Plant Problems

If you are a seasoned gardener you may already be familiar with some of the common diseases that affect garden plants but for beginners it can be a little daunting to see your shrubs or trees looking less than their best. We have put together this short guide to help you identify and treat some of the more common plant diseases.

Laurel - Shot Hole

What Is Shot-Hole?

Laurel Leaf Shot-hole disease can affect all varieties of Prunus. Shot-hole is not a parasite, pest or fungal infection but rather the symptom of the bacterium seudomonas syringae which exists on all Laurel plants (just as both good and bad bacteria are present in all living things at any given time).

Laurel Shot-Hole Symptoms

  • Brown leaf spots between 2 and 10mm in diameter 
  • Looks like it has been shot with a shot-gun (hence the name shot-hole)

How to Control Laurel Shot-Hole

  • Chemical control is not necessary. Laurel plants will grow through the disease when the weather or growing conditions change.
  • Wet leaves seem to make the disease worse, so make sure not to water your plants from overhead.


Lavender Advice

  • Lavender can often be mistaken for being dead when in fact it is dormant.
  • Lavender dormant months are Oct-Apr and the Lavender will look brown and twig like.
  • When the weather warms up Lavender will show signs of new growth.

How to check if Lavender is dormant:

Step 1: Inspect the stems of the lavender plant to see if any part of it is green. If there is any visible green on the stems this will mean the lavender plant is alive. If there is no visible green, don’t worry, it does not necessarily mean the plant has died.

Step 2: Follow one of the stems that appears to be dead to the base of the plant with your hand and scratch the stem with your fingernail. Make sure to scratch the stem deep enough to see its colour.

Step 3: Observe the area of the stem that you have scratched. A lavender plant that is still alive will reveal a green or white colour. A dead lavender plant will have a hollow or brown stem

Escallonia Spot Leaf

Escallonia Spot Leaf Symptoms 

• Purple to black leaf spots, circular or more irregular in shape
• Affected leaves turn yellow (starting around the spots) and fall from the plant

Control (Non-Chemical)

• Dispose of affected leaves and any that have already fallen as a result of the disease. Note that, as an evergreen plant, escallonia will shed old leaves naturally throughout the year, but the leaf spot can affect leaves of any age.
• Affected plants could be cut back hard to stimulate new growth. Fungicide application may be necessary to prevent re-infection (see below). Be aware, however, that plants that have suffered repeated defoliation may be too weak to respond to hard pruning.

For chemical control please see our Escallonia Spot Leaf guide below

Yew Turning Yellow

Yew Turning Yellow

When Yew foliage starts to turn yellow or a bronze/red colour it usually points to some form of environmental stress. Yew plants brown for no apparent reason
and generally spontaneously recover.


  • Dogs and cats
  • Salt
  • Nitrogen
  • Drainage
  • Transplant Shock
  • Hot Weather

If you are experiencing problems with plants that are not listed above, please contact us on

or email us on theteam@impactplants.co.uk