Why has my pachysandra died

Asked April 29, 2018, 4:33 PM EDT

In the past 5 years my 40+ year old large patch of pachysandra has been dying. Other areas in my front yard are also affected. Now it appears the same is starting to happen in another 40 yr old section in the back yard. Some areas are now turning yellow, then brownish. The front area is gone, can I replace it with success? Help!! I live in Chevy Chase, MD

Montgomery County Maryland

3 Responses

This is a common problem in old pachysandra beds. It's probably a fungal disease known as volutella. Click here for diagnosis and controls: https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/volutella-dieback-pachysandra-groundcover

Once the organic debris builds up between the stems, which encourages fungal growth, you can mow it down or rip it out and it should come back. You may have some dead areas where it completely died already, however. This is a good opportunity to explore planting with something native such as native ferns which make a great contrast.


Thank you. Vinca seems to be replacing the bare spots.