I spent some time trying to find the old thread and got bored so I'm making a new one. The issues are pretty different by this point anyway, so I figure it's time for a spin-off.
Background: I have a parthenocissus plant I love; it's a crazy fast climber you can practically watch grow. Last year I made a bee friend I initially thought was killing my plant by taking chunks out of the leaves, but then I learned that it was a native honeybee that burrows and lays eggs rather than living communally, a fantastic pollinator and fairly docile. It turned out my plant was fine, and if I let her do her thing she would let me do mine. Then another one came along that was kind of a jerk, but eventually it left and she stuck around until it got too hot for bees. The plant made a full recovery and all was well the end.
The parthenocissus managed to survive the winter, and I've been over the moon about that. I've been anxiously awaiting the return of Bee Arthur's progeny, and I've started looking for signs of the crescent-shaped cutouts that would indicate they've returned and found my plant. I thought I maybe saw one, and was like YESSSS... except it was never just one. She'd come by, spend hours wreaking havoc on the leaves, and then return the next day. Also the leaves look kind of funny... not like last year, but then the plant is a year old now and maybe the leaves just start to look like that. I dunno, I just started thinking about this stuff last year.
After some poking around online, I think
what happened is when my husband and son brought me home this beautiful miniature rose plant, it may have had some downy mildew. I cut off everywhere I found it and it seemed okay.. it hasn't had another bud, but I dunno.. anyway, now my parthenocissis looks like it does and I'd really like to save it, both for the plant and my bee friends.
I looked up fungicides that won't hurt bees, and nothing seems to be 100% certain on that second part. I looked up treatments for downy mildew specifically and so far all I've come up with is "PULL IT UP DESTROY IT WITH FIRE ALONG WITH EVERYTHING AROUND IT AND BURN DOWN YOUR HOUSE AND SURROUNDING PROPERTIES JUST TO BE SURE, IT'S THE ONLY WAY."
I'm not even sure that's what's going on, and I definitely don't want to kill my plant.
But I also don't know how bad something like that could be for bees who tried to eat it, and that's really more important to me than a plant I can replace.
Should I murder my plant in cold blood to save any future Bee Arthurs? Or is it safe to let it go and see what happens?