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17 messages
10/04/2013 at 21:58
I have a standard red Robin at the front of my house. It out out very little grown last year and the leaves look marbled with speckles and I was to give it a boost. Any ideas. I have had this in a pot for 5 years, I then planted into the ground about a year and a half ago, I loosened the roots and put plenty of compost in the hole when planting as its clay! I also dug sand,grit and compost into the bed to improve the heavy heavy clay. How can I give it a boost and pick it up. In the bed under this tree I planted bedding plants last year. This standard red robin is now about 4ft tall but the round head is probably only a sphere about 2ft across.
10/04/2013 at 22:22
Hiya red dalia
You didn't mention fertiliser. In my experience....grown two and another for a friend.....they don't like cultivation around their roots.
If mine, I,would give it a generous solid feed, preferably organic, water it in and then mulch.
In addition I would lightly prune to buds.....waiting for them to become red shoots....all over the bush.
I apply a seaweed spray on any troubled or sickly looking plants.....as a tonic it has few equals......and would do same to this photinia
I know Photinias are often grown as a hedge, suggesting they are tough plants, but they can be fussy and disease prone.
Last summer and since it has.been very wet and on clay it would not have enjoyed this. Feeding and better weather may well improve matters dramatically
10/04/2013 at 22:33
I have some soil improver so may throw some if that at the base. Chicken pelly so ok???

I built up the eart about a foot so I could put bedding plants in without being down at the root ball level. It was the first bush I ever bought and I really don't want to loose it!

I have cineraria at the base as it overwintered and I'm unsure if I can take cuttings off this then oust. Or just trim back, then I can get to the soil more and turn the top with fertiliser.

Thanks for replying!
10/04/2013 at 22:34
Oh my dad trimmed it back about 7 months after it was planted and he took it back hard to make a shape. So I would be cutting into old wood now if I took more!!
10/04/2013 at 22:56
So you planted red robin and then added a foot or so of earth? That is not really good idea..it means you planted that much deeper.
Ideally I would lightly scrape some of that soil back.
10/04/2013 at 23:11
Yes that's what my dad was advised to do especially as was windy at my front when it was planted. Just hoping it picks up and puts on
More growth this year. Will turn in some chicken pellets and water ASAP!
11/04/2013 at 00:33

Lovely shrub Photinia frasseri x "Red Robin" !  Notoriously difficult to propagate here - but in natural form grows like Billio in Australasia.  This, in my opinion is an extremely valuable plant in many ways.  Turning it into a "standard" - in my opinion is a bit daft.  If it is planted as an ordinary bushy shrub, and pruned regularly - as soon as the new red shoots go """all green and ordinary"""" give it a haircut.  This winter I`ve cut my photinia hedge really hard.  I grew it from my own hardwood cuttings, and decided that it should be kept at a height that could be appreciated from an eye view. 

Red Dahlia....your dad had the right idea !  Gardening is usually more about - what you take out - rather than what you put in.

We so often forget that nature takes her course !  What appears to be a problem when the weather is adverse is just our lovely living plants taking care of themselves. 

When we have `orrid weather - chill out and wait.  Most probs get sorted as soon as Spring gets going.

11/04/2013 at 14:20

Photinia is prone to its own version of Rose Black Spot, and should be treated in the same way. Remove affected leaves ( it may look very bare for a while but will recover) and pick up any fallen leaves. Spray new growth with a fungicide like Systhane.

It spreads through a photinia by means of raindrops landing on an affected leaf and splashing onto other leaves. 

11/04/2013 at 14:28
Will put in some fertiliser and see how we go. It was bought as a standard, not my idea but looked stunning when I bought it all those years ago. Thanks for tips
10/05/2013 at 04:55

My photinia recently has lost lots of leaves - post sever winds and salt from sea spray. Some new leaves curly after a short time. Should i prune back to healthy shoots.?  New growth seem ok? Confused.. Had a beautiful bushy hedge.. Can i rescue it?

Now its sparce and needs something.. Help please.

14/01/2014 at 16:27

I know this thread is a bit old now, but was interested by what Verdun was saying about photinias being fussy and disease-prone.

I have a still very young and small (1.5ft, plants last year) Pink Marble, which was literally massacred by a pest in Spring - most of the lovely, tender pink leaves were eaten in a matter of days, in spite of attempts on my part to protect it. I tried using garlic spray to deter pests, as I don't like using chemicals, and although this works brilliantly on aphids etc, I suspect pests like caterpillars etc don't mind it.

Has anyone had the same experience or know what could have eaten it so?

I never saw what it was doing the damage, but am determined not to let the little b****rs do the same thing again this year - it really decimated the poor plant...

14/01/2014 at 17:54

Hiya Jess

I grow,this variety too.  

I wonder if vine weevils were the culprit.

I am determined to keep my Pink Marble compact so I pruned back quite hard in its first,year and since.  

Just re read,your post and now think caterpillars or snails were the nibblers.  Weevils tend to eat notches and dont "decimate" leaves like that.....in my experience anyway.  tiny snails in late summer can wreak havoc but caterpillars were a maor menace last year on a wide range of plants.

I would use nematodes Jess in the spring assuming snail damage

14/01/2014 at 22:36

Hello Verdun

Yes, I'd initially thought vine weevils too 9we've been plagued the past 2 years and I've used nematodes), but as you said, the leaves were completely stripped bare, rather than having notches nibbled out of them.

Little swines.

I had slug pellets down for snails and used nematodes for slugs.

So by process of elimination, could it be caterpillars?

Wonder if there are nematodes for them too...my garden will be awash with about 3 different kinds by Spring, at this rate!

 

14/01/2014 at 23:28

Hello Jess, yes there are nematodes for caterpillars.  

Just be vigilant from,the start this year. Torchlight visits in the spring will confirm snails.   Better than pellets. 

 

15/01/2014 at 10:21

You're right - just don't always have much time! But I try to use them only around a few more sensitive plants. Also have some resident frogs though, so would like to try eliminating all poisons, as I'm worried they could be harmed by pellets.

Nematodes for caterpillars it is then! Do you happen to know when they would be at their most active Verdun? It certainly looked like caterpillars could be the culprits, rather than snails, just because of the speed at which the leaf-stripping happened.

15/01/2014 at 10:24

Spring would be best I think.  Most other nematodes are used when it's warmer.

 

Good luck jess 

15/01/2014 at 10:25

Thanks Verdun you're a font of knowledge, as ever.

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