Don’s Expert Answers: 2 yrs old in shady spot stayed spindly, never bushed out , want to transplant to location with more light , how avoid shock.

Question From:
in Palos Verdes Estat, Palos Verdes Estat New South Wales

Nature of problem:
2 yrs old in shady spot stayed spindly, never bushed out , want to transplant to location with more light , how avoid shock.

Type of Plant (if known):
Brunfelsia bonodora

Symptoms of Plant Illness (please try NOT to diagnose your problems yourself):
No bug problem that I can detect, what leaves that ever showed seemed healthy

Soil Type (e.g. sandy, clay or loam) OR Potting Mix Type:
loam, some clay enriched when planted bush

How often do you water the plant:
3x week on sprinkler system

How many hours of sunlight does the plant get each day:
1-2 hr, morning or late afternoon

How long since you planted it:
2 yrs

Have you fertilised? If so, with what and when:
yes, about 6 mos ago, with acid mix 4-3-6 from my nursery

Is the plant indoors or outdoors:

Is the plant in a pot or in the ground:
In ground

What other treatments have you given the plant:

Upload photo if available:

Other Comments:
There is still life on it even tho at first glance it looks like a bunch of sticks, there are small
leaf buds on the branches. That is why I want to give it a new location , one with more light and
afternoon sun. I’m just not sure how to specifically go about transplanting without shocking the
plant. Somewhere I read about using Vit. B to avoid shock. I am located in So. CA. where the
climate at this time of year never dips below 40 degrees and is warming above 60 these days.
Do I have to wait another month or two or can I transplant now? I had high hopes for this plant
after I saw it in someone’s back yard. So I felt perhaps it just was the wrong location (too shady)
and I shouldn’t give up on it just yet.
Bottom line:
If transplanting is recommended please be specific, , how deep, what kind of fertilizer,, number,brand?
Whatever you think will help this novice gardener will be greatly appreciated. Don’t assume I know
what I’m doing.
Thanks for you timel

I guess you are in NSW?
Your Brunfelsia is dying for lack of food. Plants make their own food from sunlight and Brunfelsias need full sun all day. Yours is winding down to die, but they are very hardy and maybe it can recover (maybe a 10% chance of survival). I feel that moving it now may kill it, but not moving it may kill it too. So move it to a sunny position, trying to get as much of the roots as you can. Try very hard not too disturb the roots as you plant it. Gently plant it with a saucer-shaped area of soil around the stem at ground level. Gently use the hose to flood around the plant until the saucer is full – do this several times over 5 minutes or so: flood it. Water it every 2 days until new shoots appear, then twice a week for 6 months or so. Do nothing else. Me? I would get a new Brunfelsia. Don