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About
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Advanced Care
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More About How-Tos
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Seasonal Tips
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Pests & Diseases
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More Info

How to Care for Blackboard Tree

Blackboard tree (Alstonia scholaris) is a perennial evergreen tree that can grow to 40 m tall. It is a tropical tree with fragrant clusters of showy white flowers that bloom in fall. The perfume-like scent of the blossoms is more obvious during the evenings. Most often planted as a street tree. Another common name for this tree is Devil’s tree.
Water
Water
Every 2 weeks
Sunlight
Sunlight
Full sun
Blackboard tree
Blackboard tree
Blackboard tree
Blackboard tree
Blackboard tree
care_advanced_guide

Advanced Care Guide

PlantCare:TransplantSummary

How to Transplant Blackboard tree?

Optimum transplanting of blackboard tree is between mid-spring and early-summer, taking advantage of the season's gentle temperature and balanced moisture levels. Pick well-drained soil locations, preferably in full sun for healthier growth. Remember, freshly transplanted blackboard tree needs regular watering!
PlantCare:TransplantSummary
care_scenes

More Info on Blackboard Tree Growth and Care

Basic Care Guide
Explore More
Lighting
Full sun
Blackboard tree craves a habitat soaked in expansive solar exposure for robust growth. Originating from a climate teeming in such ardor, it thrives exuberantly in these environments. Excessive shade stunts its growth but an abundance of sunshine brings out its vigor; caution is needed as overexposure can cause sunscald.
Best Sunlight Practices
Temperature
0 38 ℃
Blackboard tree is indigenous to environments where temperatures typically range from 68 to 95°F (20 to 35°C). This tree prefers warmer climates with stable temperatures. If in colder regions, consider providing warm shelter or indoor care during the harsh winter months.
Temp for Healthy Growth
Transplant
8-10 feet
Optimum transplanting of blackboard tree is between mid-spring and early-summer, taking advantage of the season's gentle temperature and balanced moisture levels. Pick well-drained soil locations, preferably in full sun for healthier growth. Remember, freshly transplanted blackboard tree needs regular watering!
Transplant Techniques
Feng shui direction
Southeast
The Southeast placement of the blackboard tree may foster an energetic shift that influences personal growth. This is partially due to its thriving nature under bright light, embodied in the element of wood, which is prosperously represented in the Southeast direction in Feng Shui principles. However, interpretation and results can vary greatly depending upon personal energies and surrounding elements.
Fengshui Details
care_seasonal_tips

Seasonal Care Tips

more

Spring

more

Summer

more

Fall

more

Winter

This plant and other temperate fruiting trees and shrubs require care in the early spring.

more
1
Prune back old growth but wait until after the last frost.
more
2
Spring is also the best time for planting, but do not fertilize new plants. Mature specimens will benefit from a monthly application of organic fertilizer.
more
3
Water the plant deeply every couple of weeks.
more
4
Container plants require sunlight in the spring. Move the container to a location receiving several hours of sunlight a day.

Fruiting temperate trees and shrubs like this plant benefit from care during the summer.

more
1
A monthly application of organic fertilizer throughout the summer helps to support growth and encourage fruiting.
more
2
Keep an eye on soil moisture, watering whenever the soil is beginning to dry out.
more
3
Remove any dead and dying leaves from the plant and around the base to help avoid issues with pests and diseases.
more
4
Prune back old growth to help avoid potential issues with broken branches.
more
5
Move container plants to a partially shady location if they are in a consistently sunny area.

You should provide frequent care to your plant throughout the fall.

more
1
Up until your plant reaches dormancy in the cold winter months, continue to water it in cases of little to no rainfall to ensure the soil stays moist and the plant stays productive.
more
2
Make sure it received plenty of direct sun as well.
more
3
Fertilize it once at the beginning of fall, with a citrus fertilizer, then stop fertilizing and pruning during this season, especially as winter approaches. This will help your plant enter winter dormancy more easily.
more
4
Rake up any fallen fall foliage to deter pests and diseases, as bacteria can easily grow in the fallen leaves at the base of the plant.

While your plant is dormant in the winter, let it rest. You’ll need to provide only minimal care at this time.

more
1
Water your plant infrequently, providing it with water it only after the soil dries out to avoid waking it up.
more
2
At the very end of winter, before new growth begins, prune away dead, diseased, or overcrowded branches to jumpstart fresh growth in the spring.
more
3
If you have a potted variety, you can overwinter it indoors in bright sunlight, and you can possibly enjoy the harvest from your plant throughout the season.
care_pet_and_diseases

Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Blackboard tree based on 10 million real cases
Brown spot
Brown spot Brown spot
Brown spot
This infection can cause brown spots or patches to appear on the plant.
Solutions: In minor cases of brown spot, there isn’t any need to treat the disease. However, if much of the foliage is affected and defoliation occurs, the plant will benefit from getting rid of the infection. It is recommended to start by applying organic treatment options, working up to the more potent synthetic, chemical fungicides if necessary. Organic options won’t kill the fungus, but will prevent it from spreading. Dissolve ½ teaspoon of baking soda and one teaspoon of liquid soap in a gallon of water. Using a spray bottle, spray on tops and bottoms of leaves until the mixture drips off. Repeat every two weeks until existing spots stop enlarging and new spots no longer appear. Spray a copper-based fungicidal soap on the leaves, coating the top and bottom leaf surfaces. Reapply as directed on the product label. Copper penetrates the leaf surface and prevents germination of spores so the fungus cannot spread. Apply an all-purpose fungicide to the entire plant, following the label instructions carefully.
Caterpillars
Caterpillars Caterpillars
Caterpillars
Caterpillars are fleshy moth or butterfly larvae that come in an array of colors, patterns, and even hairstyles. They chew on leaves and flower petals, creating large, irregular holes.
Solutions: Even though caterpillars are diverse, they all chew on plant parts and can cause significant damage if present in large numbers. For severe cases: Apply insecticide. For an organic solution, spray plants with a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which specifically affects the larval stage of moths and butterflies. Be sure to coat plants, since caterpillars need to ingest Bt for it to be effective. This will not harm other insects. Spray a chili extract. Chili seeds can be cooked in water to make a spicy spray that caterpillars don't like. Spray this mixture on the plants, but be aware it will also be spicy to humans. Introduce beneficial insects. Release beneficial insects to the garden that eat caterpillars, such as parasitic wasps. For less severe cases: Hand pick. Using gloves, pick off caterpillars on plants and dispose of them in a bucket of soapy water. Dust plants with diatomaceous earth. This powder is harmless to humans but irritates caterpillars. Therefore, it will make it difficult for caterpillars to move and eat.
Scars
Scars Scars
Scars
Any light-colored markings that appear on stems but which do not enlarge or multiply are simply scars that have healed.
Solutions: Each source of scarring requires a different approach to help your plant recover. Protect the trunk and leaves from physical damage like scrapes. If pests or disease are the cause of scarring, isolate the plant from others to avoid further spread. Some pests can be removed with organic remedies such as a soft cloth and soapy water solution or diluted isopropyl alcohol spray. Stop sunburn by moving your plant away from direct sunlight and making sure it has the water it needs. Frequent leaf or bud loss may be due to insufficient light or nutrients.
Gall
Gall Gall
Gall
Insects or diseases can cause strange protrusions on the leaves, sometimes manifesting in a range of colors and shapes.
Solutions: While galls may look alarming, the physical structures themselves pose little threat to the plant or tree and do not require chemical treatment. If the galls are unsightly, they can be removed using sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruners or loppers. Discard or destroy all removed plant parts. It is important to treat the underlying cause, as insects or diseases can create long-term damage if left untreated. After identifying the pest, natural or chemical may be used, depending upon individual gardening preferences. To treat pests naturally apply an insecticidal soap. Dilute 1 tablespoon of soap per quart of water in a spray bottle and mix gently. Spray the entire plant until the leaves are dripping, making sure to coat the underside and tops. Re-spray every 2 to 3 days. To treat organically apply neem oil, a naturally occurring pesticide, per label directions every 7 days until pests are eradicated. To treat chemically apply an insecticidal foliar spray. Follow the dosing instructions provided by the manufacturer on the product label. For fungal or bacterial causes, apply a bactericide or copper-based fungicide in the spring, following the dosing instructions provided on the product label.
Nutrient deficiencies
Nutrient deficiencies Nutrient deficiencies
Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
Solutions: There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
Aged yellow and dry
Aged yellow and dry Aged yellow and dry
Aged yellow and dry
Natural aging can cause leaves to turn yellow and dry out.
Solutions: If the yellowing and drying of leaves and flowers is a natural progression due to age, nothing can be done to slow or stop the process. Once hormones within the plant begin the process of senescence, it’s irreversible.
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Brown spot
plant poor
Brown spot
This infection can cause brown spots or patches to appear on the plant.
Overview
Overview
Discolored spots on the foliage of plants are one of the most common disease problems people observe. These spots are caused by fungal and bacterial diseases, with most infections related to a fungal pathogen.
Brown spot can occurs on all houseplants, flowering ornamentals, vegetable plants, and leaves of trees, bushes, and shrubs. No plants are resistant to it, and the problem is worse in warm, wet environments. It can occur at any point in the life stage as long as leaves are present.
Small brownish spots appear on the foliage and enlarge as the disease progresses. In severe cases, the plant or tree is weakened when the lesions interrupt photosynthesis or cause defoliation.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
In most cases, brown spot only affects a small percentage of the whole plant, appearing on a small amount of the leaves. A small infection only puts minor stress on the plant. However, if left untreated and the disease progresses over numerous seasons, it will severely impact the health and productivity of the infected specimen.
  • Sporulation begins (reproduction of the fungal spores), and tiny spots appear on leaves.
  • Placement is often random and scattered as diseases are spread through raindrops.
  • May appear on lower leaves and the interior of the plant where humidity is higher.
  • Brown spots enlarge and grow large enough to touch neighboring spots to form a more prominent blotch.
  • Leaf margins may turn yellow.
  • Tiny black dots (fruiting bodies of the fungi) appear in the dead spots.
  • Blotches grow in size until the entire leaf is brown.
  • The leaf falls off the plant.
Severe Symptoms
  • Partial or complete premature defoliation
  • Reduced growth
  • Increased susceptibility to pests and other diseases
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Brown spot, or leaf spot, is a common descriptive term given to several diseases affecting the leaves of plants and trees. Around 85% of diseases exhibiting leaf spots are due to fungus or fungus-like organisms. Sometimes brown spot is caused by a bacterial infection, or insect activity with similar symptoms.
When conditions are warm and the leaf surfaces are wet, fungal spores being transported by wind or rain land on the surface and cling to it. They do not rupture the cell walls but grow in the space between the plant plasma membrane and the plant cell wall. As the spores reproduce, they release toxins and enzymes that cause necrotic spots (i.e., dead tissue) on the leaves, allowing the fungi to consume the products released when the cells degrade.
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Caterpillars
plant poor
Caterpillars
Caterpillars are fleshy moth or butterfly larvae that come in an array of colors, patterns, and even hairstyles. They chew on leaves and flower petals, creating large, irregular holes.
Overview
Overview
Caterpillars can cause problems for home gardeners. If not managed, these insects can defoliate a plant in just a matter of days. However, home gardeners face a challenge because these caterpillars eventually turn into beautiful butterflies and moths, which are important for pollination and the general ecosystem.
There are thousands of different species of caterpillars and many will only target certain plants. If caterpillars are posing a problem, they can be removed by hand, or gardeners can use insect-proof netting to protect their valuable plants.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Caterpillars are the larvae of butterflies and moths. During the warmer months, butterflies and moths that visit gardens will lay their eggs on the underside of leaves.
When the tiny eggs hatch, the young larvae emerge and start feeding on the leaves of the plant. Depending on how many larvae have hatched, they can easily defoliate the plant in a very short period of time. Caterpillars will shed their skin as they grow, around 4 or 5 times during this feeding cycle.
Symptoms of caterpillars eating plants appear as holes in the leaves. The edges of the leaves may be eaten away as well, and flowers can be affected as well.
Some are easy to see, but others need to be searched for. This is because their bodies are often camouflaged to look like part of the plant. Gardeners need to look carefully along the stems of the plant as well as under the leaves. Also, look for tiny white, yellow, or brown eggs that can be found in groups on the underside of leaves.
Once the caterpillar is fully grown, it transforms into a pupa or chrysalis. Then, after a period of time that varies according to the species, a butterfly or moth will emerge from the pupa and the cycle begins again.
