Olive pale leaves

ConorDash

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Hello,

Over winter my olive developed quite pale leaves, see pic.
7F5711DA-C1F9-4D0C-81DF-9F48D9F4B8A1.jpeg
I think these leaves must have been present from last year but over winter it’s just slowly discoloured..

it’s currently getting good sun but as it’s an olive it won’t start actively growing till we are in to summer..

Is this something to worry about? Id say it was chlorosis, but according to online research it’s not straight forward to resolve so I’m unsure how to, if it even needs to be resolved, perhaps it’ll resolve itself. Most leaves are fine, just these long shoots which have this.

if anyone’s any advice, I’d appreciate it :)
 

Shibui

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What have you been feeding your olive?
Chlorosis of newer leaves usually indicates deficiency of one of the immobile elements - Iron or Manganese. Yellow older leaves indicates deficiency of one of the elements that the plants can move around - N and Mg - they take from the older leaves and add it to new leaves to survive.
It looks like the symptoms are all on newer leaves so it is likely your tree doesn't have enough iron. This can be caused by either a straight out deficiency or by alkaline soil making the iron that is present unavailable to the roots.
Usual treatment is to add chelated iron or Iron sulphate but it is also worth checking the soil pH to see if something (your water?) has made it too alkaline.
Acid fertiliser can help when soils are alkaline.
Occasionally some warm climate plants just go yellow in winter when the roots just cannot absorb nutrients. They usually pick up again when weather warms up.

It may take a while to respond to treatment while the weather is still cool.
 

ConorDash

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What have you been feeding your olive?
Chlorosis of newer leaves usually indicates deficiency of one of the immobile elements - Iron or Manganese. Yellow older leaves indicates deficiency of one of the elements that the plants can move around - N and Mg - they take from the older leaves and add it to new leaves to survive.
It looks like the symptoms are all on newer leaves so it is likely your tree doesn't have enough iron. This can be caused by either a straight out deficiency or by alkaline soil making the iron that is present unavailable to the roots.
Usual treatment is to add chelated iron or Iron sulphate but it is also worth checking the soil pH to see if something (your water?) has made it too alkaline.
Acid fertiliser can help when soils are alkaline.
Occasionally some warm climate plants just go yellow in winter when the roots just cannot absorb nutrients. They usually pick up again when weather warms up.

It may take a while to respond to treatment while the weather is still cool.
This is highly likely. It is potted in a clay molar substrate, no organics, so i think this means it is highly alkaline.
It has not been fertilised since last year, i tend to start fertiliser when active growth starts however for the Olive i put the organic fert pellets on its surface, at same time as others, few weeks ago.
I use Green Dream, organic. https://www.kaizenbonsai.com/green-dream-original-100-organic-fertiliser

"Slow release compound fertiliser with an analysis of N.6% - P.5% - K.7%. With added trace elements. Iron, Manganese, Zinc, Copper, Boron, Molybdenum."
But this has only just been applied.
Also I use a chemical fertiliser in waterings, from time to time. This contains seaweed extract, specifically for Iron content, helping with greener leaves.
I haven't started this yet.

So simply, once the deficiency has been balanced (which i believe I am doing now with my approach, do you?) will the existing leaves correct themselves?

Thanks for your help,
 

Shibui

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So simply, once the deficiency has been balanced (which i believe I am doing now with my approach, do you?) will the existing leaves correct themselves?
Good question. I'm not absolutely sure but my inclination is that they should green up when the plant can get some nutrients to them. If I'm wrong about that it hardly matters because they all seem to be on long, sacrifice branches that will be cut off eventually?

Definitely check the pH and make corrections if possible to prevent a recur next year. I'd also up the fert, especially later in summer so the plants can pick up enough nutrients for healthy late growth. There is little point fertilising trees that are dormant. Nutrients are just wasted when the roots can't take them up. Compounded slow release can be used a bit early as it takes time for them to release nutrients. I'd be checking how long the Green Dream releases nutrients for. Ad says it needs to be applied every few weeks. Maybe the trees were hungry late last season and should have had a few applications later for the autumn growth?
Seaweed extracts are notoriously unreliable in analysis. Nutrients depend on time of year, location and lots more so each batch can be very different. They usually give 'approximate' or 'typical' analysis for fertilisers containing seaweed.
Some sources say that Chelated iron can be absorbed through the leaves as well as roots so is very quick acting in cases of deficiency.
 

ConorDash

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Good question. I'm not absolutely sure but my inclination is that they should green up when the plant can get some nutrients to them. If I'm wrong about that it hardly matters because they all seem to be on long, sacrifice branches that will be cut off eventually?

