Saturday, September 02, 2006

Virus Attack

After four months of blooms, the hollyhocks are still going strong and, although the stems are getting a bit straggly, I haven’t the heart to pull them out yet. I’m going to have to though as one has got what appears to be mosaic virus (see below). I’m a bit worried about it – I can destroy the plant and change the soil in the container, but the container itself is a large stone pot which is far too heavy to move or tip up. So disinfecting it would be a big problem. I can’t just pour in disinfectant as it would run straight out of the drainage holes – and straight onto the balcony below. But I’d like to grow more hollyhocks in the same place next year and I’m worried that the virus will just be passed straight on. I've already got a lot of young plants coming on, but sadly, my favourite purply red flowers didn't produce seeds. I don't know why. It bloomed as well as the others, though a bit later, but just didn't produce seed pods.

My pelargoniums also seem to be having problems. I noticed this problem of leaf colour (photo below) a few weeks ago. I thought it was a nutrition deficiency problem, so changed the top layer of soil and fed the plant fairly generously. But now it’s appeared in a second pot and I’m wondering whether it too isn’t a virus. I really hope not, because it’s attacked a huge plant which I’d be very loathe to lose, and which I was about to take cuttings from. Does anyone recognise it?

1 comment:

roybe said...

Hello Sue thank you for visiting my blog and for your kind comments. I'm sorry I can't help much on plant diseases, but it doesn't look to bad . Probably a prune and a feed should fix it maybe. We've just planted some Geraniums and Pelargoniums (I'm not sure what the difference is) to create a bit of a mediterannean look. they give a lot of colour and grow so well from cuttings as you probably know. I was reading your comments about the challenges of having a balcony garden and going away. I was wondering if your winters are not too cold you could grow Hoyas They don't need a lot of water and looking after and have beautiful flowers. The Swedes are mad on them, an interesting website is Happy gardening Sue.

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