Oh, dear. Things are Not Looking Good. When I last reported in June, there were a few leaves that were showing brown patches. In fact they looked like this:
Now, the whole bush has a rather sickly appearance:
And the majority of the leaves look like this:
Now, it sounds ridiculous, but I have in the past been caught out by normal activity. "Oh, no, it's dying!" being replaced with, "I forgot, leaves turn brown in autumn." Now, though, I don't know what you think, but it just doesn't look healthy to me, and leaves have been getting steadily worse over the last month, which would make it a very early autumn.
Today, for the first time, I noticed this at the base of the trunk:
Not a good sign, you think? I've tried identifying it via Google and have come to the conclusion that it might be a root rot, but if anyone out there has any idea, do leave a comment.
Back in June, Lucy wondered if there was something living inside the leaves where the brown patches are. I've kept my eye on them and haven't spotted anything. In July last year, when some of the shoots wilted, NotesofNature suggested it might be a sign of a fungus blocking vascular elements. Is this white stuff a progression of that?
If it is root rot, then research tells me that it's a sign of a poor root system and, given that the tree was half-uprooted in the gale in October 2013, it would seem that a jigsaw is being assembled. Still, ever the optimist, my fingers are firmly crossed that it's something innocuous. Do let me know if you have any suggestions.
This is part of Tree Following with Lucy Corrander and Loose and Leafy. Why not visit and see what's happening to trees elsewhere?