Solutions
Solutions
Even though caterpillars are diverse, they all chew on plant parts and can cause significant damage if present in large numbers.
For severe cases:
  1. Apply insecticide. For an organic solution, spray plants with a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which specifically affects the larval stage of moths and butterflies. Be sure to coat plants, since caterpillars need to ingest Bt for it to be effective. This will not harm other insects.
  2. Spray a chili extract. Chili seeds can be cooked in water to make a spicy spray that caterpillars don't like. Spray this mixture on the plants, but be aware it will also be spicy to humans.
  3. Introduce beneficial insects. Release beneficial insects to the garden that eat caterpillars, such as parasitic wasps.
For less severe cases:
  1. Hand pick. Using gloves, pick off caterpillars on plants and dispose of them in a bucket of soapy water.
  2. Dust plants with diatomaceous earth. This powder is harmless to humans but irritates caterpillars. Therefore, it will make it difficult for caterpillars to move and eat.
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Scars
plant poor
Scars
Any light-colored markings that appear on stems but which do not enlarge or multiply are simply scars that have healed.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Scars form when the plant repairs wounds. They can be the result of people or pets passing by and scraping the plant. Once the underlying issue is resolved, the plant will heal but a scar may remain.
Pests and pathogens can also cause scarring. Insects may attack the plant for a meal, resulting in extensive scarring when a few invaders turn into an infestation. Diseases such as fungus and bacteria can weaken the plant, causing brown spots, mushy areas, or blisters that lead to scars.
Scars occur on stems when a leaf or bud has been lost and the plant has healed. The harder tissue is like a scab that protects a wound.
On other occasions, scars can signal problems from environmental conditions, such as overexposure to sunlight or heat. It might surprise you to know that plants can suffer from sunburn, even desert dwellers like cactus!
Solutions
Solutions
Each source of scarring requires a different approach to help your plant recover.
  1. Protect the trunk and leaves from physical damage like scrapes.
  2. If pests or disease are the cause of scarring, isolate the plant from others to avoid further spread. Some pests can be removed with organic remedies such as a soft cloth and soapy water solution or diluted isopropyl alcohol spray.
  3. Stop sunburn by moving your plant away from direct sunlight and making sure it has the water it needs.
  4. Frequent leaf or bud loss may be due to insufficient light or nutrients.
Prevention
Prevention
Preventing some sources of scarring is easier than others, but all start with careful attention to your plants once you decide to bring them home.
  1. Review specific guidelines for your plant, including soil drainage, watering, and fertilizer requirements.
  2. Inspect plants before planting and use sterile pots and fresh potting soil or media to limit transfer of fungi or bacteria.
  3. Once established, check your plants regularly for signs of scarring or the presence of pests, as it is better to catch problems as early as possible.
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Gall
plant poor
Gall
Insects or diseases can cause strange protrusions on the leaves, sometimes manifesting in a range of colors and shapes.
Overview
Overview
A general symptom of plant irritation, a gall is a spherical or lumpy, tumor-like growth that appears on leaves, stems, branches and trunks of various plants, especially trees. Galls form around a potential problem or irritation, like a pearl forming around a bit of sand in an oyster shell, to separate the cause from the rest of the plant. Many form around insect damage or a localized infection.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Abnormal growths appear on leaves or other parts of the plant. The brown or brightly colored bumps may be simple or complicated structures.
  • Leaf galls appear on most herbaceous plants and trees. They are more prone to develop on new growth and following mild winters in which insects and diseases were not killed by the cold.
  • Leaf galls look like leaf curls, nipples, blisters, or erineums (hairy growths) and can occur on upper or lower leaf surfaces.
  • Bud or flower galls cause these parts to be deformed in size or shape.
  • Stem and twig galls cause deformed growth on twigs and stems, with symptom severity ranging from slight swelling to large, knot-like growth.
  • Stunted plant growth is possible, as galls steal nutrients from the plant.
  • Long-lasting damage can occur if there are many galls or galls present for a long period of time.
It's important to note that galls, especially leaf galls, are extremely common. Noticing galls is not a cause to panic – most plants will have galls from time to time. However, it is when they are widespread or long-lasting that steps will need to be taken to remove them.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
There are many different processes and organisms that produce galls. Some appear when sap-sucking insects feed on leaves; some shelter developing insect eggs; some develop as a response to fungal or bacterial infection.
The most common culprits include:
  • Feeding or egg-laying mites and insects - the saliva and other secretions cause the plants to produce more growth hormones.
  • High hormone production resulting in increased cell numbers or cell size (because of this, mature plants tend not to be affected).
  • Fungal infection
  • Galls forming on leaf blades and sheaths are more often caused by viruses or bacteria.
  • Nematodes can also cause galls to form on plants, but these tend to form in the roots.
  • Parasitic plants such as mistletoe can cause galls on their hosts.
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Nutrient deficiencies
plant poor
Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
Overview
Overview
Nutrient deficiencies can be seen in many different ways on plants. Basically, the lack of nutrients will inhibit plant growth, produce weak stems and leaves, and leave plants open to infection from pests and diseases. Plants use the nutrients from the soil to help them with photosynthesis. This, in turn, produces healthy plant growth. Plants that lack adequate amounts of nutrients will look lackluster and unhealthy. Eventually, if this is not addressed, it will cause the plants to die. The most important nutrients that plants need are nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Additionally, plants require small amounts of micronutrients such as iron, boron, manganese, zinc, copper, and molybdenum.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
A common sign that plants are experiencing nutrient deficiencies is the yellowing of leaves. This may be an overall yellowing or leaves that are yellow but still have green veins. These leaves will eventually brown off and die.
Another sign is the loss of plant vigor. The plants may not be growing as well as they should or their growth may be stunted.
Below are some common symptoms that appear when plants are lacking in nutrients.
Nitrogen (N): Inner, older leaves yellow first. If the deficiency is severe, yellowing progresses outward to newer growth.
Potassium (K): Leaf edges may turn brown and crinkly, with a yellowing layer forming just inside of the edge. Older leaves tend to be impacted first.
Phosphorus (P): Lack of vigorous growth. Plants will appear stunted.
Zinc (Zn): Yellowing tends to occur first at the base of the leaf.
Copper (Cu): Newer leaves begin to yellow first, with older leaves yellowing only if the deficiency becomes severe.
Boron (B): Newer leaves are impacted first. Foliage may also become particularly brittle in cases of boron deficiency.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
There are several factors that can lead to nutrient deficiencies, a situation where plants are not receiving the nutrients that they need. This could be because they are planted in nutrient-deficient soils, or that the soil's pH is too high or low. Incorrect soil pH can lock up certain nutrients, thus making them unavailable to plants. Lack of soil moisture can also be a problem, because plants need water to be able to absorb the nutrients from the soil.
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Aged yellow and dry
plant poor
Aged yellow and dry
Natural aging can cause leaves to turn yellow and dry out.
Overview
Overview
Regardless of the type of plant or where it is grown, at some point, it will begin to aged yellow and dry. This is a natural, unavoidable process that happens when the plant has completed all of the steps in its life.
Annual plants go through this process at the end of a single growing season. Perennial plants live for multiple years, if not tens or hundreds of years, but will still ultimately exhibit these symptoms.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
When plants have progressed through their natural developmental stages and are nearing the end of their lifecycle, they begin showing signs of decline. Leaves will start to yellow and droop, and over time they turn papery brown and dry.
Once completely dry, the leaves begin to fall from the plant until the entire plant has dried out.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
At the end of its life, genetic coding within the plant increases the production of ethylene, a phytohormone that controls senescence or natural aging and death. Cell division stops, and the plant begins catabolizing resources to use in other parts of the plant.
As this happens, the tissues begin yellow and drying until the entire plant is desiccated and perishes.
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care_more_info

