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Hampshire, United Kingdom Gb

I have a very large Pyracantha ( firethorn ) in the garden. It's been thriving for years and years, suddenly all of it's leaves and orange berries are drooping and looking very poorly. What on earth has happened?



Check the stems from top to bottom, and particularly near the base, for signs of rot or disease - you're looking for soggy areas, or areas of stem which have collapsed inwards, or significant damage of some kind. These shrubs can fall prey to fireblight, but that usually starts at flowering time - have you noticed any branches with a problem in the last couple of years?

12 Mar, 2011


Hi Bamboo, thanks for your response as ever. No signs of any problems in previous years. This really has happened in the last 2 weeks. Just can't understand it. It really has had a bumper crop of berries, even they are shrinking and dying off this year. I can only describe it looking as though it needs a good drink but i know it's not dry this time of the year. The plant is about 8 feet tall and 8 feet wide with deep roots. I have not looked at the base yet, will have a good look in the morning. What is fireblight?

12 Mar, 2011


Google it, fireblight I mean, Tiger, the RHS has a lot of info on it. Largely affects plants in the Rosaceae family, which pyracantha is, but the plant often looks like its been burnt, hence its name. If you decide it is fireblight, plant nothing else from the Rosaceae family in the same space, but I doubt it is that, it usually strikes, as I said, around flowering time, although its not impossible I suppose. Check the stems, particularly at the base, as I said. No one's been throwing weedkiller about, have they?

13 Mar, 2011


It grows very close to several other shrubs and trees Bamboo. I would think that if someone had thrown weedkiller around, they too would show signs. Checked the bottom of the stems and can't see any signs of trouble, it is a mystery!! Will keep an eye on it to see if it spreads or indeed perks up. Will let you know on it's progress.

14 Mar, 2011

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