University of Maryland Extension

Volutella Dieback of Pachysandra - Groundcover

volutella dieback of pachysandra
Symptoms of volutella

***It is no longer recommended to plant Pachysandra terminalis (Japanese spurge), especially near or adjacent to natural areas, because it is an alien invasive plant***

Link invasive plant atlas:

The disease symptoms of this fungal disease on pachysandra include brown or black spots on leaves that may enlarge and blight the entire leaf or stem. Infected plants may turn black and become soft. In wet weather pink spores will be visible on infected surfaces. Under drier conditions the brown spots may have a target appearance or have concentric rings.


Avoid overhead irrigation and thin plantings to increase air circulation that will promote faster leaf drying. Thinning can be accomplished by selective pruning of infected leaves or by mechanical removal such as with a lawn mower set at the highest setting. Removal of fallen debris and clean up of old leaves etc. will also help reduce the amount of moisture trapped and will promote faster drying of the planting bed. 

 volutella leaf spots on pachysandra
Closeup of volutella leaf spots

volutella infected stems
Blighted stems and leaves from volutella

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