Bedding plants

Flame Tree - Detect and fight diseases and pests

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The flame tree rarely shows diseases or pests. Some things have to be observed, especially with container plants, to prevent infestation.

© etfoto - Fotolia.com With its magnificent blossom, the flame tree (Delonix Regia) transforms your garden into a sea of ​​colors. In addition to the fiery red blossom, the spreading tree top is an expressive sight and a welcome shade in summer. Flame trees impress with exotic charm and it is surprising that they are actually quite easy-care plants. If you follow some care instructions, the flame tree will delight you with vigorous growth and abundant flowering. We will tell you below which diseases and pests do occur and what you can do about them.

Pests on the flame tree

There are hardly any pests on the flame tree, only during the winter months can pests nest. It is therefore important to keep an eye on flame trees even during the winter months and to check for any infestation.

Which pests can occur?

  • White fly
  • Scale insects

“White fly

If yellow leaves appear on the plant, the leaves dry up and are finally thrown off, the white fly infestation can be the cause. The pests cannot be missed and fly in droves as you get closer to the tree. If you have found an acute infestation, the use of appropriate plant protection products helps. So that it doesn't come to this, commercially available yellow boards can be used. These are simply hung in the tree and prevent the pests from spreading.

»Scale insects

If the plant withers visibly during the winter months, scale insects could be behind it. You can easily determine this by taking a closer look at the individual parts of the plant. Scale insects are clearly visible to the naked eye and usually form dense and crusty deposits on the leaves or stems of the tree. If the infestation is detected in good time, the pests can usually be removed easily by spraying the plant with soapy water or simply brushing off the scale insects. Only in the case of advanced infestation should you use appropriate pesticides to save the flame tree.

What diseases are observed?

The flame tree is generally quite robust and is rarely affected by diseases. However, the following diseases can occasionally occur:

  • mildew
  • rust

»Powdery mildew - appearance, control and prevention

© majuroan - Fotolia.com Powdery mildew is widespread and occurs in over 100 different species. Some varieties, such as powdery mildew, are species-specific and can only be detected on certain plants. A general distinction is made between powdery mildew and powdery mildew. Powdery mildew is considered a good weather fungus and usually arises when it is too warm and too dry.

Downy mildew is important for the flame tree. The mushroom feels comfortable in a moist environment and is also referred to as a “bad weather mushroom”. In addition to ornamental plants, numerous useful plants such as lettuce, spinach, onions or cabbage are also affected. Downy mildew is clearly visible on both sides of the leaf. The undersides of the leaves are covered with a white coating. In addition, there is usually a grayish down. The tops of the leaves lose leaf green in places and yellow spots appear. The leaves dry up and eventually fall off.

Attention: If downy mildew is left untreated, the entire tree can die.

If you notice the infestation, the relevant leaves must be removed quickly. These do not belong on the compost, but are to be incinerated or disposed of with household waste. Downy mildew can be combated very naturally. Broths and tinctures made from garlic, horsetail or tansy have proven their worth.

How can mildew be prevented?

If the flame tree is too wet, mildew is almost inevitable. Do not water excessively and check the substrate in tub plants. If it feels damp, it is not watered. Waterlogging should be avoided in any case. The choice of location also has to be considered: If the plants are too narrow, this favors the fungal attack. Sufficient light and sun should be able to reach the flame tree. Regularly remove the weeds around the flame tree, the fungus can also nest there and then spread to the flame tree. Mildew can be avoided by the targeted use of some plants.

The following herbs are therefore suitable as planting and underplanting:

  • chives
  • chervil
  • basil

»Rust on the flame tree - what should be considered?

© TwilightArtPictures - Fotolia.com Rust can also develop if the flame tree is too wet. A protected location is therefore recommended, so that heavy rainfalls cannot reach the plant unhindered. First notice the rust attack on the top of the leaves. There appear yellow-brown spots that extend over the entire surface of the leaves. A short time later, the underside of the leaf is also affected, because the fungal spores spread here. These are recognizable in the form of pustules, which form exactly opposite the leaf discoloration.

Rust can take on different colors. Initially, the rust spots can appear yellow or orange, in the later development stage the rust is more reddish brown. The leaves wither and finally fall off. Most of the time only the leaves are affected, rusting of shoots and sprouts is also possible. The plant is rapidly withering and hardly blooming. Mostly, the flame trees survive the rust disease relatively unscathed.

Rust spreads quickly. If the spore beds, which are recognizable as pustules, burst open, the wind carries the spore powder to other plants, where all that is required is a moist environment and the disease has broken out again.

How can you fight rust?

If the disease is recognized in good time, it can be combated very easily. Immediately remove all infected plant parts.

Tip: Leaves lying on the ground must also be removed and destroyed. Otherwise, the fungus can spread freely.

Removed parts of plants do not belong on the compost, the fungus can spread there without hindrance. If you cut back into healthy wood, the infestation is usually contained and the flame tree grows back healthy.

How can rust be prevented?

Always water the plant from below and save the leaves. A protected location makes sense so that the leaves are not affected by moisture for too long, for example after heavy rain. Vigorous plants are generally less affected by diseases. Ensure a balanced fertilization and strengthen the flame tree with natural means, for example the regular use of horsetail herb broth.

Avoid maintenance errors

It is not uncommon for growth disturbances and restrictions on the abundance of flowers to arise due to maintenance errors. Coarser mistakes, such as a too wet stand, are the main cause of the occurrence of diseases.

You can get healthy and strong plants if:

  • a bright location is selected for the flame tree
  • the flame tree is not too sunny
  • sufficient space is granted to the flame tree
  • the flame tree is placed away from the wind
  • the flame tree wintered bright and warm
  • the flame tree receives high-quality potting soil - mixed with gravel or expanded clay

Overview of flame tree care tips

care measureExplanation
to waterThe flame tree only needs regular and sufficient watering immediately after planting. Otherwise, watering is moderate. Waterlogging should be avoided in any case.
FertilizeFlame trees should be supplied with sufficient nutrients. Fertilize approximately every three weeks between May and October. A field horsetail broth can be used as a general tonic.
repottingIf the planter has become too small, the flame tree can no longer develop optimally, making it more vulnerable to diseases. The plant should be placed in a new container approximately every two years. It is also important to replace the substrate, which will wear out over time.

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