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Common reed
Common reed
Common reed
Common reed
Common reed
Common reed
Add to My Garden
Common reed
Phragmites australis
Common reed (Phragmites australis) is a perennial flowering grass that is considered highly invasive. Common reed has thick roots and rhizomes that spread underground. Each plant produces thousands of seeds. The rapid growth of this species upsets the natural ecological balance by overwhelming native species, destroying habitats, threatening wildlife and increasing the potential for fires.
Water
Twice per week
Water
Weeds
care guide

Care Guide for Common reed

Water
Water
Aquatic plant, can be cultivated in water.
Soil
Soil
Sand, Chalky, Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline
Sunlight
Sunlight
Full sun, Partial sun
Hardiness Zones
Hardiness Zones
5 - 8
Planting Time
Planting Time
Fall
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Common reed
Water
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Twice per week
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Water
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Fall
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Questions About Common reed

Watering Watering Watering
How Often to Water Your Common reed?
The watering needs of Common reed will vary depending on where it is planted. Generally, you should water this grass every week. In hot climates, once or twice a week watering in the summer may be necessary. In moderate climates, watering once every seven days or more may be enough. Grass in containers almost always need more frequent watering than grasses in the ground. But with a species such as this that can thrive in full sun or part shade, the location also matters. Shaded grasses need to be watered less frequently than in-ground grasses.

Common reed should only be watered when the soil is dry. If you’re unsure when to water, there are a few key signs you can use as your cue. Pressing your finger a couple of inches into the soil will tell you if the soil is dry. For a potted grass, you can weigh the grass with a portable scale to see how light it is, but you can also quickly feel when the pot is light from lack of water. Like many types of grass, the blades may appear folded along their centers and thinner than usual when the roots lack sufficient water. Despite its drought tolerance, regular, deep waterings will reward you with a beautiful color.

In the wild, Common reed grows in open scrubland, where it would be subject to extreme heat, loads of bright sun, and intermittent rain. Because this grass is drought resistant, you might expect never to need to water it. But don’t let its hardiness fool you, Common reed still needs care and attention. Even though this hardy grass can handle harsh, dry conditions, gardeners agree that it thrives best with consistent water.

When first planted, Common reed will need more frequent water until it has established deep roots. For Common reed in pots, the soil will dry out quickly, especially if the pot is in hot, direct sun for a large part of the day. Test the soil every 3 to 4 days and water only when it feels dry. Common reeded in the ground generally needs less watering, but that depends on the soil it is grown in. Heavy clay soil holds water for a long time and may feel dry at the surface while still retaining plenty of moisture below the ground. Sandy soils that drain quickly will need to be watered more often.
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What Should I Be Careful with When I Water My Common reed in Different Seasons, Climate or During Different Growing Periods of My Plants?
You can often tell if you are watering enough by the rate of growth of your grasses. Common reed during the hottest months of the year and has been known to double in size in a year’s time. If the weather is hot and the grass is not growing vigorously, you may need to adjust your watering schedule. In winter, you might be able to get away with watering only once a month, but you will still want to touch the soil to test for moisture.

During a growth cycle (in the warmest months), the grass will need more water than usual. But during winter and cooler months, the need for water will be dramatically reduced. The most important thing to remember about Common reed is that the soil it is planted in should always be allowed to dry out completely before adding water.
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What to Do If Your Water Common reed Too Much or Too Little?
Without proper watering, this beautiful ornamental grass will underperform. In the ground, watering issues can be solved, but In a container, too much or too little water will kill Common reed in short order. When Common reed isn't receiving the right amount of water, it may stop growing. In the case of overwatering, it will begin to display yellow leaves with brown tips. Underwatering can produce drooping leaves, weak seed head production, and browned leaves. If you suspect your Common reed has been improperly watered, the first thing to do is figure out if the problem is too much or too little. If your Common reed is getting too much water, stop watering it immediately. Sometimes it can take weeks for heavy soils to dry out, so be patient. At the first sign of new growth, test the soil for moisture and decide whether it needs more water or not. The solution for Common reed receiving too little water is even simpler: give the grasses a nice, deep drink and see if it perks up.

