Ceanothus carmel creeper

gobluedjmSeptember 13, 2010

Below is a pic of my carmel creeper with just one branch dieing off. Its 3.5 years in the ground and 12+ feet wide.

The branch is still very firm not soft and squishy.

Further out on the branch where it's dead it isn't black and you can see 2 smaller branches growing out of the black...but I expect them to die off also.

The rest of the plant is all very healthy.

I've been searching on this black damage and found nothing.

Anybody know what could be wrong?

I guess I should cut the 4 feet off since dead probably a couple inches back into green.

I am very surprised it did this well in my zone.

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Cenaothus does get a couple of stem canker diseases as well as borers, all of which would lead to symptoms as seen in your photo.


    Bookmark   September 13, 2010 at 6:39PM
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Ok, thanks Joe. This all happened in just a few days.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2010 at 7:01PM
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I planted 50 Carmel Creeper here in 1990 to cover a bare bank having a few Douglas firs and a lot of weeds. I planted them 6 feet apart with the rain in the fall. I could only afford to buy them in liners(papers actually)because I needed so many. The ground froze in December 1990 and forced some out of the ground. I lost some because I was not living on the property. They grew well up to about four feet covering the ground well and preventing most weeds and not requiring summer water. Only once did the deer eat them, taking about 2 feet off the top, which I think actually was a benefit. Wild blackberry got started in some of them and no matter how careful I sprayed the blackberry some got on the ceanothus and was very effective at killing them. They are easy to start from cuttings and I keep some ready in one gallon size to replace plants lost. I have never had your problem but would cut it out if I did. Al

    Bookmark   September 15, 2010 at 6:33AM
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A1, what did you start the cuttings in? I've read sand or sand and peat or peat and perlite in 2 native books I have.
I want to take some cuttings from my tessajara blue.
I did cut off about 5 feet back a few inches from the damage. I am going to take your advice on taking cuttings of it. I've also read to keep moist of course and cover with plastic bag.

Any advice on starting cuttings would be very much appreciated.

Thank you!

    Bookmark   September 15, 2010 at 8:51AM
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I use tip cuttings about 6 inches long removing all but one or two leaves at the tip, which will be small. I start four in a square four inch plastic pot. I use a mix of 80% perlite and 20% peat. I use four bamboo sticks about a foot long and tent with a clear plastic bread wrapper. A rubber band goes around the pot sealing the plastic to the pot. I keep the pot on a 70 degree bottom heat. Every other day I remove the tent and turn it inside out removing excess moisture from condensation which is likely to cause mold on the soil. Put the bag back on. After about a month you may notice the plastic is no longer condensing on the inside. This is a sign the mix is getting dry. While the plastic is off set the pot in a water bath for a couple of minutes. Do not assume you are growing roots for at least 2 months. You should see some new leaves growing but that does not mean you have roots. With a little practice a tug on the cutting will tell you if you have roots. If you pull one with no roots just put it right back. I always use a weak hormone #1 in most brands. I do most of my cuttings in the winter. Al

    Bookmark   September 15, 2010 at 8:18PM
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OK thank you!
So you water from the bottom then.
I just happen to have everything I need with a little too much fall heat so will wait a few weeks.
Tessajara blue is already showing buds so will have to be careful and use the interior branches for cuttings.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2010 at 9:02PM
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This dying off has happened to a couple of my ceanothus. I am assuming it is a disease as Joe stated. I just cut mine off. I am wondering, however, if it could be lack of water, as this seems to only happen during our 100 degree summers here in Temecula. What would you say, Joe?

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 12:00PM
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