Dapne Odora dying of fungal disease

Asked March 22, 2020, 4:14 PM EDT

I think my plant (20 yr old) is dying of some type of root fungus (wilted, browning & dropping leaves, buds not opening). A huge branch was dead & was removed in the fall. From what I've read, there's little hope of a cure. I love the plant and would like another aromatic daphne in that location. If/When I finally remove the current plant: 1. how to dispose of it 2. how to treat the soil (& nearby plants) to stop further fungal infection 3. are there varieties of daphne that I can plant in the same location that are more disease resistant

Multnomah County Oregon

3 Responses

Cultural control

•Improve water drainage around plantings.

•Reduce irrigation amount and frequency.

•Maintain at a slightly acidic pH and do not over-fertilize with nitrogen.

•Remove and destroy infected plant and potting material including leaves, cuttings, plants, and potting media.

•Collect cuttings for propagation only from healthy stock plants.

•Avoid reusing pots from a previous crop for propagation. If pots must be reused then wash off all debris and soak in a sanitizing solution or treat with aerated steam for 30 min.

There are many beautiful alternative shrubs for you to consider. Try using native plants. Or look for disease resistant varieties.

Here are some publications that you may find useful:




Hope this helps!

I had already read the info you sited on various websites.

I don't feel like you really read my question carefully.

What I was hoping from you was referring to post-removal of my affected plant - specific to handling the soil (in ground) where it is currently planted and whether, after that, there are varieties of daphne that would be more resistant to fungal disease.

Daphne roots like to be cool. Mulching with well-rotted organic matter will help keep them cool in hot weather, but keep the mulch away from the stem. Their roots don’t like wet soil either. When you plant a Daphne, dig a hole twice as wide as and a little deeper than the pot it came in. Make an island-like mound in the middle of the hole where you sit the root ball. This will help with drainage. Water it only occasionally if you grow it in the sun and very little if it’s growing in the shade. The less you water it in the summer, the more blossoms you’ll get in the winter. Prolonged exposure to severe winter cold can make roots susceptible to fungal root rot.

If you are convinced you have a root disease that you are not able to control with cultural practice above, it is best to remove your shrub and destroy it and replace it with a different genus of shrubs. Try lilac, snowball bush, viburnum, mock orange, and some of the plants listed in the bulletin below.


Hope this helps!