More About Blackboard Tree

Plant Type
Plant Type
Tree
Lifespan
Lifespan
Perennial
Spread
Spread
3.5 m
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Fall
Flower Color
Flower Color
Green
White
Yellow
Cream
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green
Plant Height
Plant Height
20 m
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About
Advanced Care
More About How-Tos
Seasonal Tips
Pests & Diseases
More Info
Blackboard tree
Blackboard tree
Blackboard tree
Blackboard tree
Blackboard tree

How to Care for Blackboard Tree

Blackboard tree (Alstonia scholaris) is a perennial evergreen tree that can grow to 40 m tall. It is a tropical tree with fragrant clusters of showy white flowers that bloom in fall. The perfume-like scent of the blossoms is more obvious during the evenings. Most often planted as a street tree. Another common name for this tree is Devil’s tree.
Water
Every 2 weeks
Water
Sunlight
Full sun
Sunlight Sunlight detail
care_advanced_guide

Advanced Care Guide

PlantCare:TransplantSummary

How to Transplant Blackboard tree?

PlantCare:TransplantSummary
Optimum transplanting of blackboard tree is between mid-spring and early-summer, taking advantage of the season's gentle temperature and balanced moisture levels. Pick well-drained soil locations, preferably in full sun for healthier growth. Remember, freshly transplanted blackboard tree needs regular watering!
care_scenes

More Info on Blackboard Tree Growth and Care

Basic Care Guide
Explore More
care_seasonal_tips

Seasonal Care Tips

more

Spring

more

Summer

more

Fall

more

Winter

This plant and other temperate fruiting trees and shrubs require care in the early spring.

more
1
Prune back old growth but wait until after the last frost.
more
2
Spring is also the best time for planting, but do not fertilize new plants. Mature specimens will benefit from a monthly application of organic fertilizer.
more
3
Water the plant deeply every couple of weeks.
more
4
Container plants require sunlight in the spring. Move the container to a location receiving several hours of sunlight a day.