Bearing all of this in mind, remember that a long, deep watering is always better than a lot of shallow, frequent waterings. The reason for this is that deep watering encourages grasses to grow deep roots, which makes them more drought resistant and less prone to problems from watering.
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pests

Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Common reed based on 10 million real cases
Plant dried up
Plant dried up Plant dried up
Plant dried up
The entire plant may dry out due to dieback or normal seasonal dormancy.
Solutions: The solution for a dried out plant depends on the cause, so determine the cause before selecting a treatment method. Adjust your watering: Stick your finger in the soil near the roots. If it feels bone dry or overly saturated, you need to adjust your watering frequency accordingly. Prune back dead foliage: Snip off any brown stems and leaves on the plant to make space for new growth. This encourages the roots to send up fresh stems. Move to a proper environment. This may involve decreasing or increasing sun exposure, depending on the species. Decrease fertilizer applications. If you have applied too much fertilizer, you can repot plants with fresh potting soil. Wait. If your plant has dried out as daylight is decreasing, it is entering dormancy. Decrease watering and wait until the plant resumes growth.
Underwatering
Underwatering Underwatering
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Solutions: The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with. Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock. In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Leaf scorch
Leaf scorch Leaf scorch
Leaf scorch
Leaf blight causes leaves to dry out and turn brown starting at their tips.
Solutions: The solution to leaf scorch will depend on the cause, however, in general all cultural care methods that improve plant health and root functionality will reduce symptoms. Mulching the root zone (preferably with wood chip mulch) helps retain moisture, reduce evaporation, and promotes a healthy, functional root environment that is critical for water movement to the leaves. Check the root collar for girdling or circling roots that strangle the trunk and limit water and nutrient movement. Protect trees from severe root damage of nearby construction and excavation. If fertilizer burn is to blame, irrigate the soil deeply to flush out excess fertilizer salts. However, keep in mind that fertilizer runoff is an environmental pollutant. Avoiding excess fertilization in the first place is the best approach. If soil testing has revealed a potassium deficiency, apply a potassium fertilizer and water well. Even if you have enough potassium in the soil, plants will not be able to take it up if the soil is consistently too dry. Severely affected twigs may be removed using a pair of sharp and sanitized pruning shears, as weakened branches are susceptible to secondary infections. If your plant has bacterial leaf scorch, there is no cure. Antibiotic injections applied by a professional can reduce symptoms for a season, however, the above cultural management methods are the best options to reduce symptoms and prolong life. An infected plant will likely die within ten years.
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Plant dried up
plant poor
Plant dried up
The entire plant may dry out due to dieback or normal seasonal dormancy.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Your plant has dried out and turned brown. It might be starting to wilt, with no noticeable green around the stems and leaves. Touch the leaves, and they may crinkle under your fingers.
Possible causes of a dried out plant include:
  1. Not enough water. A lack of water will lead to dry plant tissue.
  2. Too much water. Watering too much can lead to root rot which makes the plant struggle to take up water. Rotted, mushy roots are a sign of overeating.
  3. Entering dormancy. As perennial plants enter their resting period known as dormancy, their leaves dry out and may fall off. This happens during decreasing day length.
  4. Exposure to herbicides and other toxic substances. If a plant is hit with a large dose herbicide or other toxic chemical, the plant will turn brown.
  5. Too much fertility. An excess of fertilizer can prevent plants from taking up water, leading to drying.
  6. Improper sun exposure. Just like humans, plants can get sunburn by intense, direct light. Plants can also dry out if they don’t receive enough light.
To determine whether the plant is still alive and can be saved, you can:
  1. Bend a stem. If the stem is pliable, the plant is still alive. If the stem breaks, the plant is dead.
