Plant Defoliation: Dealing With Defoliated Plants In Your Garden – 2024 Guide

As a gardener, one thing that we always dream of in our garden is having a lush green flower bed or garden and in some cases, nature doesn’t seem to comply with our dreams and requests.

It first starts with leaves dropping off one or two plants and before you realize it, all you are left with is just bare plants with no leaves and just stems in your garden. There are lots of reasons behind plant defoliation and we encourage you to read on so you can learn more about this unfortunate occurrence.

What causes plant defoliation should be the question on your mind right now.

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Causes And Effects Of Plant Defoliation

plant defoliation

Widespread stripping of leaves or widespread loss of leaves is what we refer to as plant defoliation and some of the factors responsible for this could be chemicals or diseases from herbicides, insect infestation and also grazing animals like rabbit and deer.

You should check thoroughly when you notice that your plant is suddenly losing its leaves and you should also look out for insect or animal chewing signs as well as signs of diseases such as molds, mildew, blisters and spots. You should also think if a chemical treatment has been done near the plant lately.

Calling a certified arborist should be your next line of action when you notice that your plants are losing leaves so a proper diagnosis can be done. Photosynthesis is carried out in the leaves cells of plants and what this simply means is that plants suffering from defoliation would not be able to convert sunlight into energy.

The death of plants, malformed and stunted plants are all possible results of defoliation in plants but woody plants are likely to survive defoliation simply because reserved energy is stored in their branches and trunks.

Constant defoliation can also lead to the death of woody plants as well.

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How To Treat Defoliated Plants In Your Garden

Carrying out a thorough investigation of what caused plant defoliation in your garden is quite helpful as it leaves you with possible ways you can get to deal with the situation.

If it is the cause of animal damage then there are lots of animal deterrent products which you can try out in order to keep your plants healthy and safe. A homemade rabbit deterrent can be made through the boiling of marigold, garlic, onion, crushed red pepper, cinnamon and cloves in water.

This mixture should be strained and sprayed around the areas where this rabbit visits frequently.

Just like other rabbit repellent bought in stores, this homemade rabbit repellent is very effective but would need to be reapplied constantly and if it is a case whereby the grazing animal has completely killed off the plant or finds it impossible to leave the plant alone then replacing the plant with either a deer-resistant or rabbit resistant plant is what you must do to keep it away.

When insects feed off your plants then you should consider some powerful insecticide to kill off the insects attacking the leaves of your plants. This insecticide should be properly sprayed and there are some that are systemic meaning they would require you to just spray the base of the plants as the plants would suck them right up, therefore, ensuring that they are protected both on the inside and on the outside.

A cause of defoliation that is difficult to diagnose is a disease but usually, you would get to see black or brown spots on your leaves.

You should try out copper fungicides in dealing with these diseases and there are some ornamental shrubs that have fungicide and insecticide in one product.

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