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Why have 3 plants died? (Photos)

I live in London with an NNE facing garden. The soil has a slightly clay tendency but fairly neutral and is enriched twice a year with organic matter. The garden is sheltered. In summer it reaches max 30° C here and in winter about 3° C.

Recently, I asked a local gardener to help do some tidying and moving. I noticed in the weeks after she left, three of the plants that she moved started to go downhill.

1/  The Photinia red Robin was happy in the corner of the garden. The soil isn’t the best in this border, but it is sheltered and was watered frequently. It’s now bald!

2/  The choisya hasn’t seemed happy in this back order, even though it gets more sun.  Granted, it hasn’t died but the leaves often seem wilted.

3/  The clematis armandii was retied in on its second year, but has now died. The fence is partly shaded, partly sunny.  It was fine last year.  This is in a raised bed where the soil is its best.

 Any ideas what happened to each, and any thoughts on whether any of them will bounceback or do I need to cut down and re-plant?

All were watered by hose regularly, except when we had that deluge in June!


  • madpenguinmadpenguin Posts: 2,535
    edited June 2019
    I think the Choisya is OK.It looks like 'Sundance' so leaves are naturally yellow.The brown bits look like leaf scorch to me.Cutting back may help as I find Choisya readily sprout out.

    No idea about the C.armandii but you could cut off all the dead stuff and see if it sprouts from the base.

    The Photinia could be OK.I had one that I wanted to get rid of and I cut it right down,for 2 years it continued to send out new shoots (it has finally given up now!).
    So you could try cutting it back and see what happens.

    Others here may have something more to contribute!
    “Every day is ordinary, until it isn't.” - Bernard Cornwell-Death of Kings
  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,700
    edited June 2019
    Any moving of shrubs will require a lot of watering at this time of year. The ideal way is to cut down the shrubs to minimise loss of water to the plants. I would get watering into the base of those shrubs that have been moved. Avoid spraying water onto the leaves.

    The Choisya has some leaf scorching around the tips, that's usually through liquid on the leaf surface whilst the sun is out. Best time to water plants are in the evenings or early mornings, directing water right into the base. At least 2 buckets each shrub every other day if it's this warm, easing down to twice a week if it's a little cooler.

    I would prune out some of the thin branches of the Photinia to see if that encourages new shoots. Clematis Armandii may have died back due to the lack of water. Without seeing the base, it's hard to tell if it's dead or not, but it is not looking good at the moment. 

  • HelixHelix Posts: 631
    Moving plants in growth, and during hot weather, is always a risky business.  Especially clematis that can resent root disturbance.  As others have said, cut them back, water them well and hope.  Although the clematis does look pretty terminal from these photos.
  • This is all great sleuthing, thank you so much.
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