The iconic frangipani is the queen of the tropics. Reliably flowering every year these trees require little maintenance and are easy to strike from cuttings. While the trees can grow up to 6m high they also work relatively well in pots on verandahs.
A beautiful tree with large green leaves and fragrant flowers the frangipani comes in all colours of the rainbow with the most popular being the white flower. Frangipanis can flower from December to April, and thrive in well-drained soil, plenty of sun and frost-free conditions. They love growing by the beach in sandy soils and are one of the best trees for tolerating salty air along the coast.
While they are incredibly easy to maintain they are susceptible to an airborne disease called Frangipani rust. If your tree has small yellow spots on the underside of the leaves and discoloration of the upper-side then you unfortunately have a rust infected plant. These little yellow and orange pustules found on the underside of the leaves rupture, sending spores into the air and passing on the rust to other nearby plants.
Treating Frangipani Rust
Unfortunately for us Aussies the most effective chemical fungicide for this disease is illegal in Australia. But you can still treat the affected plants with copper oxychloride and sulphur with mancozeb, applying to the leaves and ground under the tree. You can also use trifend.
As this is an airborne disease it is also important to continuously clear away any fallen leaf matter in the rubbish bin – don’t compost these leaves! The rust can survive on alive and dead matter so make sure you dispose of all leaves appropriately. Also avoiding overhead watering will decrease the acceleration of this problem.
If you’re concerned about your trees don’t hesitate to contact us! We’re more than happy to discuss your plants with you.