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Can I save my Murrayas?

Finding My Feet

Can I save my Murrayas?

We purchased our house in December 2020. March last year (see the first picture) we pulled up the grass around the existing murraya’s and all the way up the fence line. We planted additional murraya’s (which are all doing well and healthy) and a cottage style garden in front. Fast forward 9 months and a couple of the existing murraya’s which we’re doing great, appear to by dying. 
Originally i thought maybe they weren’t getting water to the roots, so applied a wetting agent. All bar 1 Appleseed to be on the improve, however I just noticed that all of the leaves in one (that seemed to be fine) have now gone brown.

We haven’t been watering the murraya’s as we’ve been getting extra rain over summer. The other plants all seem to do be doing great and its only some of the murraya’s.


any ideas? 












Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: Can I save my murraya’s

Hello @BrookeH


Welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community. It's fantastic to have you join us, and thank you for sharing your question about your Murraya Plant.


That is truly baffling. I don't understand why this particular spot in your garden is affecting just one of your plants. The only thing that comes to mind is the soil underneath has turned hydrophobic. This phenomenon occurs when organic matter in the soil breaks down and leaves a waxy coating on soil particles. The coating repels water, so no matter how much you water the soil, the plant just can’t absorb the water.


In order to try and save the Murraya apply a wetting agent, this acts as a detergent and helps break down the waxy surface, allowing water to reach the roots. When the wetting agent has settled, you can further improve the soil condition by applying organic food such as Yates 5kg Blood And Bone Based Plant Fertiliser. This will improve soil structure and water retention, while also encouraging beneficial microbes. Cover it with a layer of Organic Lucerne Mulch. This helps retain moisture and enriches the soil as it breaks down.


My favourite step of course is to water it with Seasol 600ml Concentrate Liquid Fertiliser to give it that extra boost. 


Let me tag our experienced members @Noelle and @Adam_W for their recommendations on how to save your Murraya.


If you need further assistance, please let us know.




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Re: Can I save my murraya’s

Hi Eric,


yes after some research I did apply a wetting agent (only one application so far with a second due this weekend) and then applied some liquid fertiliser as well. I did this to all of the murraya’s down this end of the garden. 

Its actually 3 plants not doing so well. 
the second and third pictures are of the one that I’ve just noticed today, that has lost all the colour in its leaves.


The fourth picture is of one that is still not doing well after the first application of the wetting agent.


the next are plants in the same area that seem to be doing fine, and the last is a plant that wasn’t doing well, but actually (though may not look it), seems to be improving slightly. 

Kind of a Big Deal

Re: Can I save my murraya’s

Hi @BrookeH 


Wetting agent, soil tonic (eg Seasol) and an organic mulch (lucerne or sugarcane mulch) to help the soil absorb and hold moisture is key.  Once you have the soil hydrating well, then you can apply a fertiliser to assist your murrayas to get the nutrition they require.

Workshop Legend

Re: Can I save my murraya’s

Hi @BrookeH I'm going with what has already been said - the soil is repelling water. As was mention soil wetter, seaweed and importantly follow that with quality organic materials to naturally crack that water repellency for the long-term.
In situations like this I also use a general purpose fungicide as part of the problem can be unwanted soil fungal things. This is my go-to product when I'm having these sort of mystery problems & it's amazing how often it fixes things...

Growing in Experience

Re: Can I save my Murrayas?

I’ve just read several discussions about saving Murrayas by using setting agent to penetrate the soil but it wasn’t working. Murrayas hate too much water. Is it possible with the recent floods and wet season they have had too much water in the flat backyard ? 



Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: Can I save my Murrayas?

Hello @MeganCooper 


The wet weather is definitely a factor in the health of the Murrayas. Too much water or not enough water can be detrimental to the health of any plant. 




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