Elephant Ears

Asked September 27, 2019, 1:44 PM EDT

The last two years my Elephant's Ears around September the leaves turn grey and
like ash is on them. I have to cut the leave off eventually it get all over the plant.
Please help, My Elephant's Ears are traffic Stoppers. They are about 20 yrs. old.
I don;t want to loose them.!!!!! Thank you, Janie

Wayne County Michigan

1 Response

If you can wipe off the ash then it is most likely spider mites. Or put a piece of white paper under a leaf and tap on the leaf. If there are spider mites you will see them drop onto the paper. If this is the issue, then try rinsing the leaves with a good blast of water or purchase a miticide and treat per the label instructions.
The other possibility could be that you are seeing powdery mildew on the leaves. This is a fungus that favors high humidity and dry conditions and is spread by spores through water splash and air currents. For this reason, I would recommend that next year you space your plants (or pots) further apart to allow for more air circulation. Also, do not overhead water these plants.
A fungicide can be used but is most effective when combined with cultural controls. I have provided you with a link below which will give you more details about powdery mildew and how to control it. Hope that helps.