Fruiting temperate trees and shrubs like this plant benefit from care during the summer.

more
1
A monthly application of organic fertilizer throughout the summer helps to support growth and encourage fruiting.
more
2
Keep an eye on soil moisture, watering whenever the soil is beginning to dry out.
more
3
Remove any dead and dying leaves from the plant and around the base to help avoid issues with pests and diseases.
more
4
Prune back old growth to help avoid potential issues with broken branches.
more
5
Move container plants to a partially shady location if they are in a consistently sunny area.

You should provide frequent care to your plant throughout the fall.

more
1
Up until your plant reaches dormancy in the cold winter months, continue to water it in cases of little to no rainfall to ensure the soil stays moist and the plant stays productive.
more
2
Make sure it received plenty of direct sun as well.
more
3
Fertilize it once at the beginning of fall, with a citrus fertilizer, then stop fertilizing and pruning during this season, especially as winter approaches. This will help your plant enter winter dormancy more easily.
more
4
Rake up any fallen fall foliage to deter pests and diseases, as bacteria can easily grow in the fallen leaves at the base of the plant.

While your plant is dormant in the winter, let it rest. You’ll need to provide only minimal care at this time.

more
1
Water your plant infrequently, providing it with water it only after the soil dries out to avoid waking it up.
more
2
At the very end of winter, before new growth begins, prune away dead, diseased, or overcrowded branches to jumpstart fresh growth in the spring.
more
3
If you have a potted variety, you can overwinter it indoors in bright sunlight, and you can possibly enjoy the harvest from your plant throughout the season.
care_pet_and_diseases

Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Blackboard tree based on 10 million real cases
Brown spot
Brown spot Brown spot Brown spot
This infection can cause brown spots or patches to appear on the plant.
Solutions: In minor cases of brown spot, there isn’t any need to treat the disease. However, if much of the foliage is affected and defoliation occurs, the plant will benefit from getting rid of the infection. It is recommended to start by applying organic treatment options, working up to the more potent synthetic, chemical fungicides if necessary. Organic options won’t kill the fungus, but will prevent it from spreading. Dissolve ½ teaspoon of baking soda and one teaspoon of liquid soap in a gallon of water. Using a spray bottle, spray on tops and bottoms of leaves until the mixture drips off. Repeat every two weeks until existing spots stop enlarging and new spots no longer appear. Spray a copper-based fungicidal soap on the leaves, coating the top and bottom leaf surfaces. Reapply as directed on the product label. Copper penetrates the leaf surface and prevents germination of spores so the fungus cannot spread. Apply an all-purpose fungicide to the entire plant, following the label instructions carefully.
Learn More About the Brown spot more
Caterpillars
Caterpillars Caterpillars Caterpillars
Caterpillars are fleshy moth or butterfly larvae that come in an array of colors, patterns, and even hairstyles. They chew on leaves and flower petals, creating large, irregular holes.
Solutions: Even though caterpillars are diverse, they all chew on plant parts and can cause significant damage if present in large numbers. For severe cases: Apply insecticide. For an organic solution, spray plants with a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which specifically affects the larval stage of moths and butterflies. Be sure to coat plants, since caterpillars need to ingest Bt for it to be effective. This will not harm other insects. Spray a chili extract. Chili seeds can be cooked in water to make a spicy spray that caterpillars don't like. Spray this mixture on the plants, but be aware it will also be spicy to humans. Introduce beneficial insects. Release beneficial insects to the garden that eat caterpillars, such as parasitic wasps. For less severe cases: Hand pick. Using gloves, pick off caterpillars on plants and dispose of them in a bucket of soapy water. Dust plants with diatomaceous earth. This powder is harmless to humans but irritates caterpillars. Therefore, it will make it difficult for caterpillars to move and eat.
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Scars
Scars Scars Scars
Any light-colored markings that appear on stems but which do not enlarge or multiply are simply scars that have healed.
Solutions: Each source of scarring requires a different approach to help your plant recover. Protect the trunk and leaves from physical damage like scrapes. If pests or disease are the cause of scarring, isolate the plant from others to avoid further spread. Some pests can be removed with organic remedies such as a soft cloth and soapy water solution or diluted isopropyl alcohol spray. Stop sunburn by moving your plant away from direct sunlight and making sure it has the water it needs. Frequent leaf or bud loss may be due to insufficient light or nutrients.
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Gall
Gall Gall Gall
Insects or diseases can cause strange protrusions on the leaves, sometimes manifesting in a range of colors and shapes.
Solutions: While galls may look alarming, the physical structures themselves pose little threat to the plant or tree and do not require chemical treatment. If the galls are unsightly, they can be removed using sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruners or loppers. Discard or destroy all removed plant parts. It is important to treat the underlying cause, as insects or diseases can create long-term damage if left untreated. After identifying the pest, natural or chemical may be used, depending upon individual gardening preferences. To treat pests naturally apply an insecticidal soap. Dilute 1 tablespoon of soap per quart of water in a spray bottle and mix gently. Spray the entire plant until the leaves are dripping, making sure to coat the underside and tops. Re-spray every 2 to 3 days. To treat organically apply neem oil, a naturally occurring pesticide, per label directions every 7 days until pests are eradicated. To treat chemically apply an insecticidal foliar spray. Follow the dosing instructions provided by the manufacturer on the product label. For fungal or bacterial causes, apply a bactericide or copper-based fungicide in the spring, following the dosing instructions provided on the product label.
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Nutrient deficiencies
Nutrient deficiencies Nutrient deficiencies Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
Solutions: There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
Learn More About the Nutrient deficiencies more
Aged yellow and dry
Aged yellow and dry Aged yellow and dry Aged yellow and dry
Natural aging can cause leaves to turn yellow and dry out.
Solutions: If the yellowing and drying of leaves and flowers is a natural progression due to age, nothing can be done to slow or stop the process. Once hormones within the plant begin the process of senescence, it’s irreversible.
Learn More About the Aged yellow and dry more
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Brown spot
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Brown spot
This infection can cause brown spots or patches to appear on the plant.
Overview
Overview
Discolored spots on the foliage of plants are one of the most common disease problems people observe. These spots are caused by fungal and bacterial diseases, with most infections related to a fungal pathogen.
Brown spot can occurs on all houseplants, flowering ornamentals, vegetable plants, and leaves of trees, bushes, and shrubs. No plants are resistant to it, and the problem is worse in warm, wet environments. It can occur at any point in the life stage as long as leaves are present.
Small brownish spots appear on the foliage and enlarge as the disease progresses. In severe cases, the plant or tree is weakened when the lesions interrupt photosynthesis or cause defoliation.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
In most cases, brown spot only affects a small percentage of the whole plant, appearing on a small amount of the leaves. A small infection only puts minor stress on the plant. However, if left untreated and the disease progresses over numerous seasons, it will severely impact the health and productivity of the infected specimen.
  • Sporulation begins (reproduction of the fungal spores), and tiny spots appear on leaves.
  • Placement is often random and scattered as diseases are spread through raindrops.
  • May appear on lower leaves and the interior of the plant where humidity is higher.
  • Brown spots enlarge and grow large enough to touch neighboring spots to form a more prominent blotch.
  • Leaf margins may turn yellow.
  • Tiny black dots (fruiting bodies of the fungi) appear in the dead spots.
  • Blotches grow in size until the entire leaf is brown.
  • The leaf falls off the plant.
Severe Symptoms
  • Partial or complete premature defoliation
  • Reduced growth
  • Increased susceptibility to pests and other diseases
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Brown spot, or leaf spot, is a common descriptive term given to several diseases affecting the leaves of plants and trees. Around 85% of diseases exhibiting leaf spots are due to fungus or fungus-like organisms. Sometimes brown spot is caused by a bacterial infection, or insect activity with similar symptoms.
When conditions are warm and the leaf surfaces are wet, fungal spores being transported by wind or rain land on the surface and cling to it. They do not rupture the cell walls but grow in the space between the plant plasma membrane and the plant cell wall. As the spores reproduce, they release toxins and enzymes that cause necrotic spots (i.e., dead tissue) on the leaves, allowing the fungi to consume the products released when the cells degrade.
Solutions
Solutions
In minor cases of brown spot, there isn’t any need to treat the disease. However, if much of the foliage is affected and defoliation occurs, the plant will benefit from getting rid of the infection. It is recommended to start by applying organic treatment options, working up to the more potent synthetic, chemical fungicides if necessary.
Organic options won’t kill the fungus, but will prevent it from spreading.
  1. Dissolve ½ teaspoon of baking soda and one teaspoon of liquid soap in a gallon of water. Using a spray bottle, spray on tops and bottoms of leaves until the mixture drips off. Repeat every two weeks until existing spots stop enlarging and new spots no longer appear.
  2. Spray a copper-based fungicidal soap on the leaves, coating the top and bottom leaf surfaces. Reapply as directed on the product label. Copper penetrates the leaf surface and prevents germination of spores so the fungus cannot spread.
  3. Apply an all-purpose fungicide to the entire plant, following the label instructions carefully.
Prevention
Prevention
Like many other diseases, it is easier to prevent brown spot than cure it, and this is done through cultural practices.
  • Clear fall leaves from the ground before winter to minimize places where fungi and bacteria can overwinter.
  • Maintain good air movement between plants through proper plant spacing.
  • Increase air circulation through the center of plants through pruning.
  • Thoroughly clean all pruning tools after working with diseased plants.
  • Never dispose of disease plant material in a compost pile.
  • Avoid overhead watering to keep moisture off of the foliage.
  • Keep plants healthy by providing adequate sunlight, water, and fertilizer.
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Caterpillars
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Caterpillars
Caterpillars are fleshy moth or butterfly larvae that come in an array of colors, patterns, and even hairstyles. They chew on leaves and flower petals, creating large, irregular holes.
Overview
Overview
Caterpillars can cause problems for home gardeners. If not managed, these insects can defoliate a plant in just a matter of days. However, home gardeners face a challenge because these caterpillars eventually turn into beautiful butterflies and moths, which are important for pollination and the general ecosystem.
There are thousands of different species of caterpillars and many will only target certain plants. If caterpillars are posing a problem, they can be removed by hand, or gardeners can use insect-proof netting to protect their valuable plants.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Caterpillars are the larvae of butterflies and moths. During the warmer months, butterflies and moths that visit gardens will lay their eggs on the underside of leaves.
When the tiny eggs hatch, the young larvae emerge and start feeding on the leaves of the plant. Depending on how many larvae have hatched, they can easily defoliate the plant in a very short period of time. Caterpillars will shed their skin as they grow, around 4 or 5 times during this feeding cycle.
Symptoms of caterpillars eating plants appear as holes in the leaves. The edges of the leaves may be eaten away as well, and flowers can be affected as well.
Some are easy to see, but others need to be searched for. This is because their bodies are often camouflaged to look like part of the plant. Gardeners need to look carefully along the stems of the plant as well as under the leaves. Also, look for tiny white, yellow, or brown eggs that can be found in groups on the underside of leaves.
Once the caterpillar is fully grown, it transforms into a pupa or chrysalis. Then, after a period of time that varies according to the species, a butterfly or moth will emerge from the pupa and the cycle begins again.
Solutions
Solutions
Even though caterpillars are diverse, they all chew on plant parts and can cause significant damage if present in large numbers.
For severe cases:
  1. Apply insecticide. For an organic solution, spray plants with a Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), which specifically affects the larval stage of moths and butterflies. Be sure to coat plants, since caterpillars need to ingest Bt for it to be effective. This will not harm other insects.
  2. Spray a chili extract. Chili seeds can be cooked in water to make a spicy spray that caterpillars don't like. Spray this mixture on the plants, but be aware it will also be spicy to humans.
  3. Introduce beneficial insects. Release beneficial insects to the garden that eat caterpillars, such as parasitic wasps.
For less severe cases:
  1. Hand pick. Using gloves, pick off caterpillars on plants and dispose of them in a bucket of soapy water.
  2. Dust plants with diatomaceous earth. This powder is harmless to humans but irritates caterpillars. Therefore, it will make it difficult for caterpillars to move and eat.
Prevention
Prevention
Prevention may require less effort than attempts to eradicate infestations that have already begun. Here are our top steps for prevention:
  1. Monitor plants. Check plants regularly for caterpillar eggs on leaves. If they do not belong to an endangered species, they should be squished.
