Be On The Lookout For Mites

A number of fellow gardeners here in Florida have had a spider mite problem this year. You need to be pro-active or you will lose your blooms. Look for webs, and tiny bugs under the leaves. Yellow leaves can also be an indicator, mites suck the chlorophyll from the leaves. Signs of damage include blackening of leaf edges, leaf curl, new leaves and buds turning black, loss of inflos, and black tip can also result from the damage.
Spray with a systemic to kill the mites. The eggs will continue to hatch, but over spraying can kill your plant, so a good hose spray will knock them off. It will take a couple of weeks to get rid of them. A non-toxic approach is to spray the plants with milk and water solution, it will get rid of the mites and also acts as a fungicide. Spray late in the evening when there is no sun. You can spray off the residue in the morning.

Rust Treatment Results – Bayleton

Rust has been a problem for many plumeria growers in recent years. I had none until last summer. I suspect I got it from a cutting or plant I got in the mail. For a long time it was confined to the front yard, which is surprising since the yard is only 80 x 100. Finally it hopped the fence and the plumies in the back yard became infected as well. After reading some message boards suggestions, I tried Bayer Advanced fungus control (which is made for lawns) as well as a systemic fungicide. They both have the active ingredient Bayleton, and I got them from Ace Hardware in Largo, Florida.
First I cut all the leaves off, to prevent reinfestation, it was March so there weren’t many to cut. I sprayed the branches with the fungicide spray. Then I sprinkled it around the base of each plant. I’m a bit paranoid, so I treated again in May. When I get new plants I sprinkle them as well. It is now July, and I am happy to say I am still rust free.

Protect Your Plumerias From Freezing Temperatures

Special care must be taken to protect Plumerias if freezing weather is expected. For mild climates in southern Florida or Texas (zones 9 or higher) covering them with freeze cloth or wrapping them with Christmas lights a couple nights a year may be all that is necessary. Small potted plants can be easily moved indoors.
In cooler climates plumerias will need protection all winter, or as long as freezing temperatures are possible. Plumerias are dormant during this time and can be dug up and stored bare root in a garage or basement, as long as it is dry. They will most likely be defoliated already, but if any leaves remain remove them before moving inside to save yourself from having to pick them up later. They do not require light, food, or water during this time.
When spring approaches they will begin to wake up. Their tips will become shiny – a sign that leaf growth is about to begin. As long as there is no danger of a freeze, they can be moved back outdoors.