  2. Gently scratch the stem with your fingernail for signs of green inside. If your plant is dead, the stem will be brittle and brown throughout.
  3. Cut the stems back a little bit a time for visible green growth. If none of the stems have visible green growth, the plant is dead.
Solutions
Solutions
The solution for a dried out plant depends on the cause, so determine the cause before selecting a treatment method.
  1. Adjust your watering: Stick your finger in the soil near the roots. If it feels bone dry or overly saturated, you need to adjust your watering frequency accordingly.
  2. Prune back dead foliage: Snip off any brown stems and leaves on the plant to make space for new growth. This encourages the roots to send up fresh stems.
  3. Move to a proper environment. This may involve decreasing or increasing sun exposure, depending on the species.
  4. Decrease fertilizer applications. If you have applied too much fertilizer, you can repot plants with fresh potting soil.
  5. Wait. If your plant has dried out as daylight is decreasing, it is entering dormancy. Decrease watering and wait until the plant resumes growth.
Prevention
Prevention
Prevention involves providing your plant with the proper environment.
  1. Provide the proper amount of water. The amount of water depends on a plant’s size, species, and environment. A general rule is to allow soil to dry out between waterings.
  2. Place plants in the proper environment. Provide the proper hours of sun and temperature for your individual plant.
  3. Provide proper fertility. Most plants only need to be fertilized once or twice a year; don’t overapply.
  4. Keep plants free from toxic substances. Keep herbicides and toxic household chemicals away from your plants.
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Underwatering
plant poor
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Underwatering plants is one of the quickest ways to kill them. This is something that most gardeners are well aware of. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how much water a plant needs can be tricky, especially considering that underwatering and overwatering present similar symptoms in plants.
Therefore, it’s important to be vigilant and attentive to each plants’ individual needs.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
As mentioned earlier, overwatering and underwatering present similar symptoms in plants. These symptoms include poor growth, wilted leaves, defoliation, and brown leaf tips or margins. Ultimately, both underwatering and overwatering can lead to the death of a plant.
The easiest way to determine whether a plant has too much water or too little is to look at the leaves. If underwatering is the culprit, the leaves will look brown and crunchy, while if it’s overwatering, they will appear yellow or a pale green in color.
When this issue first begins, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all, particularly in hardy or drought-tolerant plants. However, they will begin to wilt once they start suffering from a lack of water. The edges of the plant’s leaves will become brown or curled. Soil pulling away from the edges of the planter is a telltale sign, or a crispy, brittle stem.
Prolonged underwatering can cause a plant’s growth to become stunted. The leaves might drop and the plant can be more susceptible to pest infestations, too.
DiseaseCause
DiseaseCause
Underwatering is caused by, quite simply, not watering plants often or deeply enough. There is a heightened risk of underwatering if any of these situations apply:
  • Extreme heat and dry weather (when growing outdoors)
  • Grow lights or indoor lighting that is too bright or intense for the type of plant
  • Using fast-draining growing media such as sand
Solutions
Solutions
The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with.
Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock.
In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Prevention
Prevention
Always check the soil before watering. If the top inch of soil feels moist, though not wet, the watering is perfect. If it’s dry, water it immediately. If it feels soggy, you avoid watering until it dries out a bit more.
Also, make sure the lighting is sufficient for the species. Plants grow faster and need more water when there is intense light or lots of heat. Being aware of these conditions and modifying them, if possible, is a good way to prevent underwatering. Many container plants are potted in soil mixtures mean to be well-draining. Adding materials that retain moisture, like compost or peat moss, can also prevent these symptoms.
Other tips to prevent underwatering include:
  • Choose pots with adequately-sized drainage holes
  • Avoid warm temperatures
  • Use large pots with additional soil (these take longer to dry out)
