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Re: Photinia

Message from Jim Wilmington DE 7a

The Raleigh Photies would make me say "Uncle!" Those are HUGE!

Nice to see healthy Photinias smack in the Southland where Photinia Blight has wiped out so many and left most people skittish about planting any new ones.

Up this way, the only problem with them is when they are planted on high ground. During droughty summers, they can drop foliage and even lose whole sections of the plant if the ground gets too dry and the water table gets beyond the reach of the roots.

Okay. I'll add one more tiny issue. For the first time ever, mine provided meals for tent caterpillars this past spring. Forever, I thought tent caterpillars only ate Choke Cherries -- a rather worthless naturalized roadside species. But this year, a mommy moth laid eggs in my Cherry Laurels. The caterpillars, for a time, were out of control and feasted on the Cherry Laurels, including my straight species favorite. I also discovered them in my Photinia -- caught them in the act of chewing. The Cherry Laurels were at least of the right genera that the caterpillars favor. But Photinia is not. Also found them on my Trachy, but there was no evidence of leaf loss on that plant. I guess monocots puzzle them.

This coming spring, I will be on the lookout early for the caterpillars.


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