Bush with black

Asked June 6, 2019, 7:06 PM EDT

Hello. I just moved to a new home in November. Near my front door is a plant that looks like it might be having trouble. Can you please let me know what I can do to bring it back, trim it, or.? . I have attached photos Thank you. Leann

Washington County Oregon trees and shrubs insect issues pruning

1 Response

This common shrub, sometimes called the gold dust plant, is Aucuba japonica. It may have scale insects and accompanying sooty mold problems. Begin by clipping out the spent flowers and damaged twigs. Rake out old foliage under the shrub and dispose of everything in yard debris rather than composting onsite. Then look for scale on the leaves and stems. This UC IPM page on managing scale pests includes pictures, with links to additional photo galleries. http://ipm.ucanr.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7408.html The Washington County Master Gardener Volunteers at the Extension Service office will be able to examine branches if you want assistance, https://extension.oregonstate.edu/mg/metro/have-gardening-question Your shrub is large for the space near your porch, so consider how you will prune it or choose a smaller-growing replacement. This article from OSU Extension is a good starting point for you, “Have a date with your shrub before getting out the clippers”, https://extension.oregonstate.edu/news/have-date-your-shrub-getting-out-clippers If you find scale insects, there are control suggestions on the UC IPM page, or check with us here or the local Master Gardener Volunteers for your next steps.