  • Avoid terracotta pots, which lose water quickly
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Leaf scorch
plant poor
Leaf scorch
Leaf blight causes leaves to dry out and turn brown starting at their tips.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Leaf scorch refers to two general conditions: physiological leaf scorch and bacterial leaf scorch. It causes leaves to discolor starting along the margins, and eventually die.
Leaf scorch development is most common in the hot, dry season, becoming most noticeable in late summer. However, it can occur at other times of the year. It most often affects young trees and shrubs, but it can also affect flowers, vegetables, and other plants.
Leaf scorch can get progressively worse over multiple seasons. If the root causes are not addressed, leaf scorch can lead to plant death.
While you cannot reverse the damage caused by physiological leaf scorch, you can prevent further damage. With proper management, plants will fully recover. However, there is no cure for bacterial leaf scorch, which is a systemic infection.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
  • Yellow, brown, or blackened leaves starting with the leaf margins
  • Dying twig tips on trees and shrubs as leaves die and fall
  • Often there is a bright yellow border line between the dead and living leaf tissue
DiseaseCause
DiseaseCause
There are numerous contributing causes of leaf scorch.
Bacterial leaf scorch is caused by the bacterium Xylella fastidiosa. The bacteria block the xylem vessels, preventing water movement. Symptoms may vary across species.
Physiological leaf scorch most commonly occurs when a plant cannot take up enough water. Numerous conditions can lead to this issue, particularly an unhealthy root system. Some causes of an unhealthy root system include overly-compacted soil, recent tillage, root compaction and severing due to pavement or other construction, drought, and overly-saturated soils.
Potassium deficiency can contribute to leaf scorch. Since plants need potassium to move water, they cannot properly move water when there is a lack of potassium.
Too much fertilizer can also cause leaf scorch symptoms. The accumulation of salts (including nutrient salts from fertilizers, as well as salt water) accumulate at the leaf margins and may build up to concentrations that burn the tissues.
Solutions
Solutions
The solution to leaf scorch will depend on the cause, however, in general all cultural care methods that improve plant health and root functionality will reduce symptoms.
  • Mulching the root zone (preferably with wood chip mulch) helps retain moisture, reduce evaporation, and promotes a healthy, functional root environment that is critical for water movement to the leaves.
  • Check the root collar for girdling or circling roots that strangle the trunk and limit water and nutrient movement.
  • Protect trees from severe root damage of nearby construction and excavation.
  • If fertilizer burn is to blame, irrigate the soil deeply to flush out excess fertilizer salts. However, keep in mind that fertilizer runoff is an environmental pollutant. Avoiding excess fertilization in the first place is the best approach.
  • If soil testing has revealed a potassium deficiency, apply a potassium fertilizer and water well. Even if you have enough potassium in the soil, plants will not be able to take it up if the soil is consistently too dry.
  • Severely affected twigs may be removed using a pair of sharp and sanitized pruning shears, as weakened branches are susceptible to secondary infections.
  • If your plant has bacterial leaf scorch, there is no cure. Antibiotic injections applied by a professional can reduce symptoms for a season, however, the above cultural management methods are the best options to reduce symptoms and prolong life. An infected plant will likely die within ten years.
Prevention
Prevention
  • Physiological leaf scorch is best avoided by making sure your plants have a healthy, functional root system and access to enough water. Water regularly, especially on the mornings of excessively hot, sunny days. Deep, infrequent irrigation is better than shallow, frequent irrigation.
  • Have your soil tested and apply the proper nutrients. Be sure to not over-apply fertilizers.
  • Make sure your plants’ roots have room to expand. Avoid compacted soil as well and avoid paving areas above the root zone. Do not till or disturb the soil where plant roots are growing.
  • Plant new trees and shrubs in the fall, so that they have the maximum amount of time to become established before the environmental stresses of the next summer.
  • Remove any dead or dying plant tissue that may harbor secondary infections.
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weed

