HELP!! Bird of Paradise in trouble.
We have had this plant for about a year and very early on saw these white spots on the underside of leaves and on the stem. They were easy to wipe off and I wiped them off with rubbing alcohol. But now they are back with a venegence. I am attaching pics. I can easily rub them off but under the white spot is an area of the leaf that has lost the chlorophyl and looks dead. Is this some kind of fungus or scale?
We really like this plant but we notice that even though it is putting out new leaves, it doesnt look healthy.
Bird of Paradise Help
Take this with a grain of salt, O.K.?
But, this appears to be either some sort of Rust, or scales. Look close at the white powder (I assume) that comes off on your fingers, is there an insect body in that fluff or just dust? I'm leaning more towards some sort of Rust, but can't tell from the photos.
First, I'd try some Dawn dishwashing liquid. The original scent, no bleach. Mix a couple drops of this in a spray bottle and spray the plant and specifically the spots. If these are scales or maybe whiteflies (Again can't tell precisely from the photo) this might help at least deter them, if not completely rid the plant of them. Doesn't help if the plants get rained on every day like they would out here in Hawaii because it's rinsed off, but if they stay relatively dry(-ish) in between sprays with this solution, a residue will stay on the plants from the soap and help to deter the insects (without hurting the plant in any way).
^^^Doing this won't harm the plant at all, so it's worth a try at least!^^^
If that doesn't help, you might assume that this is some form of Rust (different 'types' of Rust appear on different plants, not personally certain if there is one which specifically attacks Bird of Paradise or relatives, though there probably is...) then you will most likely need to spray with some fungicide. Not personally sure either if this can harm the plant in any way, I know different companies use different chemicals and mixes, so I'm going to hold my tongue there.
You might drop a note over in the Hawaii forum of Gardenweb. There isn't TONS of activity over there, but the ladies n gents in that forum know what they're talking about, so you're almost sure to get a positive answer there.
Hope ya figure out your problem one way or another!
All the best and aloha!