Climbing Hydrangea Is Not Leafing Out And Bark At Base Is Squishy And Peels Back Easily

Question From: J. McMahon - Wichita, Kansas, United States
Q: My climbing hydrangea has been very healthy, I have one on either side of the trellis that surrounds my garage and it's beautiful! One side is already starting to leaf out but one is not and I noticed that down at the base of the plant the bark is squishy and peels back easily and it's slimy underneath. Do you have any suggestions what might be causing this? Its almost like it's rotting down there. This particular side does not get as much light as the other side but gets the same amount of water.

A: Sounds like root rot. You might try treating it with a fungicide to see if it can be saved. Best Nancy