Definitely check the pH and make corrections if possible to prevent a recur next year. I'd also up the fert, especially later in summer so the plants can pick up enough nutrients for healthy late growth. There is little point fertilising trees that are dormant. Nutrients are just wasted when the roots can't take them up. Compounded slow release can be used a bit early as it takes time for them to release nutrients. I'd be checking how long the Green Dream releases nutrients for. Ad says it needs to be applied every few weeks. Maybe the trees were hungry late last season and should have had a few applications later for the autumn growth?
Seaweed extracts are notoriously unreliable in analysis. Nutrients depend on time of year, location and lots more so each batch can be very different. They usually give 'approximate' or 'typical' analysis for fertilisers containing seaweed.
Some sources say that Chelated iron can be absorbed through the leaves as well as roots so is very quick acting in cases of deficiency.
Correct, long sacrifice. Didnt quite get the right thickness last year so they just need... literally a few weeks of growth for the thickness. Olives take a while to start growing here and growing season is small but they sure do grow FAST when they do!

Yes you make a lot of good points, slow release so they can be applied earlier.. and it may say few weeks but in my experience of using it for 2-3 years, i only apply need to apply twice in the year.
Interesting about the chelated iron.. Good to know about seaweed, but every little helps. As its chemical and my substrate is all pretty much inorganic, the nutrients stay around for a few small amount of time. I could increase ratio of fert in the water to make up for it, but at least I wont be overdoing it!
 

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Every time I read one of these posts about balancing inherently unbalanced manufactured media, I thank my lucky stars that the question of growing mediums in bonsai is a widely accepted settled science. And yes, I am laughing at everyone who is trying to create the perfect replacement mix for ordinary top soil generally available at $3 a cubic foot out of the cheapest stuff on God's green earth, except in the end it's never cheaper, or better, or any other adjective that might be cited. Everything that's missing has to be provided, timely, and all you gain is a characteristic to substitute excellent draining for good judgement in water habits. Instead, you get a formula that has to be f**ked with every season of the year. Congrats on job well done!
 

ConorDash

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Every time I read one of these posts about balancing inherently unbalanced manufactured media, I thank my lucky stars that the question of growing mediums in bonsai is a widely accepted settled science. And yes, I am laughing at everyone who is trying to create the perfect replacement mix for ordinary top soil generally available at $3 a cubic foot out of the cheapest stuff on God's green earth, except in the end it's never cheaper, or better, or any other adjective that might be cited. Everything that's missing has to be provided, timely, and all you gain is a characteristic to substitute excellent draining for good judgement in water habits. Instead, you get a formula that has to be f**ked with every season of the year. Congrats on job well done!
I tend to accept that my tree will do what it does best, no point forcing one way or the other. It will balance itself, depending on the environment it is put in to. We can help it along, where possible :)

My real question is how many particles of clay molar substrate should I use for my Olive, compared to how many for my Elm! If I knew that, i could solve all the problems.... Lol.
 

ConorDash

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Well this kinda sorted itself, it was fertilised as i usually would with organic pellets, and now also chemical fert in every watering. Its just starting to move now, with growth. Its leaves are filling out too and reducing this "problem". Although it has had a good prune, so mostly removed any way.

 

Cadillactaste

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When I see things that yellow...I usually put a pinch of epsom salts on the pot...in case there is a neutrient block. But in your case...you hadn't fertilized. You pruned much of the yellowing foliage off. But if you find it doesn't green back up nicely. I would add a pinch to the pot.
 

Starfox

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Is it in pure Molar Clay?
If so then it's probably holding too much water for the Olive over winter. That can lead to deficiencies like this. I'd keep up the ferts and even try the epsom salts too and hopefully it keeps perking up.
My real question is how many particles of clay molar substrate should I use for my Olive
I would use much less of it especially in a UK climate, maybe a third of your mix. I like using more, but it gets very hot and windy in summer so I need that moisture retention for some of my trees. However some of them are thirsty trees, Bougies and Olives prefer it drier so now I only use about a third of it it my mix for those species.
Honestly though it's a learning process and my climate and trees are probably very different to yours so it may differ, only thing I can say is the Molar Clay seemingly holds lots of water so if using lots of it you need to cut your watering back over winter.
 

maroun.c

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Far from an expert on plant diseases but we have a lot of olives and also have very alkaline soil and water. I get white deposits on pots...
Never had such an issue on olives or other trees. Will try to check soil ph on my olives to confirm.
 

BobbyLane

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Is it in pure Molar Clay?
If so then it's probably holding too much water for the Olive over winter. That can lead to deficiencies like this. I'd keep up the ferts and even try the epsom salts too and hopefully it keeps perking up.


