the plants are still alive, and will probably begin to grow again once they've overcome the shock. You can help encourage the growth of new stems and leaves by pruning your shrubs when the weather warms up in the spring. Photinias are prone to both a physiological leaf spot and a bacterial leaf spot. Both of these problems can cause leaves to drop, so you may be dealing with disease as well as environmental problems. Pruning, and then removing all of the debris from the garden, will help your shrubs develop new, healthy leaf and stem growth.

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