White spots on coneflower and neighboring honeysuckle vine
Dear Expert, I have posted two pictures below. My coneflowers have been drying and going to seed, but I noticed white spots on the petals. I cut off the blooms but now notice white spots on the Major Wheeler honeysuckle vines that have been hanging over or drooping into the coneflower. Should I cut off the spotted branches of the Major Wheeler or just the spotted leaves? Should I pull out the coneflower? I really do not want to lose the honeysuckle vine. The coneflower had the spots first. Thank you!!!
Cecil County Maryland
The good news is that neither plant is in jeopardy and there is nothing you need to do right now.
This late in the season, many plants are looking a bit rough and tired and spotting and diseases are are not of great concern. Without a microscope it is impossible to say with any certainty what disease is on your cone flower, but it doesn't have any leaf/flower problems that are considered serious enough to pull the plant other than a widespread blight or aster yellows, which this definitely isn't. You could have left the flowers standing- mine are being visited by goldfinches who love their seeds.
Likewise, we do not think you are in any danger of losing your Major Wheeler honeysuckle vine. That looks like powdery mildew, which is common here when weather conditions are just right- warm days and cool, humid nights.
Here is our page on powdery mildew:
The link above tells you more including ways to lessen disease problems in your garden. First and foremost is trying to increase sunlight and air circulation amongst plants. Both the honeysuckle and coneflowers are natives which will grow vigorously, but are tough plants.
Thank You VERY Much!!!