dieffenbachia - Knowledgebase Question

fairfax, Vi
Question by rohini_m_200
November 22, 2010
I have a Dieffenbachia in container under artificial lighting ( 2ft beneath from 100 watt fluorescent bulb). Though it is putting out new leaves, either the leaves have burnt tips and develop brown spot similar to burn spot on the tender young leaves. Whats wrong. i really dont want to loose this plant.I water if the soil dries up and have fertilized it 2 weeks back.


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Answer from NGA
November 22, 2010

0

Dieffenbachia is susceptible to brown leaf tips, mostly due to dry indoor air but sometimes due to chemicals in the tap water. The burned looking spots on the leaf surfaces might indicate an insect population on the undersides of the leaves, a bacterial or fungal disease, or might actually be "sunburn" from the artificial light. While fluorescent lights put out negligible heat, if the leaves have water drops on them, the light can magnify and actually cause burned areas. Since I can't inspect the leaves to confirm or rule out any of these conditions, it's difficult for me to make suggestions for control. You might want to take a leaf sample to your local cooperative extension office for positive diagnosis. Trained staff can inspect the leaf under a microscope and identify the problem, then make suggestions for control. Contact Virginia Cooperative Extension, 12011 Government Center Parkway
Suite 1050, Fairfax, VA 22035-1111. Phone: (703) 324-5369.

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