Don’s Expert Answers: magnolia leaves fall off and no flowers in winter

Question From:
kim in Merrylands, sydney New South Wales

Nature of problem:
magnolia leaves fall off and no flowers in winter

Type of Plant (if known):
magnolia with purple and white flowers

Symptoms of Plant Illness (please try NOT to diagnose your problems yourself):
yellow , dark spot in one side of leaves

Soil Type (e.g. sandy, clay or loam) OR Potting Mix Type:
potting mix 9.90

How often do you water the plant:
every second day

How many hours of sunlight does the plant get each day:
4 hours in summer and 2 hours in winter

How long since you planted it:
4 years

Have you fertilised? If so, with what and when:
yes use thrives flowers and fruit mix with Eco seaweed 1 teaspoon /each in 9 ltre of water every 4 or 5 days

Is the plant indoors or outdoors:

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

What other treatments have you given the plant:
re pot applied cow manure mix with good potting mix dynamic lifter

Upload photo if available:

Other Comments:
please advise me which fertilise i must apply so that magnolia tree will has flowers and full bloom again . I am very interesting to read your website especially your QA that give me a lot of understanding and knowledge….Thanks

Hi Kim, I can’t advise you which fertilisers to use because fertilising won’t help – fertilising is not the problem. I suggest that you re-pot this plant into the ground or into a larger container as it is probably the potting mix that is the problem. I suspect that the mix will be very dry due to being water-repelling. Get some Scott’s Everydrop soil wetting agent, add it to the water in a container large enough to take the entire root system,then immerse the root ball in it for 30 minutes. Lastly, plant the plant into the garden or into a premium quality potting mix. The plant is also not getting enough light. Magnolias prefer about 8 hours of direct sunlight every day of the year. Plants do not feed on fertilisers: they feed on sugars and starches that they manufacture from sunlight. Don