Weed Control

Weeds
Common reed is a tall grass weed growing widely across the United States and Canada. Its habitats include shorelines, riverbanks, and meadows. It is difficult to eliminate once rooted, and so not suitable for planting in small areas. It appears on state invasive species lists or laws in much of the eastern United States and Alaska, and state law in several western states from Colorado and Utah to Idaho and Washington. The grass displaces native species, blocks sunlight to the surrounding community, and increases fire potential. For control, cut stems below the lowest leaf. For large patches, cutting the perimeter prevents expansion.
How to Control it
The common reed can be largely controlled by regular cutting, hand-pulling, and digging. Though time-consuming and laborious, these activities won't actually eradicate the weed, but they can reduce its growth and further spread if conducted repeatedly and thoroughly (and before seeds mature). The best time to cut is near the end of summer. You can use black plastic wrap to cover the area after the cutting. Leave the wrap during the entire growing season. The high temperatures under the plastic wrap can eventually kill off the common reed. The most effective chemical treatments are those involving glyphosate and imazapyr.
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Distribution Map

Habitat

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Invasive
Potentially invasive
Exotic
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More Info

Plant Type
Plant Type
Herb
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Summer, Fall
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green
Blue
Brown

Symbolism

Protection

Scientific Classification

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Field bindweed
Field bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis) is a native Eurasian plant related to morning glory. It is considered an invasive species in non-native areas because it competes with other plants for sunlight and moisture. Field bindweed is very hard to eradicate because its taproots grow so deep and its seeds can remain viable for decades.
Mexican Pepperleaf
Mexican Pepperleaf
Mexican Pepperleaf goes by many other names, including Piper auritum, rootbeer tree, and hoja santa. In Spanish, hoja santa means ‘sacred leaf,’ however, the name rootbeer tree comes from the rootbeer-like fragrance of the leaves when they are crushed. This aromatic herb is widely used in Mexican cooking.
Para grass
Para grass
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Weeping willow
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Weeping willow (Salix babylonica) is a willow tree that originates in China. Now, it grows widely around the globe due to being traded on the Silk Road. This tree is planted ornamentally in parks and gardens.
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French rose (Rosa gallica) is a flowering deciduous shrub native to central and southern Europe. It was one of the first rose species to be cultivated in Europe; french rose got its domesticated start with ancient Greeks and Romans, and was later used in medieval gardens. Today, this cold-tolerant flower's numerous cultivars adorn gardens worldwide.
Mexican petunia
Mexican petunia
Mexican petunia (Ruellia simplex) is an evergreen herbaceous perennial recognized by its wrinkly, trumpet-shaped purple flowers. It is commonly cultivated as an ornamental plant. Due to its vigorous spreading ability, Ruellia simplex has become widely naturalized outside Mexico. It is considered an invasive species in many countries.
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About
Care Guide
Care FAQ
Pests & Diseases
Weed Control
Distribution
More Info
Related Plants
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Common reed
Common reed
Common reed
Common reed
Common reed
Common reed
Add to My Garden
Common reed
Phragmites australis
Water
Twice per week
Water
Weeds
care guide

Care Guide for Common reed

Water
Water
Aquatic plant, can be cultivated in water.
Soil
Soil
Sand, Chalky, Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline
Sunlight
Sunlight
Full sun, Partial sun
Hardiness Zones
Hardiness Zones
5 - 8
Planting Time
Planting Time
Fall
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Tips, advice, and instructions for over 13,000 species that you will find nowhere else
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Common reed
Phragmites australis
Water
Water
Twice per week
Hardiness Zones
Hardiness Zones
5 - 8
Planting Time
Planting Time
Fall
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Questions About Common reed

Watering Watering Watering
How Often to Water Your Common reed?
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What Should I Be Careful with When I Water My Common reed in Different Seasons, Climate or During Different Growing Periods of My Plants?
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What to Do If Your Water Common reed Too Much or Too Little?
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pests

Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Common reed based on 10 million real cases
Plant dried up
Plant dried up  Plant dried up  Plant dried up
The entire plant may dry out due to dieback or normal seasonal dormancy.
Solutions: The solution for a dried out plant depends on the cause, so determine the cause before selecting a treatment method. Adjust your watering: Stick your finger in the soil near the roots. If it feels bone dry or overly saturated, you need to adjust your watering frequency accordingly. Prune back dead foliage: Snip off any brown stems and leaves on the plant to make space for new growth. This encourages the roots to send up fresh stems. Move to a proper environment. This may involve decreasing or increasing sun exposure, depending on the species. Decrease fertilizer applications. If you have applied too much fertilizer, you can repot plants with fresh potting soil. Wait. If your plant has dried out as daylight is decreasing, it is entering dormancy. Decrease watering and wait until the plant resumes growth.
Learn More more
Underwatering
Underwatering  Underwatering  Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Solutions: The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with. Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock. In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Learn More more
Leaf scorch
Leaf scorch  Leaf scorch  Leaf scorch
Leaf blight causes leaves to dry out and turn brown starting at their tips.
Solutions: The solution to leaf scorch will depend on the cause, however, in general all cultural care methods that improve plant health and root functionality will reduce symptoms. Mulching the root zone (preferably with wood chip mulch) helps retain moisture, reduce evaporation, and promotes a healthy, functional root environment that is critical for water movement to the leaves. Check the root collar for girdling or circling roots that strangle the trunk and limit water and nutrient movement. Protect trees from severe root damage of nearby construction and excavation. If fertilizer burn is to blame, irrigate the soil deeply to flush out excess fertilizer salts. However, keep in mind that fertilizer runoff is an environmental pollutant. Avoiding excess fertilization in the first place is the best approach. If soil testing has revealed a potassium deficiency, apply a potassium fertilizer and water well. Even if you have enough potassium in the soil, plants will not be able to take it up if the soil is consistently too dry. Severely affected twigs may be removed using a pair of sharp and sanitized pruning shears, as weakened branches are susceptible to secondary infections. If your plant has bacterial leaf scorch, there is no cure. Antibiotic injections applied by a professional can reduce symptoms for a season, however, the above cultural management methods are the best options to reduce symptoms and prolong life. An infected plant will likely die within ten years.
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Plant dried up
plant poor
Plant dried up
The entire plant may dry out due to dieback or normal seasonal dormancy.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Your plant has dried out and turned brown. It might be starting to wilt, with no noticeable green around the stems and leaves. Touch the leaves, and they may crinkle under your fingers.
Possible causes of a dried out plant include:
  1. Not enough water. A lack of water will lead to dry plant tissue.
  2. Too much water. Watering too much can lead to root rot which makes the plant struggle to take up water. Rotted, mushy roots are a sign of overeating.
  3. Entering dormancy. As perennial plants enter their resting period known as dormancy, their leaves dry out and may fall off. This happens during decreasing day length.
  4. Exposure to herbicides and other toxic substances. If a plant is hit with a large dose herbicide or other toxic chemical, the plant will turn brown.
  5. Too much fertility. An excess of fertilizer can prevent plants from taking up water, leading to drying.
  6. Improper sun exposure. Just like humans, plants can get sunburn by intense, direct light. Plants can also dry out if they don’t receive enough light.
To determine whether the plant is still alive and can be saved, you can:
  1. Bend a stem. If the stem is pliable, the plant is still alive. If the stem breaks, the plant is dead.
  2. Gently scratch the stem with your fingernail for signs of green inside. If your plant is dead, the stem will be brittle and brown throughout.
  3. Cut the stems back a little bit a time for visible green growth. If none of the stems have visible green growth, the plant is dead.
Solutions
Solutions
The solution for a dried out plant depends on the cause, so determine the cause before selecting a treatment method.
  1. Adjust your watering: Stick your finger in the soil near the roots. If it feels bone dry or overly saturated, you need to adjust your watering frequency accordingly.
  2. Prune back dead foliage: Snip off any brown stems and leaves on the plant to make space for new growth. This encourages the roots to send up fresh stems.
  3. Move to a proper environment. This may involve decreasing or increasing sun exposure, depending on the species.
  4. Decrease fertilizer applications. If you have applied too much fertilizer, you can repot plants with fresh potting soil.
  5. Wait. If your plant has dried out as daylight is decreasing, it is entering dormancy. Decrease watering and wait until the plant resumes growth.
Prevention
Prevention
Prevention involves providing your plant with the proper environment.
  1. Provide the proper amount of water. The amount of water depends on a plant’s size, species, and environment. A general rule is to allow soil to dry out between waterings.
  2. Place plants in the proper environment. Provide the proper hours of sun and temperature for your individual plant.
  3. Provide proper fertility. Most plants only need to be fertilized once or twice a year; don’t overapply.
  4. Keep plants free from toxic substances. Keep herbicides and toxic household chemicals away from your plants.
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Underwatering
plant poor
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Underwatering plants is one of the quickest ways to kill them. This is something that most gardeners are well aware of. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how much water a plant needs can be tricky, especially considering that underwatering and overwatering present similar symptoms in plants.
Therefore, it’s important to be vigilant and attentive to each plants’ individual needs.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
As mentioned earlier, overwatering and underwatering present similar symptoms in plants. These symptoms include poor growth, wilted leaves, defoliation, and brown leaf tips or margins. Ultimately, both underwatering and overwatering can lead to the death of a plant.
