Care of Acacia Dealbata grown from seed

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    krazykriskrazykris
    Greenhorn
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    I have two Acacia Dealbata in pots grown from seed sown about 18 months ago. One is about 12 inches high, the other almost 24 inches. They were kept indoors on a window sill until a couple of months ago when I moved them to an enclosed lean-to on the side of my house. This is a  cooler environment but is protection from frost. They have both been looked after in the same way but the foliage of the shorter one is turning a yellowish green while the taller  one remains the darker green it has always been. Should I be feeding them now or could there be any other reason why the smaller one is not doing so well? Would be grateful for any help you can give.

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    Nate from N&GNate from N&G
    Expert gardener (moderator)
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    Hi krazykris! Great job sprouting them! Yellowing leaves at this stage can mean three things:

    • too much watering: since the lean-in is cooler, plants slow down and need less water than they did indoors. Let soil dry up a bit more before watering again, and double-check drainage (excess water should trickle out the bottom of the pot when watering). And also don’t let the pot wallow in a saucer full of water.
    • not enough nutrients: this is possible, since a potted plant usually depletes its soil nutrients in about a year. Feeding would be a good idea.
    • transplant shock: transferring them changed temperature and light, and sometimes plants react badly to that. The smaller plant might have been more fragile in that respect, but I don’t think this is the case here.

    Which of these do you think applies most?

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    krazykriskrazykris
    Greenhorn
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    Thank you very much for your detailed response.

    I think they do need feeding. Would nitrogen be good? I’m afraid I am not dedicated enough to make weedy tea.

    I also found they were pot bound! I  hadn’t realised how much they had grown but I have now now potted them on and the unhealthy looking one is now looking a bit better.

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    Nate from N&GNate from N&G
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    Oh nice thing you repotted it! Great thing you saw they were pot-bound. Acacia dealbata grows really fast when conditions are good, and its root system is pretty powerful – it can even sprout back from a stump when broken or cut, that’s how much the roots like growing.

    Yes, nitrogen will be great, especially at this stage. Later on, in Fall (if you’re in the Northern hemisphere?), you can give it a more balanced one to perhaps already trigger blooming. Don’t worry, the weedy tea option I prefer because it’s free, but other fertilizers are perfectly ok of course 🙂

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    krazykriskrazykris
    Greenhorn
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    Thank you Nate. So I am likely to have flowers next Spring? I am in UK.

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    Nate from N&GNate from N&G
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    Hi again, just saw your answer (sometimes posts appear late – it happens when people answer the email instead of logging in to respond. Maybe this was the case here?).

    I’d be surprised if you already got flowers next Spring. Usually an acacia won’t bloom until it’s four years old. I think you’ll have blooms the year after, though!

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