Recently, I have seen some of my friends having a problem with the blue star juniper plant, which is the blue star juniper turning brown. As I faced these last year, I identified some causes that may be responsible for this problem.
The problems can be mechanical damage, excessive watering, winter injury, salt problem, compacted root, soil quality and diseases. I did some experiments with my plants at that time and then found them all. I also found some more things which I want to describe so that you can also save your plant through those processes.
That’s why I am here to lead you to the solution. Here is a quick table on these causes and their solutions.
|Mechanical damage||Try to conduct intercultural operations smoothly|
|Excessive watering||Do not water much to your plant|
|Winter problem||Use mulches and polythene shed and water regularly|
|Compacted root||Continue root pruning|
|Salt injury||Use a little amount of salt if using is mandatory|
|Soil quality||Use sandy loam soil for planting which has high nutritive value.|
|Diseases||Use bactericides or fungicides.|
Blue Star Juniper Turning Brown – 8 Common Causes With Perfect Solutions
1. Mechanical Damage
What if any mechanical damage happens to your blue star juniper plant? Simply, it will initiate blue star juniper turning brown as the cells will be damaged in this case. Mechanical damage can be caused by humans or any other equipment which are used for different cultural operations of this plant.
If such an injury is done to the plant, the cells along with the vascular bundles are hampered. Due to the effect of vascular bundles, the food and nutrients cannot reach the upper parts of the plant where the leaves process food.
As a result, the plant cannot produce enough food for its foliage and stress is created which is expressed through brown leaves and brown stems.
You should continue the cultural practices consciously so that the plant is not affected. If any part of the plant is injured, try to bend the place as pathogenicity may occur. Apply water and fertilizers properly to heal the injury.
2. Excessive Watering
In the second phase, it is quite fair to talk about excessive watering as it is one of the major issues for the plant. In the case of much watering, the main problem that occurs is root rot.
The presence of exceeding water indicates poor aeration which is supposed to be a hazard to the plant. I am calling it a hazard because when aeration is reduced and the plant remains in the water logging situation, fungal attack increases.
Besides, another pathogen infection is also increased and lastly, the root system gets destroyed. Simply, when the root system is damaged, the plant cannot get enough materials for growth and development and food processing is inhibited which includes brown parts of the plants.
Don’t water your plants too much. Blue star juniper plants normally don’t need excessive amounts of water. So water your plant when it needs to. You can pinch your finger inside the soil to understand if the soil is dry or not.
If the root rot problem initiates and it goes out of hand, then complete the repotting procedure. Just uproot the plant, prepare a new and nutrient-enriched soil medium, and then plant it.
3. Winter Problem
The third one I am going to talk about is the winter problem. Though blue star juniper can withstand a wide range of temperatures, it cannot grow through too low temperatures. Such a temperature breaks down the normal activities of the plant.
When the water gets frozen, it becomes unavailable for the plant despite remaining in the soil zone. Again, frost remaining on the leaves creates barriers in the photosynthesis system.
Again, the plant cannot complete its entire developmental processes and reproductive stages due to the absence of favorable temperature. Thus, the plant starts to produce brown leaves.
To control winter damage, you should keep your plant inside the house. If it is importable, you can use a polythene sheet to cover the plant so that snowfall cannot affect it.
Most importantly, continue the watering process so that water may not freeze. But, at the same time, you should also think about the overwatering problem too. Thus, you may save your plant from frost injury.
4. Compacted Root
After that, I would like to talk about a different type of problem that may not occur due to environmental issues. The problem of compacted roots is seen whenever the plant cannot get enough space to expand its root system.
Sometimes, root elongation occurs due to the excessive secretion of auxin in the root zone. The roots become intermingled and they cannot grow further. They also become weak and cannot pass food materials to the leaves of the plant.
You can go for repotting if they are too dense. As I explained in the overwatering sector, you can complete the repotting procedure in that way. Choose a large-sized pot for that purpose so that your plant may not face such a problem again.
Else, you can also try root pruning. Remove the soil over the root consciously. Then cut the tangled roots with the help of a knife or scissors. But you should be technical and experienced for this case as it requires enough skill.
5. Soil Quality
What do you think about the soil medium where you are placing your plant? It should be best for the plant, right? If the soil quality is inferior, the plant cannot get enough support to stand there.
Again, the plant system cannot get enough nutrients and other important elements for plant growth if the soil has a deficiency. In the case of poorly structured soil, the plant becomes exhausted and cannot grow properly. Hence, the brown leaves appear.
Nutrient materials and moisture content of the soil are one of the main sources of the food material processing system of the plant. That’s why I try to select nutrient-enriched soil for planting a blue star juniper plant.
Then, you can use a balanced fertilizer to increase the nutrient level of the soil. Using sandy loam soil will increase the availability of air inside the soil. You should also be conscious of the soil pH. Slightly alkaline soil is preferable for this plant.
6. Salt Injury
In this phase, I will describe the salt injury which I experienced last winter. Using salt in the root zone is considered a solution to winter damage. But if you cross the limit of using salt, it will be harmful to your plant.
As soil takes ions of the salts from the soil, it cannot uptake the direct form. When you put excessive salt in the root zone, the xylem faces a problem and the conducting tissues cannot uptake the raw salt. As a result, a physiological drought is created and plants cannot survive.
If you want to save your plant from winter stress by using salt, do not use much of it. Apply a minimum level of salt to save the plant from it. If your plant is too contaminated with salt, repot your plant and then provide enough water to the plant.
Some diseases are common to the plant like-
- Fungal tip blight
- Cercospora leaf blight
If a blue star juniper plant is injured by mechanical damage or insect attack, the pathogens get their way to enter the plant body and thus the plant gets attacked with diseases.
To control the diseases, you should first cut off all the diseased parts to stop the disease from spreading. After that, you can go for two types of activities like using homemade recipes or industrial fungicides.
You can use industrial chemicals if they are available to you. In the case of using those, you should be much more careful and follow the handling processes with great consciousness. Else, you can use a homemade fungicide if you are out of chemicals. For your convenience, I am suggesting some homemade recipes here-
- Neem oil solution
Use one teaspoon of liquid soap, ¼ teaspoon of aloe vera powder, 2 teaspoons of concentrated neem oil, and a few drops of essential oil to 1 gallon of water. Mix them properly and spray them on your plant.
- Baking soda
Mix 4 teaspoons of baking soda in 1 gallon of water. After diluting properly, spray them into the plant.
Caring Guides For Blue Star Juniper Plant
|Soil type||Sandy loam soil with a slightly acidic pH|
|Watering||Water should be provided when the soil is dry|
|Sunlight||6-8 hours of full Sun|
|Temperature||The optimum temperature is 65-88°F|
|Humidity||More than 60%|
|Pruning||Remove the affected leaves when attacked with diseases|
|Fertilizer||Fertilize once a year during spring|
Finally, I want to end my detailed discussion about blue star junipers turning brown. Here I have tried to mention all those problems which I found common in observing my plants and my friends’ and neighbors’ plants.
All the activities that I suggested here were experienced me and I was satisfied with those solutions. If you think it is useful, you are welcome to apply those to your plants. But be conscious about the activities as excessive amounts of remedies may also harm the plant.
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