Is my new Carambola tree Dying? (it's dropping it's leaves) :-(

johnathanjones(Zone 8)July 7, 2007

Hello everyone!

I've recently (yesterday) received an new 7-Gallon Carambola (Starfruit) tree from Jene's tropicals. Well anyway I took it out of it's box (it appears the top half and a couple of branches was pruned off already for shipping) I watered it with a 5-Gallon container filled with about two gallons of water and a cap-full of superthrive (NOT fertilizer)I also took some of that water and applied it to it's leaves. and put it in full sun. Well every since yesterday afternoon more and more of it's leaves are turning yellow and falling off and I'm getting extremely worried about it. Is my plant dying? Did I give it too much water? Was it the superthrive? Also... I was planning to plant it in a 17 gallon containter late next week should I wait longer than that (assuming it makes it?)

- Johnathan

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johnathanjones(Zone 8)

Also i'd like to prune it just a little bit more it looks a little lopsided is that okay?

- Johnathan

    Bookmark   July 7, 2007 at 7:30PM
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hello Johnathan,
just some things I've noticed, many times plants that I've ordered get leaves that yellow and fall off. This is probably shock, caused by transport, barerooting (?), lack of light, aclimatization from one environment to the other. For me when the plants first arrive, I plant them in a pot just bigger than the rootball. I water them with superthrive style stuff and most importantly plance them in a sheltered location. Filtered light until growth restarts then slowly acclimatize it to its spot.

good luck,

    Bookmark   July 8, 2007 at 1:06AM
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johnathanjones(Zone 8)

Thank you Ethan!

I do have a pecan tree I can put it under that gets partial sun during the day is that ok? And does anyone else have experience growing star fruit in containers? I tried a couple years ago and I lost the plants during a windy cold weekend and a freeze. (I was out of town when this occurred so I was unable do move them indoors). Do they fruit well in containers ? I have a 17 gallon/20 inch pot I was going to grow it in.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2007 at 9:03AM
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ohiojay(z6 OH)

Ethan is right. Get the tree out of full sun. It's been in a box for without any light at all for 2-3 days. I wouldn't put it in such a large container just yet. I'd wait until the tree stabilized and then go up to about a 10 gal. Also, as soon as it starts to get any low temps in your area, it's time to bring it in until next season. Good luck.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2007 at 12:46PM
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johnathanjones(Zone 8)

Thanks Guys since yesterday afternoon is has stabilized a little (it's only dropping leaves here & there) and it's in the shade under my pecan tree. :-). Should I wait until new growth occurs before I take it out of the shade and repot it?

    Bookmark   July 9, 2007 at 6:47PM
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hello Johnathan J,
for me (hot and dry here), I would leave it shaded for at least a week or until you see new growth, then slowly aclimate it to its spot.

My carambola is just a seedling but here are my thoughts on repotting: give it a week or two (or three) when you see active growth, move it to a larger pot. I would not reccomend moving it to a huge pot just yet. This is my experience, one plant I moved to a huge pot after purchase (last fall) I had difficulties planting in the ground this spring. The extra soil broke away from the rootball, taking all the new delicate roots with it. My other experience is overpotting and rot. This last winter another newly purchased plant was placed in a huge pot (it was going to stay potted). As winter progressed and cool spring arrived, I started watering more. The soil at the top of the pot would dry before the soil at the bottom. Before too long the soil smelled foul and the roots rotted. This is not the case with all plants, my guavas and solanums have such dense root systems, they jumped a pot size.

good luck,

    Bookmark   July 9, 2007 at 7:21PM
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johnathanjones(Zone 8)

Thank you for all of your guys help! :-).

    Bookmark   July 10, 2007 at 5:35PM
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johnathanjones(Zone 8)

Guys I have good news my tree has since been in full sun and new growth is occurring! Thanks again!

    Bookmark   July 17, 2007 at 11:00PM
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I just bought one of these trees today. It is a good size--around 6' and loaded with tiny flowers. As it is mid October, I am wondering..I had planned to plant it in the ground in about two weeks after allowing it to acclimate etc...I was wondering with it being fall already if I should wait until this spring to put it in the ground--will it make it in the pot until then or, as suggested above in one slightly larger than it is currently in (5 gallon plastic pot). Thanks!

    Bookmark   October 14, 2013 at 9:36AM
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