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Old October 10th, 2004, 11:15 AM
mjosa mjosa is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Chicago
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Tibouchina indoors

I bought my tibouchina at an "end of summer"sale at the garden center. It was flowering and looking gorgeous when I brought it home. Now it is looking sickly and pathetic. I have tried to follow the instructions of the nurseryman, but I don't know what I'm doing wrong. Here are its growing conditions:

My tree is indoors in a spacious living room; it gets full afternoon sun in a west facing window; I have been keeping the soil moist, and lightly fertilizing every week or so w/ Bloom Plus (10/54/10). The tips of the leaves are turning brown and curling up. There is new growth on top, but as soon as buds appear, they dry up and fall off.

(When it first got here it lost a lot of its leaves, but I figured it was the shock of the moves, since new growth appeared afterwards.)

Any advice you can provide to help me grow a healthy tibouchina would be greatly appreciated.
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Old November 16th, 2004, 02:58 PM
Douglas Justice's Avatar
Douglas Justice Douglas Justice is offline
UBC Botanical Garden and Centre for Plant Research
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 1,159
Indoor Tilbouchina

Dry air and decreasing daylight hours with overfertilization may be your problem. In the wild, Tibouchina grows on hillsides near streams with lots of sun and humid air. In addition, most plants are sensitive to being moved indoors from greenhouse or garden. For overwintering, they need to be kept with soil on the dry side and minimum temperature of fifty degrees F. We suggest holding fertiliser until the plant responds to greater light in the spring. Repot then, or topdress with rich compost. Prune to shape and to remove dead or spindly growth. Your warm summers will yield great foliage and blooms!
Douglas Justice
Associate Director
Curator of Collections
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