Leaves looking weird on citrus

timrod98(8)August 26, 2012

Hey Everybody,

I've been out for a while. I gifted several of my old, hand-propagated Meyers to several friends and got some new citrus varieties from Lowes in the Spring (great deals).

I am going to post several pics of plants that have a crinkled leaf thing going on. This has been going on for at least several months. Initially I looked for Leaf Miners and thought I found some so I Neemed them (and do so regularly). However, these leaves don't appear to have the Miners but do have some shiney coating on the underside.

I do water regularly, although it hasn't been necessary lately because it's rained almost every day for the past several weeks. I fertilize with Foliage Pro and mix in a cap of vinegar and a bit of epsom salts.

Any ideas???


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Tim! Hello buddy!

Why Epsom salts? I am not sure if you are aware of this, but it is possible to over due it on the Mg. I have never had an issue, but it may be one sign of over fertilizing with one particular nutrient and some kind of bug besides. I hope someone here whom is good at identifying will be by soon.

I hope you are enjoying your summer:-)))


    Bookmark   August 26, 2012 at 1:48PM
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    Bookmark   August 26, 2012 at 1:53PM
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Good question Mike... I may have misunderstood (not unusual for me) about adding epsom salts (magnesium) to watering can occaisionaly to assist in nutrient uptake. It is possible that I am torturing my plants. I have a Ph meter but a biology/plant student told me he doesn't have much faith in them...prefers chemical testing (like you test pool water) for accuracy. I'll see what others think and may omit the epsom for a while. These leaves really look tortured and misshapen.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2012 at 1:54PM
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Hey Tim..What I doooo know is that you can easily cause and antagonizing affect if over loading on one nutrient over another. Too much Mg can cause nutrient up take in certain other nutrients unavailable.

The Foliage Pro does carry more than enough Mg and Calcium. Actually, an over load of Mg can cause deficiencies in the other nutrients in the soil such as calcium and potassium.

Epsom salts, even sugar, affects plants in the same way that table salt or any other solute affects a plant's ability to absorb water through cell walls.

A tablespoon of Epsom salts would have exactly the same affect on water movement as a tablespoon of fertilizer, assuming they weighed the same. A tablespoon of Epsom salts alone probably isn't enough to do any damage, unless you used it in your fertilizer solution, or there was already a high level of solubles in the soil solution.

I would flush your soil with rain or fresh water for quite a while and get those salts out if any.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2012 at 3:54PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

How bad is the leaf miner issue I see? Anything suspicious observed on the underside of the leaves....like in those little bumps?

    Bookmark   August 27, 2012 at 8:03AM
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Hey Rhizo,
I believe I got the leaf miners with the Neem. And I have been applying regulary afterward. Some of the leaves have, what looks like an almost transluscent, shiny film on some of the leaves. We have had tons of rain in the past week (6 inches just the other day) so I would think the "soil" has been "cleansed". Some, not all, of the leaves just look gnarled-up.
I am monitoring. I have stopped adding Epsom and vinegar (capful to approx 1 1/2 gal watering can).
I will check the leaves again today.
Thanks for all of your help.
oh...my old Satsuma is blooming now, as are a couple of the other older plants (Meyers).

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 6:46PM
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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

OP wrote: "Some of the leaves have, what looks like an almost transluscent, shiny film on some of the leaves."

Yes, evidence of leaf miners between the upper and lower layers of the leaf. I doubt the neem did them in.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 10:05PM
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Thanks Jean....I think you are right!! After reading, and looking at pics, on another question in the forum I believe it is still a Leaf Miner investation. I treated the plants, almost all have some or a lot of symptoms, yesterday with Neem. However, we are getting a lot of rain so I'm not sure how effective it is. What else can I use to combat these invaders!!!! It's all out WAR now!!!
Thanks for your sharp eye. Many leaves DO have that translucent "film".

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 7:43AM
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I got the Spinosad from very good local nursery, Hyam's. I will start today with application (mixed with some Neem). I have given 2 of my old Meyers to my neighbor and he is reporting same symptoms....I'll treat his as well.
Thanks to you all for helping me with this mystery. Although I knew I had some leaf miner activity I did not know to what extent it could explode!!!!
Thanks again. h

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 3:43PM
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rain will wash away the spinosad. reapply it.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 1:13AM
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Gotcha houston....I thought it might. I will be drenching again, late afternoon. Forecast is for dry, although humid, weather for next few days.
Do leaves HAVE to be coated top AND BOTTOM??

    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 12:45PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

You should try to spray both sides of the leaves, Tim. The CLM moth lays the eggs on the undersides of the leaves. If you combine your Spinosad with either Neem or Volk Oil, it will last much, much longer. Just mix up your Spinosad in the sprayer. Then, in another container, mix up your Neem/Volk oil. Pour the oil mixture into your sprayer. Give it a shake to combine. Spray away. Just be sure your temps do not go above 85-86 degrees, or you can burn your leaves.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 1:08PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Hmmm, that's an odd way to make a tank mix....unless I'm misunderstanding. Each product would be over-diluted.

The amount of water should be determined first....the volume you know that you will use up in one application. Let's say that you need a quart (or whatever) of finished product. Pour about half of that water into the sprayer first. Then determine, according to label directions, how much of the neem you need for a quart of water...and how much spinosad....and pour those into the container with the water. Finish with the rest of the water. In other words, both products share the same one quart of water.

The same would be true if mixing for a hundred gallons of water. You don't end up with two hundred gallons of finished product...just one hundred, with the appropriate amount of each chemical measured for one hundred gallons.


    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 10:52AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Hmm, this is how I was told to mix the two products together, Rhizo. So far, it is working for me, but I can re-check this. Question - what if you were using two pre-mixed products? Wouldn't the water then be double? I see what you're saying, Rhizo, but then if you mixed two ready-to-use products, they would then be twice diluted??

Patty S.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 1:48PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Well, the concept of 'tank mixes ' is geared for those who are protecting agricultural crops, orchards, nurseries, golf courses, and similar. The directions for combinations are pretty explicit. And that's pretty much the extent of my experience. The efficacy of mixing ready-to-use products is really out of my comfort zone.

My sense of it is that the end result would be diluted....with the active ingredient in each being diluted with twice as much carrier (water) . It's not something that I would suggest.

In this particular example, I'd be tempted to use the spinosad as directed and add a very small amount of a horticultural oil as a sticker. Oils are often used that way.

Since we are both talking about mixing stuff together, it's probably a good idea to mention that these combinations can't be made with everything. Some 'brews ' can end up being downright dangerous, either for us or for the plant...or both.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 4:04PM
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After seeing those pictures, yep, it's salt burn! I used Epsom salt one time, and according to the dosages recommended on the bag, and I got the same results you have...the orange, curled, and burned leaves. I may try it again for the Mg nutrient, but i'll dilute it 2X over...Shouldn't hurt?

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 4:11PM
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