I would use much less of it especially in a UK climate, maybe a third of your mix. I like using more, but it gets very hot and windy in summer so I need that moisture retention for some of my trees. However some of them are thirsty trees, Bougies and Olives prefer it drier so now I only use about a third of it it my mix for those species.
Honestly though it's a learning process and my climate and trees are probably very different to yours so it may differ, only thing I can say is the Molar Clay seemingly holds lots of water so if using lots of it you need to cut your watering back over winter.
tbf mate if you want to avoid any tree staying too wet over winter just stick it underneath a bench or in a green house.

it also gets hot n windy in the UK.

"need to cut your watering back over winter."

thats pretty much standard procedure for most trees in pots.
i rarely water my trees over winter. olives and yews especially do not like to be cold n wet over winter.
from my own experience in the UK climate, i couldnt keep trees in 100% molar clay, it dries out far too quickly, for olives it will be fine though.

Conah at next repotting i think i mentioned to you already to try kaizen 3 for mediterranean trees. not much else you can do, tree looks healthy anyway, i saw the long extensions you recently cut off.
just carry on doing what youre doing
 
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Starfox

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"need to cut your watering back over winter."

thats pretty much standard procedure for most trees in pots.

Yes, this is the main point. But to do this correctly you should have an idea of how the substrate works and what the tree needs. It's an Olive, one thing they don't need much of is water and Molar holds on to an awful lot of it. Too much if using 100 percent of it for an Olive and while it may be alright to get through the summer I'd personally want it in a better mix asap at next repot if it was mine.

I do think that Kaizen mix looks better and would certainly allow you to water more thoroughly, the tree would perk up quite rapidly with that.
 

ConorDash

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Yes, this is the main point. But to do this correctly you should have an idea of how the substrate works and what the tree needs. It's an Olive, one thing they don't need much of is water and Molar holds on to an awful lot of it. Too much if using 100 percent of it for an Olive and while it may be alright to get through the summer I'd personally want it in a better mix asap at next repot if it was mine.

I do think that Kaizen mix looks better and would certainly allow you to water more thoroughly, the tree would perk up quite rapidly with that.
tbf mate if you want to avoid any tree staying too wet over winter just stick it underneath a bench or in a green house.

it also gets hot n windy in the UK.

"need to cut your watering back over winter."

thats pretty much standard procedure for most trees in pots.
i rarely water my trees over winter. olives and yews especially do not like to be cold n wet over winter.
from my own experience in the UK climate, i couldnt keep trees in 100% molar clay, it dries out far too quickly, for olives it will be fine though.

Conah at next repotting i think i mentioned to you already to try kaizen 3 for mediterranean trees. not much else you can do, tree looks healthy anyway, i saw the long extensions you recently cut off.
just carry on doing what youre doing
Appreciate the responses guys, but I feel the horse has bolted on this.

Yes, definitely know the molar clay is not ideal for the olive however, referring to my Olive thread for this tree, it has shown great strength and vigor, all the time being potted in this molar clay (100%) for 3 years. However, even though it works, I am resolved to the Mediterranean-like mix from Kaizen, and will be using that next time, for sure, it comes too highly recommended and makes sense given what we know about Olives.
Yes, agree Bobby, I do not water much over winter + Olives especially do not like water. Wet and cold combined are terrible for Olive, and the olive moves in and out of the shed during winter, to keep it from getting too wet. I have reread the Kaizen blog on Olives WAY too many times, even posted a thread on it, here for others.
The olive does drink a lot in heat though, currently watering it daily, with most of my other trees too. When it starts growing, it grows fast and drinks a lot. It is heavily fertilized currently, but next year I reckon i will slow down with fert.
My last post was just to say there is no longer an issue, all is good.
 

ConorDash

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Is it in pure Molar Clay?
If so then it's probably holding too much water for the Olive over winter. That can lead to deficiencies like this. I'd keep up the ferts and even try the epsom salts too and hopefully it keeps perking up.


I would use much less of it especially in a UK climate, maybe a third of your mix. I like using more, but it gets very hot and windy in summer so I need that moisture retention for some of my trees. However some of them are thirsty trees, Bougies and Olives prefer it drier so now I only use about a third of it it my mix for those species.
Honestly though it's a learning process and my climate and trees are probably very different to yours so it may differ, only thing I can say is the Molar Clay seemingly holds lots of water so if using lots of it you need to cut your watering back over winter.
Also, this was just a joke buddy. Like asking, how many baked beans do you have on your dinner? or how many crisps do you want in your packet? (chips for non-english).
Was a joke, being overly silly and asking how many individual particles :).
 
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