Juniperus Conferta needles turn brown (also found mealybugs)

About 3 months ago, I've bought two Juniperus Conferta Blue Pacific plant for the balcony.
About a month ago BOTH began to have some of the needles turn brown, mostly on one side (see the difference in pictures).
I asked someone at the store where I have bought them and they said it is either some fungi (at their recommendation we already sprayed twice with Dithane, but we did not see big changes), or that they did not get enough light on those sides (which is not likely, as they are displayed on an open balcony).
We have another theory: because we put the plants, together with their original pots into larger decorative pots, is it possible that the water did not drain well after we wet them, thus affecting the roots?
Two things to mention here:
1. After the watering, we empty the excess water that is collected in the big pots.
2. When we bought these plants, we also bought two Pigea Glauca Conica spruces, which have the same regime of care and are perfectly healthy.

What do you think would be the cause of this problem? If the roots were affected by the water, can they still be saved?
We took the plants out of the decorative pots and they seem to get better and grow new, green and healthy branches.

However, recently we have noticed some MEALYBUGS on the plants and the plant yellowing on the inside, under the top green and healthy branches, towards the center of the plant. We have read online that this could be a side effect of the mealybugs sucking up the plants` juice.

We found some treatments online with rubbing alcohol or insecticidal soap, but the problem is we did not find these products here in Romania. We tried with 70% ethanol alcohol on a single branch and we are waiting to se reactions from the plant. We have also killed the mealybugs using a toothpick and an earbud soaked in the above-mentioned alcohol.
They seem to be in a small number, but we want to prevent them from spreading, as fast as possible.
Any ideas on how to get rid of them, naturally? We also have a cat and we want to avoid toxic stuff that could harm her.

Thank you so much.

Thumbnail by blueConferta Thumbnail by blueConferta Thumbnail by blueConferta

Post a Reply to this Thread

Please or sign up to post.