The easiest way to determine whether a plant has too much water or too little is to look at the leaves. If underwatering is the culprit, the leaves will look brown and crunchy, while if it’s overwatering, they will appear yellow or a pale green in color.
When this issue first begins, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all, particularly in hardy or drought-tolerant plants. However, they will begin to wilt once they start suffering from a lack of water. The edges of the plant’s leaves will become brown or curled. Soil pulling away from the edges of the planter is a telltale sign, or a crispy, brittle stem.
Prolonged underwatering can cause a plant’s growth to become stunted. The leaves might drop and the plant can be more susceptible to pest infestations, too.
DiseaseCause
DiseaseCause
Underwatering is caused by, quite simply, not watering plants often or deeply enough. There is a heightened risk of underwatering if any of these situations apply:
  • Extreme heat and dry weather (when growing outdoors)
  • Grow lights or indoor lighting that is too bright or intense for the type of plant
  • Using fast-draining growing media such as sand
Solutions
Solutions
The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with.
Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock.
In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Prevention
Prevention
Always check the soil before watering. If the top inch of soil feels moist, though not wet, the watering is perfect. If it’s dry, water it immediately. If it feels soggy, you avoid watering until it dries out a bit more.
Also, make sure the lighting is sufficient for the species. Plants grow faster and need more water when there is intense light or lots of heat. Being aware of these conditions and modifying them, if possible, is a good way to prevent underwatering. Many container plants are potted in soil mixtures mean to be well-draining. Adding materials that retain moisture, like compost or peat moss, can also prevent these symptoms.
Other tips to prevent underwatering include:
  • Choose pots with adequately-sized drainage holes
  • Avoid warm temperatures
  • Use large pots with additional soil (these take longer to dry out)
  • Avoid terracotta pots, which lose water quickly
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Leaf scorch
plant poor
Leaf scorch
Leaf blight causes leaves to dry out and turn brown starting at their tips.
DiseaseOverview
DiseaseOverview
Leaf scorch refers to two general conditions: physiological leaf scorch and bacterial leaf scorch. It causes leaves to discolor starting along the margins, and eventually die.
Leaf scorch development is most common in the hot, dry season, becoming most noticeable in late summer. However, it can occur at other times of the year. It most often affects young trees and shrubs, but it can also affect flowers, vegetables, and other plants.
Leaf scorch can get progressively worse over multiple seasons. If the root causes are not addressed, leaf scorch can lead to plant death.
While you cannot reverse the damage caused by physiological leaf scorch, you can prevent further damage. With proper management, plants will fully recover. However, there is no cure for bacterial leaf scorch, which is a systemic infection.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
  • Yellow, brown, or blackened leaves starting with the leaf margins
  • Dying twig tips on trees and shrubs as leaves die and fall
  • Often there is a bright yellow border line between the dead and living leaf tissue
DiseaseCause
DiseaseCause
There are numerous contributing causes of leaf scorch.
Bacterial leaf scorch is caused by the bacterium Xylella fastidiosa. The bacteria block the xylem vessels, preventing water movement. Symptoms may vary across species.
Physiological leaf scorch most commonly occurs when a plant cannot take up enough water. Numerous conditions can lead to this issue, particularly an unhealthy root system. Some causes of an unhealthy root system include overly-compacted soil, recent tillage, root compaction and severing due to pavement or other construction, drought, and overly-saturated soils.
Potassium deficiency can contribute to leaf scorch. Since plants need potassium to move water, they cannot properly move water when there is a lack of potassium.
Too much fertilizer can also cause leaf scorch symptoms. The accumulation of salts (including nutrient salts from fertilizers, as well as salt water) accumulate at the leaf margins and may build up to concentrations that burn the tissues.
Solutions
Solutions
The solution to leaf scorch will depend on the cause, however, in general all cultural care methods that improve plant health and root functionality will reduce symptoms.
  • Mulching the root zone (preferably with wood chip mulch) helps retain moisture, reduce evaporation, and promotes a healthy, functional root environment that is critical for water movement to the leaves.
  • Check the root collar for girdling or circling roots that strangle the trunk and limit water and nutrient movement.
  • Protect trees from severe root damage of nearby construction and excavation.
  • If fertilizer burn is to blame, irrigate the soil deeply to flush out excess fertilizer salts. However, keep in mind that fertilizer runoff is an environmental pollutant. Avoiding excess fertilization in the first place is the best approach.
  • If soil testing has revealed a potassium deficiency, apply a potassium fertilizer and water well. Even if you have enough potassium in the soil, plants will not be able to take it up if the soil is consistently too dry.
  • Severely affected twigs may be removed using a pair of sharp and sanitized pruning shears, as weakened branches are susceptible to secondary infections.
  • If your plant has bacterial leaf scorch, there is no cure. Antibiotic injections applied by a professional can reduce symptoms for a season, however, the above cultural management methods are the best options to reduce symptoms and prolong life. An infected plant will likely die within ten years.
Prevention
Prevention
  • Physiological leaf scorch is best avoided by making sure your plants have a healthy, functional root system and access to enough water. Water regularly, especially on the mornings of excessively hot, sunny days. Deep, infrequent irrigation is better than shallow, frequent irrigation.
  • Have your soil tested and apply the proper nutrients. Be sure to not over-apply fertilizers.
  • Make sure your plants’ roots have room to expand. Avoid compacted soil as well and avoid paving areas above the root zone. Do not till or disturb the soil where plant roots are growing.
  • Plant new trees and shrubs in the fall, so that they have the maximum amount of time to become established before the environmental stresses of the next summer.
  • Remove any dead or dying plant tissue that may harbor secondary infections.
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weed

