What's wrong with my bougainvillea

Joyce2021

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Hi,

I got a bougainvillea per-bonsai this winter. It started growing leaves but the leaves on one side of the tree look burnt. The other side leaves are healthy. Does anyone know why this happens? How can I fix this?

Thank you for any suggestions!
 

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Carol 83

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I haven't. When I got it in December, it was in really bad soil. I have to replant it asap. I decided not to give fertilizer because of the new soil.

Should I fertilize it?
I always repot them in the hottest part of summer, but if the soil was really water retentive, it may have been necessary. Not sure about the burned looking leaves, but the others look chlorotic. A couple of doses of Mir-acid should clear that up.
 

ShadyStump

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I always repot them in the hottest part of summer, but if the soil was really water retentive, it may have been necessary. Not sure about the burned looking leaves, but the others look chlorotic. A couple of doses of Mir-acid should clear that up.
The leaves on the ones you sent me at work look similar. I was blaming it on still being in peat that's usually too wet in tiny pots. Planning to slip pot them all into 6" pots this week, but had meant to ask your thoughts. Work and such though.
What sort of fertilizer would you recommend?
Any other bougainvillea tips?
 

Joyce2021

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The leaves on the ones you sent me at work look similar. I was blaming it on still being in peat that's usually too wet in tiny pots. Planning to slip pot them all into 6" pots this week, but had meant to ask your thoughts. Work and such though.
What sort of fertilizer would you recommend?
Any other bougainvillea tips?
I just bought this one. I heard this brand is specialized in Bougainvillea fertilize.
 

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LittleDingus

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Hi,

I got a bougainvillea per-bonsai this winter. It started growing leaves but the leaves on one side of the tree look burnt. The other side leaves are healthy. Does anyone know why this happens? How can I fix this?

Thank you for any suggestions!

Looks like maybe a magnesium deficiency:


I find this a handy photo guide to the various mineral issues:


Maybe click through some of the other ones (at the bottom of the page) to familiarize yourself with some of the common symptoms.

Now, as to _why_? The symptom just means the plant can't transport the mineral it needs to where it is needed. Usually it's an uptake issue (roots) because there are no minerals or because of a soil issue. Soil issues can be watering...but can also be pH of the soil. Some elements cannot be absorbed if the pH is wrong.

When fertilizing...make sure you use a fertilizer with trace minerals. Mir-acid is a common one. I use epsom salts as a supplement on some of my plants as well.
 

ShadyStump

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I just bought this one. I heard this brand is specialized in Bougainvillea fertilize.
Thanks!
I know potting and soil are a big part of the issue, but if these don't do well I'll lose my students' attention and respective!😂
Teenagers; so fickle.
 

Joyce2021

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Looks like maybe a magnesium deficiency:


I find this a handy photo guide to the various mineral issues:


Maybe click through some of the other ones (at the bottom of the page) to familiarize yourself with some of the common symptoms.

Now, as to _why_? The symptom just means the plant can't transport the mineral it needs to where it is needed. Usually it's an uptake issue (roots) because there are no minerals or because of a soil issue. Soil issues can be watering...but can also be pH of the soil. Some elements cannot be absorbed if the pH is wrong.

When fertilizing...make sure you use a fertilizer with trace minerals. Mir-acid is a common one. I use epsom salts as a supplement on some of my plants as well.
Thank you so much!!!

I am being very careful with water and bought expensive bonsai soil for the plant. I am going to try the fertilizer. Hope it will save the plant.
Is this the fertilizer I should buy?
 

Carol 83

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What sort of fertilizer would you recommend?
Any other bougainvillea tips?
I have some Bougain, usually use it when the plants go back outside in the spring. But the Mir-acid should take care of any chlorosis and it's cheaper. When you repot the little ones, use really free draining soil. Overwatering seems to be the one thing they won't abide. If they drop their leaves, don't give up on them. They are sometimes dramatic, but will soon start growing again.
 

Joyce2021

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I have some Bougain, usually use it when the plants go back outside in the spring. But the Mir-acid should take care of any chlorosis and it's cheaper. When you repot the little ones, use really free draining soil. Overwatering seems to be the one thing they won't abide. If they drop their leaves, don't give up on them. They are sometimes dramatic, but will soon start growing again.
Hi Carol,

Is this the one you use? If not, could you please recommend a brand or share a link?

Really appreciate your help.
 

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ShadyStump

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I have some Bougain, usually use it when the plants go back outside in the spring. But the Mir-acid should take care of any chlorosis and it's cheaper. When you repot the little ones, use really free draining soil. Overwatering seems to be the one thing they won't abide. If they drop their leaves, don't give up on them. They are sometimes dramatic, but will soon start growing again.
Thanks! For now we're just going with regular generic potting soil, but I might trade that for succulent soil. They need to be able to manage on their own over a long weekend.
But just about anything will be better than the rotting peat they've been in for months.
 

Carol 83

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But just about anything will be better than the rotting peat they've been in for months.
Sorry. It was a mix of peat, sand and vermiculite someone suggested to me for cuttings.
 

ShadyStump

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Sorry. It was a mix of peat, sand and vermiculite someone suggested to me for cuttings.
It's the conditions, not the mix. They're all covered in algae, insufficient air circulation, ambient air temp of maybe 68.
Hoping to have a better setup soon, and just got a new line on a possible grant.

But I'm not trying to hijack someone else's thread. Hoping to repot tomorrow, and all should be better soon.
 

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