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Althea bush

Marsha Asked

I just bought a Strawberry Smoothie Althea Bush at a local nursery and I went out yesterday and the leaves had turned yellow and fell off. I only got it less than 5 days ago and it is still in the pot. Is it salvageable?

The Gardener’s Answer

Hi, Marsha: Have you contacted the nursery where you purchased your shrub? They may offer a replacement or a discount. Strawberry Smoothie Rose of Sharon, also known as Althea, is a low maintenance plant with good disease resistance and showy double flowers. The yellow foliage may be a result of uneven moisture levels. This can be difficult to control with container grown plants. Even though the foliage has turned yellow and dropped, the roots are most likely fine, and once it is planted in the ground, it will put on new growth. Choose a sunny space that allows for good drainage and enough room for the shrub to mature. The foliage will turn yellow in the fall before it loses its leaves for the winter. This is normal fall color. These are tough plants and once established will provide showy double flowers throughout the growing season. Hopefully yours is getting settled in its new home and putting on healthy new growth.

Angie Oakley

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