  2. Use insect netting. Cover plants with insect netting to prevent butterflies and moths from laying eggs on plants.
  3. Apply diatomaceous earth. Apply DE to plants early in the season and reapply after rain.
  4. Encourage plant diversity. This will attract predatory insects including parasitic wasps.
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Scars
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Scars
Any light-colored markings that appear on stems but which do not enlarge or multiply are simply scars that have healed.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Scars form when the plant repairs wounds. They can be the result of people or pets passing by and scraping the plant. Once the underlying issue is resolved, the plant will heal but a scar may remain.
Pests and pathogens can also cause scarring. Insects may attack the plant for a meal, resulting in extensive scarring when a few invaders turn into an infestation. Diseases such as fungus and bacteria can weaken the plant, causing brown spots, mushy areas, or blisters that lead to scars.
Scars occur on stems when a leaf or bud has been lost and the plant has healed. The harder tissue is like a scab that protects a wound.
On other occasions, scars can signal problems from environmental conditions, such as overexposure to sunlight or heat. It might surprise you to know that plants can suffer from sunburn, even desert dwellers like cactus!
Solutions
Solutions
Each source of scarring requires a different approach to help your plant recover.
  1. Protect the trunk and leaves from physical damage like scrapes.
  2. If pests or disease are the cause of scarring, isolate the plant from others to avoid further spread. Some pests can be removed with organic remedies such as a soft cloth and soapy water solution or diluted isopropyl alcohol spray.
  3. Stop sunburn by moving your plant away from direct sunlight and making sure it has the water it needs.
  4. Frequent leaf or bud loss may be due to insufficient light or nutrients.
Prevention
Prevention
Preventing some sources of scarring is easier than others, but all start with careful attention to your plants once you decide to bring them home.
  1. Review specific guidelines for your plant, including soil drainage, watering, and fertilizer requirements.
  2. Inspect plants before planting and use sterile pots and fresh potting soil or media to limit transfer of fungi or bacteria.
  3. Once established, check your plants regularly for signs of scarring or the presence of pests, as it is better to catch problems as early as possible.
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Gall
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Gall
Insects or diseases can cause strange protrusions on the leaves, sometimes manifesting in a range of colors and shapes.
Overview
Overview
A general symptom of plant irritation, a gall is a spherical or lumpy, tumor-like growth that appears on leaves, stems, branches and trunks of various plants, especially trees. Galls form around a potential problem or irritation, like a pearl forming around a bit of sand in an oyster shell, to separate the cause from the rest of the plant. Many form around insect damage or a localized infection.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Abnormal growths appear on leaves or other parts of the plant. The brown or brightly colored bumps may be simple or complicated structures.
  • Leaf galls appear on most herbaceous plants and trees. They are more prone to develop on new growth and following mild winters in which insects and diseases were not killed by the cold.
  • Leaf galls look like leaf curls, nipples, blisters, or erineums (hairy growths) and can occur on upper or lower leaf surfaces.
  • Bud or flower galls cause these parts to be deformed in size or shape.
  • Stem and twig galls cause deformed growth on twigs and stems, with symptom severity ranging from slight swelling to large, knot-like growth.
  • Stunted plant growth is possible, as galls steal nutrients from the plant.
  • Long-lasting damage can occur if there are many galls or galls present for a long period of time.
It's important to note that galls, especially leaf galls, are extremely common. Noticing galls is not a cause to panic – most plants will have galls from time to time. However, it is when they are widespread or long-lasting that steps will need to be taken to remove them.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
There are many different processes and organisms that produce galls. Some appear when sap-sucking insects feed on leaves; some shelter developing insect eggs; some develop as a response to fungal or bacterial infection.
The most common culprits include:
  • Feeding or egg-laying mites and insects - the saliva and other secretions cause the plants to produce more growth hormones.
  • High hormone production resulting in increased cell numbers or cell size (because of this, mature plants tend not to be affected).
  • Fungal infection
  • Galls forming on leaf blades and sheaths are more often caused by viruses or bacteria.
  • Nematodes can also cause galls to form on plants, but these tend to form in the roots.
  • Parasitic plants such as mistletoe can cause galls on their hosts.
Solutions
Solutions
While galls may look alarming, the physical structures themselves pose little threat to the plant or tree and do not require chemical treatment. If the galls are unsightly, they can be removed using sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruners or loppers. Discard or destroy all removed plant parts.
It is important to treat the underlying cause, as insects or diseases can create long-term damage if left untreated. After identifying the pest, natural or chemical may be used, depending upon individual gardening preferences.
  • To treat pests naturally apply an insecticidal soap. Dilute 1 tablespoon of soap per quart of water in a spray bottle and mix gently. Spray the entire plant until the leaves are dripping, making sure to coat the underside and tops. Re-spray every 2 to 3 days.
  • To treat organically apply neem oil, a naturally occurring pesticide, per label directions every 7 days until pests are eradicated.
  • To treat chemically apply an insecticidal foliar spray. Follow the dosing instructions provided by the manufacturer on the product label.
  • For fungal or bacterial causes, apply a bactericide or copper-based fungicide in the spring, following the dosing instructions provided on the product label.
Prevention
Prevention
To prevent the common causes of gall:
  • Rake up all fallen leaves at the end of the growing season, and dispose of the leaves and all other plant debris to get rid of sites where gall producers can overwinter.
  • Avoid over-fertilizing plants, as it induces stress, making them more susceptible to pest problems.
  • Keep plants well-watered, preventing drought stress.
  • Apply dormant oil in early spring to control leaf-eating insects.
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Nutrient deficiencies
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Nutrient deficiencies
A lack of nutrients will cause a widespread yellowing of the leaves. The yellowing may begin at the base or top of the plant.
Overview
Overview
Nutrient deficiencies can be seen in many different ways on plants. Basically, the lack of nutrients will inhibit plant growth, produce weak stems and leaves, and leave plants open to infection from pests and diseases. Plants use the nutrients from the soil to help them with photosynthesis. This, in turn, produces healthy plant growth. Plants that lack adequate amounts of nutrients will look lackluster and unhealthy. Eventually, if this is not addressed, it will cause the plants to die. The most important nutrients that plants need are nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Additionally, plants require small amounts of micronutrients such as iron, boron, manganese, zinc, copper, and molybdenum.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
A common sign that plants are experiencing nutrient deficiencies is the yellowing of leaves. This may be an overall yellowing or leaves that are yellow but still have green veins. These leaves will eventually brown off and die.
Another sign is the loss of plant vigor. The plants may not be growing as well as they should or their growth may be stunted.
Below are some common symptoms that appear when plants are lacking in nutrients.
Nitrogen (N): Inner, older leaves yellow first. If the deficiency is severe, yellowing progresses outward to newer growth.
Potassium (K): Leaf edges may turn brown and crinkly, with a yellowing layer forming just inside of the edge. Older leaves tend to be impacted first.
Phosphorus (P): Lack of vigorous growth. Plants will appear stunted.
Zinc (Zn): Yellowing tends to occur first at the base of the leaf.
Copper (Cu): Newer leaves begin to yellow first, with older leaves yellowing only if the deficiency becomes severe.
Boron (B): Newer leaves are impacted first. Foliage may also become particularly brittle in cases of boron deficiency.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
There are several factors that can lead to nutrient deficiencies, a situation where plants are not receiving the nutrients that they need. This could be because they are planted in nutrient-deficient soils, or that the soil's pH is too high or low. Incorrect soil pH can lock up certain nutrients, thus making them unavailable to plants. Lack of soil moisture can also be a problem, because plants need water to be able to absorb the nutrients from the soil.
Solutions
Solutions
There are several easy ways to remedy the nutrient deficiencies in soils.
  1. Use a water-soluble fertilizer. Fertilizers will include most or all of the macro and micro-nutrients the plants need to thrive. Adding some fertilizer to the soil will make those nutrients available and can combat deficiencies.
  2. Regularly apply organic fertilizer pellets. Organic fertilizers such as animal manures and bonemeal can supply plants with all the nutrients that they need to grow strong and healthy.
  3. Apply compost. Though not as finely tuned as artificial fertilizer, compost can nevertheless be rich in important nutrients and should be applied to the soil regularly.
  4. Apply nutrients via foliar application. In addition to supplementing the soil with nutrients, foliar fertilizer can be applied directly to the plant's leaves. Nutrients offered via foliar application are often taken up even quicker than those put in the soil, so the foliar application can be great for swiftly addressing specific deficiencies.
Prevention
Prevention
There are several easy ways to prevent nutrient deficiencies in plants.
  1. Regular fertilizing. Regular addition of fertilizer to the soil is one of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent deficiencies.
  2. Proper watering. Both over and under watering can adversely impact a plant's roots, which in turn makes it harder for them to properly take up nutrients.
  3. Testing the soil's pH. A soil's acidity or alkalinity will impact the degree to which certain nutrients are available to be taken up by plants. Knowing the soil's pH means it can be amended to suit the needs of the individual plants.
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Aged yellow and dry
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Aged yellow and dry
Natural aging can cause leaves to turn yellow and dry out.
Overview
Overview
Regardless of the type of plant or where it is grown, at some point, it will begin to aged yellow and dry. This is a natural, unavoidable process that happens when the plant has completed all of the steps in its life.
Annual plants go through this process at the end of a single growing season. Perennial plants live for multiple years, if not tens or hundreds of years, but will still ultimately exhibit these symptoms.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
When plants have progressed through their natural developmental stages and are nearing the end of their lifecycle, they begin showing signs of decline. Leaves will start to yellow and droop, and over time they turn papery brown and dry.
Once completely dry, the leaves begin to fall from the plant until the entire plant has dried out.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
At the end of its life, genetic coding within the plant increases the production of ethylene, a phytohormone that controls senescence or natural aging and death. Cell division stops, and the plant begins catabolizing resources to use in other parts of the plant.
As this happens, the tissues begin yellow and drying until the entire plant is desiccated and perishes.
Solutions
Solutions
If the yellowing and drying of leaves and flowers is a natural progression due to age, nothing can be done to slow or stop the process. Once hormones within the plant begin the process of senescence, it’s irreversible.
Prevention
Prevention
Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent plants from dying of “old age.” To help prolong their life, and put off symptoms of aged yellow and dry for as long as possible, take care of them by giving them enough water, fertilizing them appropriately, and making sure they get enough sunlight.
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More About Blackboard Tree

