London (change)
14 messages
27/04/2013 at 10:13

I have a ceanothus "Italian skies" which appears to have died. It has been established a few years and flowered well last year. However this year a lot of it appears to be dead with no foliage buds. There are some small buds but some of them are dying off. Was this due to the cold weather or has it been overshadowed by my forsythia bush which appears to have spread over the ceanothus. Or is there some other reason.


27/04/2013 at 10:25

The RHS page says the following "They are fast-growing but may be short-lived" and "may be affected by phytophthora root disease"!

Here some info on the root disease:


27/04/2013 at 12:13

My neighbours massive Ceanothus died last year.  My Ceanothus, which was probably planted around the same time when the house was built in 1996 is still looking OK, but I think it's on borrowed time.  It has gone rather woody and I can't cut it back as it doesn't grow from old wood.  Although I (and the bees) love the blue flowers I'm already think about its replacement.  I planted a clematis thru it two years ago, which flowers after the Ceanothus has finished  - looks good too!

27/04/2013 at 13:16

Ceanothus don't last too long.  They suddenly decide to die.

Best not to plant a replacement in the same area though

27/04/2013 at 18:05


Thankyou to those who answered my query. Whilst feeling sad on the lose of my Italian skies I will be looking for another ceanothus BUT will not plant in same


27/04/2013 at 18:38

Do not give up just yet. Winter before last I lost several due to the very cold weather, but several produced late new growth low down that didn't show until late May. I cut them back to just above the new buds and they have recovered. 

27/04/2013 at 18:41

Mine looked dead after last winter but I cut it right back. It now has 2 main stems, one with lots of flower buds, the other is dead. I'll enjoy the blue, then it goes.

27/04/2013 at 18:42

I have two and both shoot from old wood quite happily.

27/04/2013 at 19:04

Well hang fire then patannie.  

Let us know what happens 

Hope your ceanothus survives

28/04/2013 at 09:03

OK I will leave italian skies to possibly recover. BUT I still might buy another type to plant elsewhere. I quite like the foliage on "Lemon and Lime." Has anyone had experience of this shrub. Many thanks all

28/04/2013 at 11:27

I've grown and seen growing down here many variegated ceanothus.  Didn't like any of them except for a green and white one....forget the name. Often the blue flowers are tinted green oryellow

I think the straight green varieties are best....and Concha the best of the lot

However, there are some lovely variegated caryopteris.....Worcester gold,  summer sorbet .this is very nice....and sterling silver which has silvery leaves and woNderful dark blue flowers.

28/04/2013 at 12:16

I have several Concha. Lovely shrub. Every year I take a few cuttings. 

29/04/2013 at 08:23

On way back from Edinburgh Botanics yesterday I popped into Dobbie in Dunfermiline for a coffee on way home .

But had to have a week peek at plants to and they had this stunning lemon&lime ceanothus.

If I had room I would have bought it.

But if my Standard Ceanothus not does nto start to grow I may go back for it.

Varigated leaves it was so pretty.




29/04/2013 at 14:50

Mine got trashed by the cold easterly winds this winter, was fine right up till then. It still has some green bit, but alot is brown. Think i'll chop the brown and hope it comes from below as it's only young (2 years) so might do. I like them alot, and particularly because they are bee tastic, but i won't be getting another till the garden establishes, leason learned they are not good pilgrim plants, mind you even my pyracantha which are supposed to be hard as nails got a hammering this year.

email image
14 messages