Weed Control

weed
Weeds
Common reed is a tall grass weed growing widely across the United States and Canada. Its habitats include shorelines, riverbanks, and meadows. It is difficult to eliminate once rooted, and so not suitable for planting in small areas. It appears on state invasive species lists or laws in much of the eastern United States and Alaska, and state law in several western states from Colorado and Utah to Idaho and Washington. The grass displaces native species, blocks sunlight to the surrounding community, and increases fire potential. For control, cut stems below the lowest leaf. For large patches, cutting the perimeter prevents expansion.
How to Control it
The common reed can be largely controlled by regular cutting, hand-pulling, and digging. Though time-consuming and laborious, these activities won't actually eradicate the weed, but they can reduce its growth and further spread if conducted repeatedly and thoroughly (and before seeds mature). The best time to cut is near the end of summer. You can use black plastic wrap to cover the area after the cutting. Leave the wrap during the entire growing season. The high temperatures under the plastic wrap can eventually kill off the common reed. The most effective chemical treatments are those involving glyphosate and imazapyr.
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distribution

Distribution Map

Habitat

Shallow water

Map

distribution map
Native
Cultivated
Invasive
Potentially invasive
Exotic
No species reported
plant_info

More Info

Plant Type
Plant Type
Herb
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Summer, Fall
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green
Blue
Brown

Symbolism

Protection

Scientific Classification

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