Hibiscus forum: What's happening to the leaves?

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Buffalo, NY
SomeDudeAtHome
May 16, 2020 10:28 AM CST
My wife and I bought 2 hibiscus plants on 5/7. They were looking great up until we transplanted them into an urn. The urns are only an inch or two larger than the pots and were filled with compost soil bought at a a local hardware store. I'm in Western NY so zone 6a I believe. We've had a lot of rain the past couple days but the urns have the plug pulled so they drain. Prior to planting them this past Saturday they spent the nights indoors cause it was cold and were moved outside in the afternoon for some sun. The locations of both they get a pretty good amount of sun. Is this chlorosis? Is it lack of magnesium?
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Name: Luis
Hurst, TX (Zone 8a)
Dog Lover Region: Texas Salvias Roses
luis_pr
May 20, 2020 12:51 AM CST
I would research if there are pests eating the surface of the leaves during the day or night. It almost looks like powdery mildew but, the top of the leaves is maybe being eaten by something, usually worms, slugs, etc. Maybe with a somewhat potent magnifier lens you might be able to tell if it looks like the top of the leaf is being eaten. I could not tell if the bottom part of the leaves had any pests or if they were similarly damaged. Aphids can also attack the leaves but you would normally see them in large groups during the day and there were none in the pictures.

Can you provide more information? How much water/sun is it getting? I see a very large number of fertilizer pellets. It probably came with fertilizer pellets. Have you fertilize it since you bought it? What fertilizer did you use (NPK Ratio and how often is it applied) and about how much fertilizer did you apply? Any idea how much rainfall fell during the last couple of day? Are talking 1-2" or 4-5" or ??? Just trying to get a feel for what may have happened if it got a lot of rain.

When hibiscus are deficient in magnesium, the leaves lose their gloss and their dark green color. The youngest leaves at the tips of each branch still look green and shiny, but lower leaves get yellower and less glossy. A telltale sign of magnesium deficiency is lower yellow leaves with dark green veins.

The problem seems to affect the older and lower (sun?) leaves for some reason. Those are closer to the ground where pests may climb to get there.
[Last edited by luis_pr - May 21, 2020 10:12 AM (+)]
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Buffalo, NY
SomeDudeAtHome
May 20, 2020 6:05 PM CST
Luis,

Thanks for the response. I'd say we got around an inch of rain the past couple days. My wife sprinkled the Miracle Grow plant food that is common in all hardware stores on everything.

I cannot see any bugs climbing on the leaves, top or bottom. It also doesn't feel like anything when touching the leaves. Not powdery or mildewy feeling. I guess it feels like a leaf in the fall that's getting that dry crispy feeling. Another member in a different post mentioned sunburn. I'm hoping that's all it is since they went from greenhouse to our house being moved outside while it was warm to completely outside. They're definitely getting more sun now than before. I'll keep an eye out for pests.
Name: Luis
Hurst, TX (Zone 8a)
Dog Lover Region: Texas Salvias Roses
luis_pr
May 21, 2020 10:11 AM CST
Yes, too much sun "can" be the problem, that is why asked how much sun it had. Many of those plants are developed under wholesaler greenhouses, whose leaves are not quite exposed to direct sunlight there so when you bring them home, they leaves are shocked and need to gradually "acclimate". Most times, they can go from the plant nursery to your patio but sometimes they pout. Ironic as this hibiscus can normally handle full sun. I had several hedges of tropical hibiscus in the Caribbean as well as hardy and Rose of Sharon Hibiscuses here in Texas and they never complained. But yes, they can.

Good to know there are no pests. You will need to learn which pests are now common in Buffalo. Mealy buds for example, normally start showing up at the end of May and in June.

When pests eat the top, you can "see" with a lens that one part that is green has been eaten but the texture of the leaf feels normal if you pass your hand through the leaf. When it is PM, you can pass your fingers through the gray/white fungi and some of it sticks to your fingers.
Buffalo, NY
SomeDudeAtHome
May 27, 2020 10:26 AM CST
Thank you for your insight Luis I will keep it all in mind. I think I know what you mean with the pests on the leaves. Our rose bush gets that kind of look to it on some leaves that I read is from a pest.

kathysaurob
Jun 8, 2020 11:37 AM CST
I have a double flower beautiful hibiscus. The leaves look kind of dusty. They are not shiny. It gets plenty of buds, but what happens is one bud will bloom to a beautiful double flower and the rest of the buds will just die and fall off. I;m not sure what is wrong with it.could this be bug related? Should I spray a vinegar, water and dish deterg solution on the leaves? I have a feeling one problem may be when planting it. The directions on the attached label said to plant it as deep but leaving about 1 inch of the root ball not covered. That was hard for me to figure out. When i was done, i had more of an inch exposed so I just raised up the dirt level around it. I also used in the water before placing the plant in the hole was something i bought in the store so it would not go into shock from the transplanting. I also fed it with rose feed that said you can use on any flowering plant. Could my plant be lacking an ingredient such as Iron, or magnesium, or should I did it up and re plant it? I can return it to Lowes and get another one, but I'm stubborn and I want to do whatever I need to the solve the problem myself before I decide to return it.
Thank you,
Kathy
Name: Luis
Hurst, TX (Zone 8a)
Dog Lover Region: Texas Salvias Roses
luis_pr
Jun 8, 2020 1:54 PM CST
Dusty could be a sign of powdery mildew. Can you post pictures?

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