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Mottled leaves on streptocarpus

Posted by harwichhelen Zone 7 MA (My Page) on
Sat, Jul 9, 11 at 19:27

Almost all of my streps have recently come down with the same problem: the leaves have a metallic brown-looking mottling on them, and the flowers are growing in on much shorter stems than before. I can't find a description of this problem anywhere...can someone help? I haven't done anything differently that I can think of. They are under fluorescent lights and also get a bit of late afternoon western sun. Could they be getting too much light? Thanks!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Mottled leaves on streptocarpus

I had an idea about this yesterday... Sometimes I mist with a very diluted concentration of fertilizer in water. Perhaps the mottling on the leaves is caused by that, so I'll stop doing it. I don't think they need the misting was probably to make me feel good more than to make them feel good!

RE: Mottled leaves on streptocarpus

Helen -

never saw anything "metallic" on them - so my guess could be off the point - but stunted look and brown edges on young leaves usually a sign of too much water. Short bloom stalks - means plant is getting old and it is a time to find a nice sucker on it - and restart the whole thing.

Otherwise - if you can post a pic - it will be great.

Good Luck


RE: Mottled leaves on streptocarpus

Helen, how far way are they from the lights? If you are misting them and they are too close my guess is they could be burning. Another possibility is the water may be too cold and causing water spotting but without a picture it is hard to say.

Are these plants small plants or mature plants? Mature plants that are getting old will do what irina says. On small plants it could be too much water or too much fertilizer and the build up is causing the stunting. Fertilizer build up is unlikely but it would not hurt to flush the pot with clear water and give the plants clear water for 2 weeks then resume with fertilizer at 1/4 rate each time you water. Every 4th watering with plain water to leach the soil so the fertilizer doesn't build up.

It would really help to see a picture of a plant showing the symptoms you are describing. These are only guesses as what possibly could be wrong on my part. The Violet Barn is a great resource on how to grow. Go to and look on the home page for the cultural section. You could email them and see what they suggest as well.


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