I’m sure I’ve told this story a dozen times here but when I lived in Louisiana, I had a bay leaf tree in a fairly large bucket. It rarely got cold enough to bring it in but I always brought it in when it would get cold and kept that tree for about 10 years. We moved it to Kentucky with us and for the first couple of years, I’d remember to bringing it in during the winter. One year, it was a sunny, warm day and I put it out and forgot about it and it froze . . dead! I was so sad and had looked for a new bay leaf tree ever since I lost that one.
A couple of years ago, we stopped in at a nursery in Abilene and they had them so we bought two.
This is about the size both trees were when we got them. They had really grown like crazy but early this past winter, this one looked dead. The leaves just dried up and died. I left it in the greenhouse, stuck it in a corner and didn’t even bother to water it. A month or so ago, I dumped the bucket it was in, sprayed it with Clorox water to clean it all up, and was going to use the bucket for something else. I happened to look at the dead bay leaf tree and it had green sprouts near the bottom. I didn’t think it had been grafted but wanted to be sure the green I saw wasn’t coming from a grafting wood. I repotted the tree back in the same pot (because I didn’t have a bigger one handy), cut it back just above the green growth and look at it . . it is doing good.
You can see how big the other three has grown but . . it had a bad case of mealybugs. I had been fighting them in the greenhouse, had that tree away from the other plants and had been taking the bay leaf tree off and trying to squirt all the bugs off with water. I thought I had gotten rid of them but last week when we had to put all the plants back in the greenhouse, I noticed mealybugs all over that bay leaf tree.
Yesterday I went out, put on a high pressure nozzle and sprayed the bugs and the underneath side of the leaves where the eggs were. Then I mixed up my trusty concoction of Neem Oil, Dawn and water.
I repotted both the bay leaf trees and am going to have to spray that big tree and get rid of the mealybugs once and for all! There’s always something to do around here. I’d so much rather be outside doing things than be inside . . even if it’s having a battle with mealybugs!