Is this dying pachysandra

Asked May 27, 2018, 12:00 PM EDT

We have a customer who is insisting that we have cut his pachysandra. We have not touched it all.
It looks like it is actually dying.
It also looks like this in other areas of the bed.

Allegheny County Pennsylvania

1 Response

It is difficult to diagnose the problem from your photo. Pachysandra is vulnerable to a leaf and stem blight that is caused by a fungus (Volutella pachysandrae).
The fungus is most active in rainy spring weather and spreads from plant to plant in splashing water and contaminated tools. The spores survive the winter on infected stems and leaves left in the garden. If not controlled, this blight can kill an entire bed of pachysandra in one or two years.

To get an expert diagnosis, I recommend sending a sample of the dying pachysandra to the Plant Disease Clinic at Penn State. This is a free service offered to gardens and landscapes in the state of Pennsylvania. Here's the link for directions on sending a sample of the diseased plant:

It is also possible that the problem is being caused by something that was applied tothe lawn, if the pachysandra is only being affected at the edge of the bed where it borders the lawn.

After you have a diagnosis from the Plant Disease Clinic, you can contact us again
for more assistance or take the diagnosis to your local lawn and garden shop to
purchase the correct product to treat the problem.