Lavender Star dropped leaves

Dane Kofoed

Seedling
Messages
9
Reaction score
2
Location
Muskoka ONTARIO, CANADA
USDA Zone
5a
This starter Lavender Star tree was purchased from a bonsai nursery in late October in Toronto Canada.
Brought it home, watered moderately (weekly or slightly more), misted a little in between, placed near a window with NO direct sunlight. The leaves slowly dried up entirely. It has been placed under grow lights once wilting was noticed ..
Is it dehydrated, diseased, overwatered, under lit?
Will it bud again this spring? Or will it bud under lights indoors ? Thanks
 

Attachments

GrimLore

Bonsai Nut alumnus... we miss you
Messages
8,502
Reaction score
7,360
Location
South East PA
USDA Zone
6b
Dunno, I have two. One is growing great the other is defoliating as yours. Both in the same substrate, light, etc... @milehigh_7 can probably help here as he is a grower :)

Grimmy
 

shinmai

Chumono
Messages
552
Reaction score
1,090
Location
Milwaukee WI
USDA Zone
5b
A couple of thoughts based on my limited experience: if the leaves on the underside of the branches turn yellow before falling off, it is a virtually certain sign that [a] it's over-watered, it's not draining adequately, or [c] both. I have one that I repotted, in my ignorance, using a 'tropical' mix with way too much fine dirt. When I had the leaves turning yellow, I noted that the pot drained slowly. On a hunch, I left the tree wired in, tipped the pot on its side to get ride of the crappy soil as much as possible, and back-filled with my now go-to all inorganic mix. As the French musician said, Viola!! Problem solved.

The leaves dropping is most likely not iron chlorosis, because that condition is usually manifested in uniformly-yellowing leaves. Star flowers are iron-sensitive, though, so I would suggest making that part of your fertilizing routine. They also need acidic soil or substrate, and a fertilizer for acid-loving plants. Also, keep a close watch on your wire-when healthy they can grow very quickly, and you can end up with wires cutting into the bark in surprisingly short order.

Also, bear in mind that many semi-tropical or tropical trees will drop leaves after a change in setting or circumstances, sometimes three or four weeks later. This would, methinks, be consistent with the curled, but still green, look to the leaves in your picture. The fact that you have green growth budding is very positive.

The tree has a really cool shape. If it stays healthy, it looks like it could make a nice semi or full cascade. Best of luck.
 

Leo in N E Illinois

Imperial Masterpiece
Messages
7,090
Reaction score
12,615
Location
on the IL-WI border, a mile from ''da Lake''
USDA Zone
5b
Looks like it is sending out new buds now, which is good.

About watering, check soil moisture in more than one location in the pot. Water when needed, not on a schedule. When you water, take the pot to a sink and flood it with water, let drain, flood and drain a second time, then return to the light set up. If you water in place, by dribbling water into the pot, you are bound to have dry pockets in the mix. Bonsai soil has too much inorganic components to rely on capillary action to spread the water around. Key to good watering techniques is to get the media uniformly wet, then allow to dry to slightly damp, water again before any hint of leaves wilting.
 

Dane Kofoed

Seedling
Messages
9
Reaction score
2
Location
Muskoka ONTARIO, CANADA
USDA Zone
5a
Looks like it is sending out new buds now, which is good.

About watering, check soil moisture in more than one location in the pot. Water when needed, not on a schedule. When you water, take the pot to a sink and flood it with water, let drain, flood and drain a second time, then return to the light set up. If you water in place, by dribbling water into the pot, you are bound to have dry pockets in the mix. Bonsai soil has too much inorganic components to rely on capillary action to spread the water around. Key to good watering techniques is to get the media uniformly wet, then allow to dry to slightly damp, water again before any hint of leaves wilting.
This tree is potted in a finer soul than typical bonsai soil.. still apply the flood method?
 

Leo in N E Illinois

Imperial Masterpiece
Messages
7,090
Reaction score
12,615
Location
on the IL-WI border, a mile from ''da Lake''
USDA Zone
5b
This tree is potted in a finer soul than typical bonsai soil.. still apply the flood method?
Yes, particle size only changes watering frequently, not how to water. Yes, flood, even the finest soil needs to be flooded, then allowed to drain, then allowed to approach dryness. Water again when almost, but not quite completely dry. Before leaves wilt.

A coarse mix might need water daily. A medium mix, every other day, a fine mix maybe once a week. You need to use your finger to test moisture, and see how long it takes. Time will vary depending on weather, low humidity will dry quick.
 
Top Bottom