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Can anyone offer any advice for my newly planted honeysuckle - Graham Thomas - which has developed purple/black spots on its leaves. The base of the plant isn't too badly affected at present but the top half had wilted and the leaves curled up, it looked very sorry for itself. I cut back the woody stems and have found a very small amount of green life in these so I have my fingers crossed it will come back. The base of the plant seems to be healthy enough at the moment and the majority of the leaves here have not been affected, for the time being at least. I went to a garden centre today and was advised to try Rose Clear spray to help eradicate the spotting but as I am new to gardening Im worried that I'll be doing more harm than good. I'm really disappointed about my poor honeysuckle which was doing great until we had the spell of hot weather recently.

Keep it well watered at the roots and mulch with some garden compost. It will be powdery Mildew causing the symptoms you describe, the only thing honeysuckle really suffer from. It will come back so don't worry.


I would say it isnt Powdery Mildew. You would have white patches on the leaves.

The chap at the garden centre was right in suggesting Rose Clear as your honeysuckle has black spot, a disease that usually affects Roses.

Most Honeysuckle are quite vigorous so this doesnt tend to trouble them too much.


Thanks guys, I shall go ahead with the rose clear and keep my fingers crossed that the honeysuckle perks up soon!

I agree with Dave, honeysuckle leaves turn grey/black when succumbing to powdery mildew, before the fungus develops its powdery coat.  

It affects honeysuckle that has been weakened by drought - honeysuckle, being a plant of damp woodlands likes it's feet to be cool and damp.  

The leaves will go crispy and fall off but if you remedy the problem, plenty of watering (not soggy but moist) and shaded roots, the plant will recover.

No need to spray with anything.  I believe Roseclear contains a fungicide so it will tackle mould-type problems, but the leaves that already have it will die, and if you cure the problem the new leaves won't get the mildew.

I bought a new honeysuckle this year and I think it had been a bit dry in the pot at the GC - a few weeks after planting it developed powdery mildew and all the leaves fell off, but it is planted in the right place, with shaded roots and moist but well-drained soil and it is recovering with new shoots appearing everywhere.   The mildew only appears some time after the problem has occurred.

I do find that some garden centres like to solve your problems by selling you something! 

Graham Thomas is a wonderful honeysuckle - I've grown one in a previous garden and it was one of the first plants I planted in this one.  I find it takes a couple of years to get going, and then it's simply beautiful - such a good perfume and such elegant white and honeycoloured flowers - a very good choice 



Thanks dovefromabove, I first noticed the change of colour on the leaves shortly after the hot spell we had in May and hoped with lots of watering it would come back but the leaves wilted and fell off and the stems were dead so I've cut it back and have been giving it a good water everyday. I made the novice mistake of watering it from above as it looked like it needed I realise my error which explains why the top third of the plant had died????. The honeysuckle is positioned to grow up a wall on an area we have used weed control fabric then added bark so the roots are nicely shaded and the top of the plant is partially shaded, our compost bin is also here so I hope this to be a good spot for the plant. As I said I am new to gardening you can tell by my rookie mistakes???? but am finding it so relaxing and rewarding already I absolutely love it so to find my honeysuckle is not doing as well as it should be is very disappointing. So thanks guys for the advice and I'll take note next time at the GC????

Hi, honeysuckle is pretty tough so hopefully yours will recover.

 I'm planting another in a very dry area under some trees - when I plant it I'm going to insert a plastic bottle 'funnel' like this 

 to enable me to direct water straight to the roots of the honeysuckle - I use this method for growing courgettes in raised beds and it gets the water right down to the roots instead of running off the surface of dry ground.

I  almost bury the bottle so that only a couple of inches is showing about the soil, so it's not too unsightly.

A Brilliant tip dovefromabove I shall try this????
Hi I'm new to this. My honeysuckle is 2 yr old was doing well now most leaves have either dropped off or about to brown black crisp flowering loads but tiny few new leaves don't no whether to cut right back

Just give it plenty of water to make sure the roots are damp and cool - it will recover 

good tip Dovefromabove, will try that myself



Hi I bought a honeysuckle from my GC in June and have planted in a large garden tub attached to an archway (hoping that the honeysuckle would climb over the arch)...and at first it romped away but now for the last week I have noticed the leaves turning a dark colour and what looks like a light dusting of fungus on the leaves and the stems ...please help , what is the best thing to treat it with.  I have kept it well watered and it gets sun until late afternoon.


It has Powdery mildew - keep the soil moist and the container shaded and cool - (if yuy can plant it in the ground that will be much better) - the leaves will go yellow and fall, but the plant will recover and grow again if you can get the cultural conditions right, see my posts above.

Good luck

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