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Desert Rose problem

This is a discussion on Desert Rose problem within the The Jungle forums, part of the Land Plants category; This plant has been growing great and blooming profusely this summer . Now below is ...

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  1. #1
    ischel1's Avatar
    ischel1 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Desert Rose problem

    This plant has been growing great and blooming profusely this summer . Now below is the problem. I discovered this hole this am when I was doing some checks on my orchids. The bulb itself is firm, but the area in question is soft and mushy with a cavity of 1" or 2.5cm at the soil line and is also soft and mushy inside. It is in full sun (southern exp) inside and is watered every day, as described by the grower. I would hate to lose this plant, so please help.
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    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Ron-NY is offline rothaholic
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    Mary it appears that you may have stem rot. You can try cleaning out the rot with a melon baller, scraping down to healthy tissue and then treat with a fungicide. Then keep it dry so that it heals over. Watch it carefully to make sure it is not continuing. If needed, you can take stem cuttings and root them to make another plant. When I grew this plant I would keep a layer of gravel over the surface of the medium to about 1" deep...that prevents what you are seeing.

    Your leaves look healthy so i would assume the roots are good. Mary, this is a plant that I never watered daily. You never really want the soil more than barely moist.

  3. #3
    Brutal_Dreamer's Avatar
    Brutal_Dreamer is online now Dreaming with my eyes open...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ron-NY View Post
    Mary it appears that you may have stem rot. You can try cleaning out the rot with a melon baller, scraping down to healthy tissue and then treat with a fungicide. Then keep it dry so that it heals over. Watch it carefully to make sure it is not continuing. If needed, you can take stem cuttings and root them to make another plant. When I grew this plant I would keep a layer of gravel over the surface of the medium to about 1" deep...that prevents what you are seeing.

    Your leaves look healthy so i would assume the roots are good. Mary, this is a plant that I never watered daily. You never really want the soil more than barely moist.
    Thanks, Ron. I did not know this either. I have seen them potted in gravel before (simi-bonsai).

    Cheers,
    BD

  4. #4
    Ron-NY is offline rothaholic
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    I would keep a layer of gravel in the bottom of the pot for drainage and a layer on the top to prevent rot. There was a time I had a few hundred tropicals...most went to new homes after my orchid obsession...er...hobby started.

    I have actually seen these grown as bonsai...

  5. #5
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    Stem rot it is. Ron's words for treatment should be good. I would add however, that you might also wish to raise the trunk about an inch above the soil line after cleaning it out. This will make it easier to keep that area dry until it completely heals. For that matter, depending on the appearance of the buried portion of the trunk, when all is said and done it might look like a hollow bole in an old "tree".

    During the hot summer months, copious water can be given assuming adaquate drainage. (Interestingly enough, I have read some info in the last few years which indicates that putting gravel in the bottom really doesn't help with drainage much. Rather it raises the watertable in the pot which is not necessarily desirable.) The mix you have seems rather 'heavy' though it is difficult to tell from the picture. An airier mix might be in order. I'd also have to agree with Ron that daily watering is excessive.

    From what I've seen, these plants actually lend themselves extremely well to 'bonsai' ... or at least that sort of look. They can be heavily root and/or branch/stem pruned with little cause for worry.

  6. #6
    ischel1's Avatar
    ischel1 is offline Senior Member
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    Thank you, thank you all. I left it sitting in the sun with good air circulation today and it is scheduled for radical rot-ectomy and debrediment as necessary first thing in the am.

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