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White spots on ghost pepper and habanero leaves - plants dying

 
Posts: 5
Location: Bloomington, IN
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Yesterday morning my husband noticed that both the habanero and ghost pepper plants have developed white splotches on the leaves, and many of the leaves of the habanero had already started to wilt and fall off. The habanero is in even worse shape this morning. They looked perfectly healthy a few days ago.

Some details in case they help:

  • I repotted these back in May, using PRO-MIX, in a window-style planter.

  • A Carolina reaper, which sits right next to these plants in a separate planter, shows no signs of this.

  • We got a lot of rain this week (2 inches). When we're short on rain, I generally use tap water.

  • Last weekend I gave the plants some Neptune's Harvest fish fertilizer for the first time ever.

  • I'm in southern Indiana, zone 6.


Any ideas? Both plants are covered in peppers, and we don't want to lose them!

A leaf from the ghost pepper:


The habanero this morning:
 
Posts: 63
Location: 5b Ontario
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I am certainly no expert (rather the opposite) but to me this looks like chlorosis of the plants. Chlorosis is usually caused by nutrient deficiencies - the actual specific deficiency can vary.

Can be caused by under or over watering, waterlogged soils, or excessive fertilizers. You mentioned the large volume of rain, does the plant have a drainage hole in the pot to let excess water escape? And could it have lost soil out of the pot due to heavy downpours?

Also, I have no idea what your specific fertilizer is, but could it have been applied a bit too liberally? Overfertilizing can cause the roots to shrivel back or prevent them from taking up water, which then stresses the plant and triggers for it to dieback.

Hopefully someone else here can be a better assist in your pepper help. :) As I said, I am no expert so not sure if that is chlorosis.I wish you fhe best of luck though to save your peppers.
 
Denise Griggs
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Location: Bloomington, IN
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Sionainn Cailís wrote:I am certainly no expert (rather the opposite) but to me this looks like chlorosis of the plants. Chlorosis is usually caused by nutrient deficiencies - the actual specific deficiency can vary.

Can be caused by under or over watering, waterlogged soils, or excessive fertilizers. You mentioned the large volume of rain, does the plant have a drainage hole in the pot to let excess water escape? And could it have lost soil out of the pot due to heavy downpours?

Also, I have no idea what your specific fertilizer is, but could it have been applied a bit too liberally? Overfertilizing can cause the roots to shrivel back or prevent them from taking up water, which then stresses the plant and triggers for it to dieback.

Hopefully someone else here can be a better assist in your pepper help. :) As I said, I am no expert so not sure if that is chlorosis.I wish you fhe best of luck though to save your peppers.


Thanks for your thoughts, Sionainn.

The planter does have drainage, and it's screened so no soil is lost when I water them.

Neptune's Harvest is just a fish emulsion, which I gave to all my growing veggies last weekend at 2T per gallon of water. It's just 2-4-1, so nothing heavy duty. The peppers are the only things not doing well this week. I think the habanero is done for, unfortunately. The ghost pepper looks a bit sad but hasn't reacted as strongly as the hab. Fortunately the Carolina reaper (the most important plant, from my husband's perspective) is as happy as ever (it's in the blue planter in the pic below).

 
pollinator
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It might also be sunscald.  We've had some really hot sunny days, leafs can get sunburned.  Especially if the leaf had been shaded by something,  like another plant, and then is exposed to full sun.  Also water droplets can act as little magnifying lenses and cause burnspots in strong sunlight.
 
Denise Griggs
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Location: Bloomington, IN
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Mk Neal wrote:It might also be sunscald.  We've had some really hot sunny days, leafs can get sunburned.  Especially if the leaf had been shaded by something,  like another plant, and then is exposed to full sun.  Also water droplets can act as little magnifying lenses and cause burnspots in strong sunlight.



We did have some extremely hot days at the beginning of last week. I guess I've assumed that it can't really get too hot for chiles, but apparently I was wrong! If it gets that bad again, I'll be sure to move them where they'll get a bit of shade.
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