Since the 2011 floods in Echuca, our 92 row of West coast gems have started dying or have become spindly and small leaved with no flowers, some leaves have gone yellow. What can we do to save them?

I have no idea what west coast gems are – this is obviously an Australian name for some kind of local plant, and being in Canada, I’m not familiar with Australian plants.

However, sometimes what happens in flood situations is that the soil becomes very compacted and the pores can get clogged with fine silt or clay.

This could be what’s happened here; if the area where your plants are was actually under water for any length of time, the roots of the plants could be rotted too.

If the plants are still alive after two years, they must be really tough, so there is hope!

The characteristic traits of any kind of stress in plants are yellowing and dropping of leaves, however, the fact that they’re not blooming is a puzzle, because quite often, they’ll go into overdrive and bloom with more than usual energy, in an effort to reproduce.

Here’s a suggestion; again, not being familiar with the plant, you’ll have to decide if this is feasible or doable, but I would go along the row and stab down with a pitchfork to allow air to get down by the roots, giving them not only air, but also allowing the roots to travel further along the tunnels that this will create.

Sorry I can’t help more, but maybe this will give them a chance of survival.

Best of luck,