wiiNinja
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Joined: Sun Jul 02, 2017 11:54 am
Location: South Florida-Zone 10b

Perilla plant with curly leaves problem

I've got a couple of Perilla plants from a friend about 3 months ago, and it was healthy at the time I received it. I planted these in a self watering, 5 gallons bucket. In the last few weeks, I noticed that the leaves would just curl up as seen in the pictures below:
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I did notice some ants moving in and out of the buckets. I'm trying to resolve the ant issues via a boric acid/sugar trap. But am not sure if this is the root cause. What could be the issue of why the leaves are curly? Thanks for any info.
Last edited by wiiNinja on Mon Jul 03, 2017 1:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

pepperhead212
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Location: Woodbury NJ Zone 6B

Re: Perilla plant with curly leaves problem

Have you noticed any aphids? Often, where there are ants, there are aphids.
Dave

imafan26
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Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Perilla plant with curly leaves problem

Can't see the pictures, but sounds like sucking pests. If you see stipling or marks on the leaves like it has been scratched and the leaf looks dry, it could be mites. Mites and most sucking insects will be on the underside of the leaf and on the stems. You may need a magnifying glass to see them.

If the buckets can be moved, move them to the shade after you give the plant a thorough jetting of water paying attention to the bottom of the leaves. In the shade, hit it with horticultural oil, paying attention to thorough coverage of the undersides of the leaves and the stems. This will smother aphids, mites, thrips. However, it will not take care of any eggs. You can move the plant out after the sun goes down. You will probably have to repeat every 3 days or so.

If the plant is large but otherwise healthy, you can cut it back firstand remove most of the leaves. Bag everything and dispose of it in the trash. Then spray. I find it easier with a heavy infestation to physically remove the pests on the leaves rather than try to save the leaves and cut back the plant so there is less to treat and it is easier to monitor. The new leaves should come out healthy, you just have to make sure that they don't get reinfested. Try to change the location of the plant or if you cannot, then make sure you treat everything around it. Aphids, mites, thrips have multiple hosts so if you don't want the bugs to come back, you have to do an area treatment rather than a spot treatment. Thrips and mites are the worst in warm dusty weather, keeping everything well watered, including jetting the dust off the leaves of plants helps to knock the pests off. Usually the problems go away after a good hard rain.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

wiiNinja
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Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Jul 02, 2017 11:54 am
Location: South Florida-Zone 10b

Re: Perilla plant with curly leaves problem

Thank you for the responses. Under the leaves was the key I got from the responses. I looked and in fact found lots of specs under the leaves. I assume that these are aphids so I generously sprayed the leaves, top and bottom, with a neem oil and soap solution. I'm going to keep my eyes on the plants and spray more in a few days to see if the pests go away. I do have just a small patch of garden, so in the next few days will probably spray every single plant.

Thanks so much for the helpful responses.

imafan26
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Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Perilla plant with curly leaves problem

When the growing tips are so infested that they stunt, I usually cut the plants back and make sure you carefully bag and trash the tops. You will physically get rid of a lot of the pests that way. Then spray after to get any that remain. If you are using horticultural oils, you will have to repeat it every week. Bait for ants, but also check nearby plants for pests too otherwise they will just come back. I would move the buckets away from the wall so air circulation will be better. Here perilla can be a large plant 5-15 ft tall in summer and it is happier in the ground than in a pot. Happy plants are more resilient.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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