Don’s Expert Answers: Sparse leaves

Question From:
Louise Korte in Mitchell Park , SA South Australia

Nature of problem:
Sparse leaves

Type of Plant (if known):
Magnolia little gem

Symptoms of Plant Illness (please try NOT to diagnose your problems yourself):
Leaves only on tips branches

Soil Type (e.g. sandy, clay or loam) OR Potting Mix Type:
Loam and mulch mixed in. Recently pea straw mixed on top

How often do you water the plant:
3 times week

How many hours of sunlight does the plant get each day:
Most of the day. Has scatted shade from large trees in neighboring yards

How long since you planted it:
4-5 months

Have you fertilised? If so, with what and when:
Mushroom compost soon after planting

Is the plant indoors or outdoors:

Is the plant in a pot or in the ground:

What other treatments have you given the plant:

Upload photo if available:

Other Comments:
These were transplanted from another persons yard, maybe they weren’t watered enough before we got them not sure… Is it possible to get new leaves growing back on sparse branches?

Hi Louise, that magnolia is winding down to die. You can save it (maybe) by transplanting it in August. Maybe the soil is water-repelling, so the water is not getting to the roots. When you dig it up, check to see how dry the root ball is. If dry, dunk it in a solution of Saturaid, plant it, then pour the rest of the Saturaid/water onto the soil around the plant. It needs full sun for most of the day. Don