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Poorly Box

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My box is being attacked by something. It looks like a critter rather than blight.  There are lots of tiny egg-like things in it.  Could these be from that caterpillar which is now quite prevalent in defoliating Box?  We couldn't find any and the plant has lost very few leaves, but it is covered in the eggs all over inside. 

Posts

  • It may be that the caterpillars (look up 'box tree caterpillar') have eaten and gone off to pupate. It's about the right time. If they have been there, then you got off lightly! The webbing certainly looks like the stuff they spin to protect themselves. 

    H-C

  • Oh dear, well at least it's not the dreaded blight, although another of my Box has something that looks like blight.  Luckily we don't have much Box, and I won't be buying any more.  Sad, as the oldest plant that we have from various house moves is some Box that I bought nearly 20 years ago, although so far that particular one is doing very well at the moment (touch wood).

  • Like most fungal diseases, blight thrives in the humid air, and wet mild weather we've been 'blighted' with the last two winters. We need some good cold air and a proper winter (much as I struggle nowadays in the cold!) to cleanse the ground and some of the plants of bugs and grubs and disease. Keeping the plants healthy, but not overfed, is key. 

    H-C

  • Lily PillyLily Pilly Central southern Scotland Posts: 3,845

    We have masses of box. I refuse to give in to Blight and so feed the hedges with seaweed and try to keep the tops clean. I honestly think it is looking a bit better this year. I think you should hang on in there, especially if you have had the plant so long and it has sentimental meaning.  Re your "eggs" looked like rabbit droppings to me, I am away to check mine now and will post if I see similarimage

    Weeds are flowers, too, once you get to know them.”
    A A Milne
  • The eggs are tiny, the size of pin heads almost. I have given my Box the occasional foliar spray with liquid sea wood and we only prune them once a year now. 

    Pittosporum  has become our new go to plant instead of buying more Box. 

  • Lily PillyLily Pilly Central southern Scotland Posts: 3,845

    Probably very wise!

    Weeds are flowers, too, once you get to know them.”
    A A Milne
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    Finally found the culprits and it is the dreaded Box Tree Caterpillar and the infestation on some of our oldest and largest plants is quite bad. Strangely I don't mind it as much as blight as at least it's a critter that fits into the food chain.

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