Forum home Problem solving

Newly planted privet hedge - leaves turning yellow and black


I'm hoping someone can offer some advice. We recently planted a wild privet (ligustrum vulgare) in the front garden. The leaves have started to turn yellow and in some cases a purplish brown. They've also got what I am guessing is some kind of fungus or powdery mildew, and several have started to fall off.

Has anyone experienced similar, or can offer any advice? Assuming it is powdery mildew, I've read that both milk and baking powder can help, as and alternative to going down the fungicide route.

Thanks in advance 🙏


  • AnniDAnniD South West UKPosts: 10,418
    Hello Jess  :)
    This is a bit tricky,although another forum member may have a more definite answer. 
    I'm wondering if it could be due to a drainage problem. 
    What sort of preparation did you do prior to planting ? How long have they been in the ground, and are they in a sunny or shady position? 
    If they're close to any footings of a pavement or driveway that may have a bearing on things as well.

  • I have read before that wild privet is some way deciduous so the change in leaf colour may just be down to the low temperatures and fresh green leaves may be produced by the plants in spring. The one I have seems to keep its leaves through most of the year but does look a bit more bare in winter. This information page backs up this description of the wild privet as deciduous and also mentions they can get a leaf spot. If the leaves do fall off then it may be helpful to collect them and dispose of them so that if it is a disease it will be less likely to infect newly formed leaves. The plants in my own garden that have at times shown signs of being effected by mildew have grown out of it on their own without doing anything to intervene but it can be a sign of stress so make sure there are no obvious factors that may be making your new hedge less vigorous.

    Happy gardening!
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,198
    Privet of any kind isn't truly evergreen, and in colder areas it's semi evergreen for large parts of winter, and drops foliage quite readily. It also gets blackened in cold spells. Most of the privet round here has large black/purple areas of foliage just now. 
    However, the mildew is odd at this time of year. Are you in the UK? What size are the plants and what conditions are they in? As @AnniD says - many factors can have an impact.
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

Sign In or Register to comment.