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I have a Juniper which has grown to around 6 feet in a container which I have repotted twice since I bought it several years ago. A lot of the foliage is now turning brown and I suspect there must be a be a deficiency in the soil. I am seeking advice on the right kind of furtilizer which hopefully will help to reduce the dying foliage.

Thank you for any suggestions



Sounds to me as if it,s potbound, ideally it needs to be in the ground, but if this is not possible a very large container, what size pot is it in at the moment?, if it,s been in for some time the nutrients will have disappeared, and if it,s also potbound it wont be able to take up enough water either, so large container, or better still in the ground asap, Derek

19 Aug, 2012


The problem is and I can't tell is it a deficiency or a disease?

As with most shrubs they do not need high levels of fertilizer but in this case I would suggest the initial approach would be to give it a fast acting nitrogen rich liquid fertiliser to see what happens!

You could use Sulphate of Ammonia in water, mixed as per instruction on packaging or any other high nitrogen fertiliser.

In the event that you do not know a high nitrogen fertilser from any other fertilser it will be indicated on the NPK ratios on the packaging.

If the first number is the highest of the three then it is a high nitrogen fertilser.

This link may explain it better;

Then there is the possibility that the tree is 'pot bound' and is suffering in this way as there are insufficient nutrients in the compost available.

You could remove the top couple of inches of existing compost and replace it with a compost to the equivalent of JI 2

Another thought is the pot could be waterlogged particularly if the base is on a hard surface.

If this is the case raise the pot up on to bricks to allow the pot to drain freely.

This link might help;

If the tree has succumbed to rust or some such disease then I am afraid there might be nothing you can do!

Try what I have suggested and read the articles then fingers crossed you might have some success!

Best of luck

ps what you don't want to be doing is developing lots of new lush growth at this time of the year as the winter might cut it down and more, hence my reason for suggesting a fast acting fertiliser!

19 Aug, 2012


Thank you Derek and Teegee.
I somehow don't think it is a disease but rather a deficiency.
Unfortunately, I have no garden so it it has to be patio containers only. I have several other conifers which are still very green it is only the Juniper that has declined somewhat. I regularly feed these along with other shrubs/plants, using a multi-purpose feeder, but I realise this isn't adequate. Someone suggested *Miracid* for conifers, but I thought to ask further advice. I will follow your suggestions and repot again and perhaps go for the sulphate of ammonia.
I am grateful to you both for your advice and the links which you included in your responses

22 Aug, 2012

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