Volutella decimates pachysandra

Asked February 7, 2017, 11:23 AM EST

Hello. Last year, for an unknown reason, alot of my pachysandra died off. I learned the culprit was a fungus volutella. I had the infected plants sprayed. Now what do I do?? Any possibility the plants will return from rootings left behind? Do I need to "mow" these leafless stems down? Dig them up? Replant the beds? Most of the pachysandra is under oak and pine trees...but they do get some indirect sun and have thrived there for at least 17 years...How do I fix this and avoid a recurrence?? Please help!!

Baltimore County Maryland

1 Response

Volutella is not uncommon on old, unmanaged pachysandra beds.
Here is our page about it: http://www.extension.umd.edu/hgic/volutella-dieback-pachysandra-groundcover
As with any foliar plant disease, management goes far to promote better growth and less chance of a recurrence. This includes removal of diseased leaves, thinning of the bed by mowing or removing some of the plants so that there is better air circulation, and raking of debris from the bed when needed. Generally, anything that keeps the leaves more dry than wet is what you are after. The longer leaves stay wet, the more likely that diseases can get out of hand.
It's impossible to tell what you have going on right now. It sounds as if you have done what you could, and now just wait and see what kind of new growth you get in the upcoming growing season.