Plant Type
Plant Type
Tree
Lifespan
Lifespan
Perennial
Spread
Spread
3.5 m
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Fall
Flower Color
Flower Color
Green
White
Yellow
Cream
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green
Plant Height
Plant Height
20 m
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Lighting
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Indoor
Indoor
Outdoor
Choose a site here for personalized care tips.
Requirements
Full sun
Ideal
Above 6 hours sunlight
Watch how sunlight gracefully moves through your garden, and choose spots that provide the perfect balance of light and shade for your plants, ensuring their happiness.
Essentials
Blackboard tree craves a habitat soaked in expansive solar exposure for robust growth. Originating from a climate teeming in such ardor, it thrives exuberantly in these environments. Excessive shade stunts its growth but an abundance of sunshine brings out its vigor; caution is needed as overexposure can cause sunscald.
Preferred
Tolerable
Unsuitable
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Artificial lighting
Indoor plants require adequate lighting for optimal growth. When natural sunlight is insufficient, particularly in winter or in less sunny spaces, artificial lights offer a vital solution, promoting faster, healthier growth.
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Indoor plants require adequate lighting for optimal growth. When natural sunlight is insufficient, particularly in winter or in less sunny spaces, artificial lights offer a vital solution, promoting faster, healthier growth.
1. Choose the right type of artificial light: LED lights are a popular choice for indoor plant lighting because they can be customized to provide the specific wavelengths of light that your plants need.
Full sun plants need 30-50W/sq ft of artificial light, partial sun plants need 20-30W/sq ft, and full shade plants need 10-20W/sq ft.
2. Determine the appropriate distance: Place the light source 12-36 inches above the plant to mimic natural sunlight.
3. Determine the duration: Mimic the length of natural daylight hours for your plant species. most plants need 8-12 hours of light per day.
Important Symptoms
Insufficient light
Blackboard tree thrives in full sunlight but can tolerate partial shade. However, when cultivated indoors during winter, it's often placed in rooms with insufficient lighting, leading to easily noticeable symptoms of light deficiency.
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(Symptom details and solutions)
Small leaves
New leaves may grow smaller in size compared to the previous ones once they have matured.
Leggy or sparse growth
The spaces between leaves or stems of your Blackboard tree may become longer, resulting in a thin and stretched-out appearance. This can make the plant look sparse and weak, and it may easily break or lean due to its own weight.
Faster leaf drop
When plants are exposed to low light conditions, they tend to shed older leaves early to conserve resources. Within a limited time, these resources can be utilized to grow new leaves until the plant's energy reserves are depleted.
Slower or no new growth
Blackboard tree enters a survival mode when light conditions are poor, which leads to a halt in leaf production. As a result, the plant's growth becomes delayed or stops altogether.
Lighter-colored new leaves
Insufficient sunlight can cause leaves to develop irregular color patterns or appear pale. This indicates a lack of chlorophyll and essential nutrients.
Solutions
1. To ensure optimal growth, gradually move plants to a sunnier location each week, until they receive at least 6 hours of direct sunlight daily. Use a south-facing window and keep curtains open during the day for maximum sunlight exposure and nutrient accumulation.2. To provide additional light for your plant, consider using artificial light if it's large or not easily movable. Keep a desk or ceiling lamp on for at least 8 hours daily, or invest in professional plant grow lights for ample light.
Excessive light
Blackboard tree thrives in full sun exposure but can also tolerate partial shade. They have a remarkable resilience to intense sunlight, and symptoms of sunburn may not be easily visible.
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(Symptom details and solutions)
Chlorosis
Chlorosis is a condition where the plant's leaves lose their green color and turn yellow. This is due to the breakdown of chlorophyll from excessive sunlight, which negatively affects the plant's ability to photosynthesize.
Sunscald
Sunscald occurs when the plant's leaves or stems are damaged by intense sunlight exposure. It appears as pale, bleached, or necrotic areas on the plant tissue and can reduce the plant's overall health.
Leaf Curling
Leaf curling is a symptom where leaves curl or twist under extreme sunlight conditions. This is a defense mechanism used by the plant to reduce its surface area exposed to sunlight, minimizing water loss and damage.
Wilting
Wilting occurs when a plant loses turgor pressure and its leaves and stems begin to droop. Overexposure to sunlight can cause wilting by increasing the plant's water loss through transpiration, making it difficult for the plant to maintain adequate hydration.
Leaf Scorching
Leaf scorching is a symptom characterized by the appearance of brown, dry, and crispy edges or patches on leaves due to excessive sunlight. This can lead to a reduction in photosynthetic capacity and overall plant health.
Solutions
1. Move your plant to the optimal position where it can receive abundant sunlight but also have some shade. An east-facing window is an ideal choice as the morning sunlight is gentler. This way, your plant can enjoy ample sunlight while reducing the risk of sunburn.2. It is recommended to trim off any completely dehydrated or withered parts of the plant.
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Temperature
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Indoor
Indoor
Outdoor
Choose a site here for personalized care tips.
Requirements
Ideal
Tolerable
Unsuitable
Just like people, each plant has its own preferences. Learn about your plants' temperature needs and create a comforting environment for them to flourish. As you care for your plants, your bond with them will deepen. Trust your intuition as you learn about their temperature needs, celebrating the journey you share. Lovingly monitor the temperature around your plants and adjust their environment as needed. A thermometer can be your ally in this heartfelt endeavor. Be patient and gentle with yourself as you explore your plants' temperature needs. Cherish your successes, learn from challenges, and nurture your garden with love, creating a haven that reflects the warmth of your care.
Essentials
Blackboard tree is indigenous to environments where temperatures typically range from 68 to 95°F (20 to 35°C). This tree prefers warmer climates with stable temperatures. If in colder regions, consider providing warm shelter or indoor care during the harsh winter months.
Regional wintering strategies
Blackboard tree has some cold tolerance and generally does not require any additional measures when the temperature is above {Tolerable_growing_temperature_min}. However, if the temperature is expected to drop below {Tolerable_growing_temperature_min}, it is necessary to take some temporary measures for cold protection, such as wrapping the plant with plastic film, fabric, or other materials. Once the temperature rises again, the protective measures should be removed promptly.
Important Symptoms
Low Temperature
Blackboard tree has moderate tolerance to low temperatures and thrives best when the temperature is above {Suitable_growth_temperature_min}. During winter, it should be kept above {Tolerable_growing_temperature_min}. When the temperature falls below {Limit_growth_temperature}, the leaves may start to droop. In mild cases, they can recover, but in severe cases, the leaves will wilt and eventually fall off.
Solutions
Trim off the frost-damaged parts. Prior to encountering low temperatures again, wrap the plant with materials such as non-woven fabric or cloth, and construct a wind barrier to protect it from the cold wind.
High Temperature
During summer, Blackboard tree should be kept below {Suitable_growth_temperature_max}. When the temperature exceeds {Tolerable_growing_temperature_max}, the color of the leaves becomes lighter, the leaf tips may become dry and withered, the leaves may curl, and the plant becomes more susceptible to sunburn.
Solutions
Trim away the sunburned and dried-up parts. Move the plant to a location that provides shade from the midday and afternoon sun, or use a shade cloth to create shade. Water the plant in the morning and evening to keep the soil moist.
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Transplant
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How to Successfully Transplant Blackboard Tree?
Optimum transplanting of blackboard tree is between mid-spring and early-summer, taking advantage of the season's gentle temperature and balanced moisture levels. Pick well-drained soil locations, preferably in full sun for healthier growth. Remember, freshly transplanted blackboard tree needs regular watering!
What Preparations are Needed Before Transplanting Blackboard Tree?
What is the Ideal Time for Transplanting Blackboard Tree?
The ideal season for relocating blackboard tree would be during late spring to early summer. Since blackboard tree thrives in moderate moisture, this period provides the perfect environment for rooting. Transplanting blackboard tree during this time promotes healthy growth, and helps the plant settle in its new location more efficiently. This friendly advice ensures your blackboard tree will have the best start in its new home, making the transplantation worthwhile.
How Much Space Should You Leave Between Blackboard Tree Plants?
Great work on deciding to transplant your blackboard tree! I'd suggest leaving around 8-10 feet (2.4 to 3 meters) between each plant. This helps ensure they have sufficient space to grow and thrive, reducing the risk of over-competition for resources.
What is the Best Soil Mix for Blackboard Tree Transplanting?
When preparing the soil, blackboard tree prefers well-drained, sandy loam or clay soils. Work in a base fertilizer that's rich in organic matter. This sets a healthy foundation for your blackboard tree to soar. Please remember to avoid water-logged soils.
Where Should You Relocate Your Blackboard Tree?
As for location, blackboard tree enjoys areas with full sun exposure, but can tolerate light shade too. Finding a spot that gets sunlight for the majority of the day would be perfect. But don't worry, this versatile plant doesn't need relentless rays to prosper.
What Equipments Should You Prepare Before Transplantation Blackboard Tree?
Shovel or Garden spade
Used to dig around the blackboard tree plant without harming the roots while removing from its original location and for digging the new hole.
Gardening Gloves
To protect your hands while working with the soil and plant.
Garden cart or wheelbarrow
To transport the blackboard tree plant from its original location to the new one without damaging it.
Sturdy Tarp
To rest the blackboard tree plant on it during transportation, to avoid any root damage and to keep the root ball moist.
Pruning Scissors
To trim any damaged or excessively long roots.
Watering Can
To water the blackboard tree plant before removal, after transplanting and during its initial growth period.
Mulch
To help retain soil moisture and reduce temperature extremes in the root zone.
How Do You Remove Blackboard Tree from the Soil?
From Ground: Pre-water the blackboard tree plant thoroughly, which makes the soil moist and easy for digging. Then, use a garden spade to dig a trench in a perfect circle around the plant, while ensuring the plant's root ball remains intact. Carefully work the spade under the root ball to dislodge the plant from its original location.
From Pot: Water the blackboard tree plant well before starting. Turn the pot sideways, hold the plant gently by the base, and tap the bottom of the pot to loosen it. Slide the blackboard tree plant out of the pot, making sure you don't pull on the stems.
From Seedling Tray: Water the tray well, allow excess water to drain. Gently hold the seedling by its leaves to avoid damaging the fragile stem and use a dibbler (or similar tool) to loosen the soil around the root ball. Lift the seedling out carefully to avoid damaging the roots.
Step-by-Step Guide for Transplanting Blackboard Tree
Step1 Prep Beforehand
Choose a new location for the blackboard tree with plenty of space for the plant to grow. Water the blackboard tree in its original location a few days before you plan to move it. This will ease the removal and lessen transplant shock.
Step2 Dig the New Hole
Before removing the blackboard tree from its original spot, dig a hole in the new location. The hole should be twice as wide as the root ball but only as deep.
Step3 Remove the blackboard tree Plant
Follow the instructions given in the removal process section.
Step4 Check the Root Ball
Check the root ball for tangled or broken roots and prune them.
Step5 Replant
Place the blackboard tree in the new hole. Make sure the top of the root ball is level with the ground surface, then fill the hole with soil.
Step6 Water Thoroughly
Water well after planting. This helps settle the soil and gives the distracted roots a boost of hydration.
How Do You Care For Blackboard Tree After Transplanting?
Watering
Keep the soil evenly moist around the blackboard tree plant for the first few weeks after transplanting, to help the roots settle in. However, be aware not to leave the soil overly saturated, as it may lead to root rot.
Mulching
A generous layer of organic mulch around the blackboard tree plant helps maintain soil moisture, control weed growth and maintain temperature.
Pruning
Prune back the blackboard tree within a month after transplanting to help reduce water loss via transpiration and balance root-cutting losses if any.
Ongoing Care
Keep an eye on the blackboard tree plant for a few weeks to catch any signs of stress or disease early. Regularly check the plant’s moisture level, especially during the warm period.
Troubleshooting Common Issues with Blackboard Tree Transplantation.
When's the best season to transplant blackboard tree?
The most ideal season to transplant blackboard tree is the late spring-early summer 'transition time' (S4-S6). This period offers the optimal root establishment conditions.
What is the recommended spacing for blackboard tree when transplanting?
For blackboard tree, maintaining a gap of around 8-10 feet (2.4-3 meters) between plants while transplanting is suggested. It ensures adequate space for growth and development.
How much should I water blackboard tree when transplanting?
Water blackboard tree thoroughly immediately after transplanting. Then, maintain consistent moisture. Adjust watering amount based on your soil and climate condition to prevent waterlogging.
What soil conditions are best for transplanting blackboard tree?
Blackboard tree prefers consistently moist, well-drained soil. It could be acidic, neutral, or basic. Before transplanting, loosen the soil to encourage root growth.
How much sunlight does blackboard tree need after being transplanted?
Blackboard tree enjoys bright indirect sunlight, but can tolerate partial shade too. After transplanting, place the plant in an area with plenty of light but away from harsh sunburn.
How to deal with the damaged or dead branches of blackboard tree during transplantation?
Trim off the dead or damaged branches before transplanting blackboard tree. It enables the plant to focus energy on establishing new roots instead of maintaining old, unhealthy limbs.
Should I fertilize blackboard tree right after transplanting?
No. Allow blackboard tree to adjust to the new location for a few weeks before applying any fertilizers. Over-fertilization immediately after transplanting can stress the plant.
Can blackboard tree survive if I transplant it in the wrong season?
While blackboard tree is hardy, transplanting out of late spring-early summer 'transition time' (S4-S6) might stress it. Monitor the plant's health closely if you must do this.
How do I handle blackboard tree's root ball during transplanting?
Aim to keep the root ball intact while transplanting blackboard tree. Handle it gently to minimize root disturbance as this could stifle the plant's growth and adaptation.
Why are the leaves of my transplanted blackboard tree turning yellow?
Yellowing leaves may suggest transplant shock, overwatering or nutrient deficiency. If it happens just after transplanting, give it time to recover. If it continues, review its care requirements.
Discover care info about seasonal tips, plant diseases, and more?
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