I'm killing my poor topiary :(

Discussion in 'Trees, Shrubs and Roses' started by Mswanson502, Apr 21, 2019.

  1. Mswanson502

    Mswanson502 New Seed

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    I bought my first plant, a topiary, about a week ago. Stupidly, I threw the tag away that says what kind it is. I have it sitting by my front door. It gets partial sun & shade. I've been watering it daily. However, again stupidly, I forgot to drill the hole in the bottom of the container until yesterday. So, it went a week without the drain hole. The leaves started drying up within a few days of getting it. I messed up.
    How can I bring it back to life? The top 2 tiers are dry. The bottom tier, that's facing the sun, is still green. The pic with the mannequin with the long sleeve shirt (pic 4) in it was 3 days after I got it. You can see how the leaves are starting to hang. The pic with the short sleeve shirt (pic 5) was the very day I got it. It was so pretty.
    The next day it started dying. I really don't want to give up on this beauty. I don't know...

    1) How often do I water it?
    2) What kind of plant is it?
    3) Am I supposed to rotate it?
    4) Any other tips?
    FYI...I live in Royse City, TX. It's near Dallas. It's hot here, rains often and is windy.

    PLEASE HELP THIS NEWBIE

    Excuse the pics with clothes. I have an online store, & those are the only pics I have of it before it started dying. Click on them to zoom in.

    Pic 1
    dYhxXEdY-1725588612.jpg

    Pic 2
    MGm8Q5OZ-1725582758.jpg

    Pic 3
    YcsMns1y-1725577437.jpg

    Pic 4
    Screenshot_20190421-125735_Gallery.jpg

    Pic 5
    Screenshot_20190421-130018_Poshmark.jpg
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2019
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  3. toni

    toni Mistress of Garden Junque Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    For a positive ID go back to the store you bought it from and find another one like it with the name tag, use your cell phone to take a photo of the tag, both sides since care instructions are sometimes on the back side of the tag.. The tag should have watering instructions but a good rule of thumb is to stick you finger into the soil, water only when the soil is dry down to at least the second knuckle of your finger.

    So many different plants are used for topiary that knowing what you have is really important so you know if it wants shade or sun, kept moist or left to dry a bit between waterings.
    Stop watering until you ID it. Take the plant out the pots and let it dry out, too much water kills just as many, if not more, plants than under watering. If the soil is soggy take the plant out, replace the soil, repot the plant and see what happens.
     
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  4. marlingardener

    marlingardener Strong Ash

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    Meanwhile, get it away from the brick wall. We are in Texas also, and have found that brick holds and even magnifies heat. Follow Toni's advice, and I would add, please remove the dead leaves so you will know just how much of the plant needs resuscitating.
     
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  5. Mswanson502

    Mswanson502 New Seed

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    I got it at Walmart and sadly they sold out. I asked them what it was and they had no idea of course.

    How do I know which ones are truly dead? They all look dead except the bottom front. I'm really really new at this lol.

    Or is it just the brown ones that should be pulled?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2019
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  6. Mswanson502

    Mswanson502 New Seed

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    I can't believe I forgot about this. I took a pic of the tag when I got it. I did not take a pic of the back though. It's a Eugenia Topiary. Screenshot_20190421-154143_Gallery.jpg
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2019
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  7. Gail-Steman

    Gail-Steman Young Pine

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    :hi: @Mswanson502 welcome to GS and lovely to have you with us and just a shame you don't know the name as there's many varities in them but I would suggest getting it out the pot and add holes for drainage as the water will hold in the bottom ;)..I've never had one of these plants personally but I hope this link can help you in the meantime.:)

    https://www.gardenguides.com/82449-care-topiary-trees.html
     
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  8. Gail-Steman

    Gail-Steman Young Pine

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    :rofl:
     
  9. Gail-Steman

    Gail-Steman Young Pine

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  10. Mswanson502

    Mswanson502 New Seed

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    Great! I'll do what Toni said and take it out of the pot to let it dry. I'm sure I killed it when I forgot to put the drain holes in. Then I'll repot it with new soil and follow the article. Thank you! I'll update. Also I pulled it away from the brick.
     
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  11. marlingardener

    marlingardener Strong Ash

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    Mswanson, the truly dead leaves will be crisp. Some may be on the way to crispness, but if they just feel leathery, leave them on and they may revive.
    New gardeners should never buy plants at Walmart, Home Depot, or Lowe's. The workers there don't know plants, and the home office contracts with suppliers who provide plants that are often not appropriate for the customer's area. Also, shoppers pick up a tag from a pot, read it, and stick it back wherever, sometimes in a different pot. Find a nice locally owned nursery and shop there. They need your repeat business and want you to have gardening success. They can tell you about care and feeding of what you purchase, and you can go back and ask about any concerns you have.
     
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  12. Gail-Steman

    Gail-Steman Young Pine

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    Repot it as Toni said with holes ;) and drying it out will help it a great deal and don't think you've killed it because you will be surprised and just see how it comes back and by looking at your first picture it's not been long since it's been trimmed.
    Video on trimming

     
  13. Mswanson502

    Mswanson502 New Seed

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    I agree. I saw that it was just $36 & jumped on it. They're typically very expensive. I didn't want to spend a lot of money when I'm so new. I'm really going to try though. If I can't do it, I'll give her to my neighbor. She's very good at this. She's just out of town right now.

    Am I supposed to talk to it or play music, lol? Seriously...she does.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2019
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  14. Gail-Steman

    Gail-Steman Young Pine

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    Well it's everyone to their own [​IMG]...don't give up that easily try and fix it yourself first because it should be ok and it will give you a boost.
     
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  15. mart

    mart Hardy Maple

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    You can if you wish but it is really not going to help your plant ! The major problem people have when buying plants from Wal Mart, Lowes or other stores is the potting soil they used ! As a rule potting soil will not retain water unless it is soaked ! So even if you water daily your plants can still die from lack of water ! May be what happened to your plant,, not from anything you did but what the people at WalMart did !! I have never known one to get that bad that quickly !
    With most potting soils water just runs straight through and does not stay long enough for the roots to take it up !If you decide to re-pot it,, use compost that is probably less costly than potting soil and does a better job of retaining water ! Just make sure it is moist when you open the bag,, if not put it in a container and let it soak up water overnight,, then re-pot your plant ! You can also tear up some plain old kitchen sponges and add them to the mix ! They will absorb water and let the roots draw water from them ! Check the soil before watering,, stick your finger in the soil and if it is damp,, no need to water !
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2019
  16. carolyn

    carolyn Strong Ash

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    which direction is this plant facing? I personally think it got cooked from the brick getting hot. it is a tropical plant. tropical and Texas does not go hand in hand to me. it needs humidity and filtered sun in front of the brick. just to keep the brick from getting too hot. lots of humidity. the care tag says partial to full sun but not in front of the brick. if you put your hand on that brick and its hot to the touch the plant may not be able to take up enough moisture to keep up with the transpiration of the plant. you are cooking it to death. move it to a less stressful environment to give it time to regrow if its not too late.
     
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