I have 12 different Althea (Rose of Sharon). Mostly tree form. For the last several years one of them has produced tons of buds but no flowers and last year a second one has shown the same problem. These affected plants are over 200 feet apart with 10 unaffected plants between them. Every body gets the same sun, water and fertility dance. Whatever is on them is sucking the buds dry and not affecting the leaves, stems or branches. It looks like little white fuzzy balls on the tips of the buds only. The white stuff does not move around. Every other part of the plant looks healthy. Nothing on the leaves, nodes, crotches, etc.. The buds do not turn yellow and drop off. The just stay there until late fall. I have dissected the buds and can find no evidence of any insect. Nothing is in the bud. I have tried every version of alcohol, soap concoction known to man. That gets rid of some but not all of the white stuff and 2 days later it is back. I have tried fungus sprays. I have tried insect sprays. I have sprayed the plant. I have sprayed the ground. I have not done a snake dance yet..... I can send you photos if it would help. I have talked to all of the garden centers in my area and shown them photos. They have been of no help. I know it is NOT mealy bugs.