Cape Honeysuckle

jaybolliJune 23, 2006

I need help saving a Cape Honeysuckle that seems to be dying. It has been established for 2 years and covers a 5ft. tall by 8-ft wide space. Since the heat has kicked in the plant has begun yellowing. It was deep green and very healthy for the past 6 months. I water 3-4 times weekly for 20 minutes (about 5 gallons per watering).

Does this plant need any special nutrients I might have overlooked?

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I water 3-4 times weekly for 20 minutes (about 5 gallons per watering).

Too little water, too often. Give it a DEEP soaking and then don't water for a week, soak it again.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2006 at 10:53AM
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MaryMcP Zone 8b - Phx AZ

Jay, In addition to lazygarden's good advice, you might also give it a dose of chelated iron to help green up the leaves. I like to use a cocktail of 5-gallons of water with a few drops of SuperThrive and 2 or 3 tablespoons of chelated iron when plant leaves begin to yellow. The iron takes about 3 weeks to work its magic. HTH.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2006 at 11:44AM
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I've just planted two of these beauties... but in a section of yard that is on an irrigiation system that runs approximately 15 minutes twice a day. Does this mean I've screwed up and these two will die? Acccck! Or should I just terminate the irrigation near these two and hose-water once a week?

    Bookmark   May 6, 2007 at 9:40PM
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I have to water mine every day during the summer, deep soaking. Or else by the end of the day it is wilted...

I wonder what the difference is?

    Bookmark   May 11, 2007 at 1:52PM
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I don't know?!? But I see mine are wilting by day's end, so think I don't dare cut back on water. By deep soaking, are you just letting a hose lie (or irrigation drip) for more than 15 mins. or so? My irrigation runs for about 15-20 mins twice a day, and still I see some wilt and dried leaves... Don't want to loose these guys!


    Bookmark   May 18, 2007 at 11:32PM
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gemfire(z9/10 AZ)

I have one in the front of my house facing south. It get watered with the soaker hose 2 or 3 times a week. I let it run for about 45 minutes each time. Its doing great. But it's been there for well over 10 years.


    Bookmark   May 30, 2007 at 11:58PM
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It was on drip, but I that line started to have probs - so now I soak it with hose 1-2 times a day.

2 times if I remember, but it seems to pick right up after watering.

Good Luck!

    Bookmark   May 31, 2007 at 7:08AM
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Hi ! I live in low desert of Arizona; planted a cape honeysuckle end of was healthy and bushy and happy...until I fed it some epsom salts (magnesium sulfate) and within a week it keeled leaves, no nuthin' !

Was that co-inky dinky, or did I contribute to its demise ?? I transplanted it to another location in the hopes it would somehow be revived, but so far it looks like it's too late !

Any advice would be appreciated...

    Bookmark   June 9, 2009 at 10:59AM
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Epsom salts are commonly used to correct magnesium deficiency which is manifested by older leaves that
turn yellow at the edge leaving a green arrowhead shape in
the center of the leaf. This is especially common in roses.

To prevent this condition, apply onequarter cup of magnesium sulfate (epsom salts) to the plant two or three times per year. Do not over-apply.

You may have applied too much epsom salts. All salts (sodium, magnesium, chloride, potassium, etc.) can burn the roots of plants if over applied or if allowed to sit on top of dry soil without being watered in. All fertilizers should be applied to moist soil and watered in to avoid salt burn.

Instead of epsom salts, consider using a slow-release fertilzer. They are a little more expensive, but you only need to apply once or perhaps twice a year.

I hope this helps.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2009 at 11:55AM
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Thanks AZTREELVR ! I really appreciate the advice ! I have read many of your posts and appreciate your comments and extensive knowledge !

I may have gotten carried away with the epsom salts, but I always water it in...I discovered my roses and gardenia responds dramatically to it, so EVERYBODY got a dose !

Are you able to post a list of plants that DO NOT appreciate ES ? I realize it is probably an extensive list, but perhaps the ones that you think most commonly planted, particularly in the low desert (aka Bullhead City AZ)...

Thanks for your help !

    Bookmark   June 11, 2009 at 10:56AM
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I am considering the planting of my first Cape Honeysuckle. It's doing great though I haven't had a chance to plant it, it's still in it's original container for around a month now. It needs to be planted in spite of the intense heat here in Vegas. I see from your posts that they become quite large, and they seem to do well on fence lines and they don't seem to mind heat or full afternoon sun. So if anyone can help me out, should I plant it a distance from other plants, and should I give it space and should it have partial shade? Is it a climber, a bush or more of a tree?

On the subject of watering, I would like to share with you what my local gardening center shared with me when I started losing my Blueberry plantings. The lady I spoke to explained that watering plants everyday usually kept roots from "breathing". They also need oxygen, which overwatering prevents, by keeping the oxygen bound in the water molecules, preventing oxygen in the soil and from the roots. She stated that she gives a good watering to her plants once a week! Also that that was because they were well established and that new plantings required extra watering until they started showing growth, and then to cut back on watering them and just watch them, by sticking my finger a few inches into the soil to check the level of moisture.

She said also to realize that it is blisteringly hot out and most plants droop in the hottest part of the day, but recover in the late afternoon, so to check at sundown to see of they haven't recovered.

I have cut back my watering now, and I am seeing great improvement in my blueberries, and most of my other plants. A couple of my new plantings I have had to water a bit more, and I actually lost a couple of perennials, because I couldn't get to them soon enough. But I find if I check them at sundown and they need a bit of watering, then I don't seem to need to water them until two mornings later.

What is the best part is that my blueberries and most of the other plants are doing better. Their dried out, browned or yellowed leaves are being replaced by vibrant clusters of new growth. And of course, if they're in pots I check daily. Some of them, (like my Peppers) seem to like less waterings than daily. My Grapes, Squash, French Thyme, Cucumbers and Oregano prefer every other day, or even every two days. While my Day Lilly's prefer daily watering, and my Hibiscus hates watering more than twice a week, even in it's pot.

I also started fertilizing a very little bit by adding a very nice all around mix with water fertilizer, made by a company out west here, called Dr. Q's. I have started by using this once a week. It seems to replenish the soil and seems to fortify the plants, without burning them or forcing them to grow too quickly like some other less balanced plant foods do.

I was told that our goal is to encourage roots to find their own source of water, and towards that goal should be a watering once or twice a week and that's it, even in summer!

One of the things I started doing, is keeping a journal of all my various plants, since I forget once in a while of each of my plants' preferences. My grandmother was a master of gardening in here in the Southwest. I wish I had her knowledge and advice. She made it seem so easy.

Anyway, hope that helps!

    Bookmark   June 25, 2010 at 6:31PM
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I have a Cape Honeysuckle in Phoenix that has been in the ground for about 8 years. It's not gigantic - probably about 7ish feet tall and about as wide. Lots of branches, dead ones at the bottom which my dog loves to use to scratch his back.

It's a scrappy thing, I've abused it throughout the years, underwatered it (I also put it in a really stupid spot, as you'll see from the photo in the link), but it's a beauty when it's blooming and the hummers and butterflies really like it.

Needs a bit more water than a lot of desert trees (the desert willow and acacia on either side of it don't need nearly the water it does - that's why I've underwatered) and it can get a bit of sunburn in our blistering summer heat.

Overall, a sturdy, shrubby tree that is a real workhorse - even if it does need a little more water. I've never pruned mine or done anything to it other than water. No fertilizer, even. . .

hope that helps!

Here is a link that might be useful: My Cape Honeysuckle

    Bookmark   June 27, 2010 at 12:48PM
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