Forum home Problem solving

Will my Japanese maples recover, or did I killed them?:(


Last year I planted 3 beautiful Japanese maple trees (Acer palmatum). I spoted some caterpillars, which were eating tree leaves, so I used an insecticide, which uses permethrin as active ingredient. Insecticide is more for indoor use, but some are using it outdoors, i made a mistake.

Result: disaster, tree leaves are turning yellow and seem like they do not have any water in it and are burned.I used it a few days ago. Today I washed each tree 3 times with water from garden hose and put some Activated Charcoal on the ground.
The trees are about 50 cm high (1,64 feet).

What do you think, did I killed them, or will they recover? Wil new leaves grow or do I stand the chance in next season? What can I do? I am so sad. If tree leaves do not recover, then probably trees are dead.


  • AngieRAngieR Posts: 347

    I am unfamiliar with the product you have used but if I may share some of my own experience with you.  A few years back, when I first got into gardening, I had a japanese acer that was smothered in affids and I panicked and over treated the whole plant with bug clear or something similar.  It completely dropped all it's foliage.

    I was told that these plants will often drop their leaves if stressed and have a 2nd set of leaves in reserve for instances such as this.  I have no idea about the activated charcoal you have used since I have never heard of it.  I am hoping someone with more knowledge than I can help you out more than I've been able to. My plant did recover and put on more leaves.  

    Last edited: 22 April 2017 19:34:15

  • autumngloryautumnglory Posts: 255

    I don't think you'll have killed it, but it probably won't look good this year. The spray combined with the sun has probably just scorched the leaves. I lost all the leaves on mine one year, they didn't grow back that year but it was fine the next.

  • Mark56Mark56 Posts: 1,653

    Avoid spraying, horrific for the dwindling population of bees. Encourage birds by placing a feeding station directly above the aphid infested plant, especially at this time of year blue tits will hoover them up for their young. 

    Last edited: 23 April 2017 10:56:21

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 85,976

    I think autumnglory is right - they will survive and recover, eventually.  I think the best thing you can do now is to leave them alone apart from making sure they have enough water.  Don't fertilize them until they've recovered and have enough leaves to need and use the nutrition.

    I agree with Mark - there's rarely a need to spray if you encourage wildlife into your garden.

    And whatever you decide to do, don't spray unless you know what you're spraying against and, if you do decide to spray, use the correct product and FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS.  They've been written for a reason by people who understand how the product works.

    Good luck. image

    Last edited: 23 April 2017 11:02:03

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • HI! Thank you for your answers.image

    I am against spraying (I don't spray even apples), but since I planted them last year and the location is in front of my house I wanted them to be healthy and look good. At least I have some hope. I used a lot of water to try to wash the leaves. Today I have seen a few young leaves on Acer shirasawanum "Aureum". The other 2 trees look worse. Its too early to say anything... Hope I can save them. I am certain its not the soil, I was monitoring them regulary. At least there is a chance, they will be all right next season.

    I usually always follow the instructions, it happens, hard lesson.

Sign In or Register to comment.