Did I just Kill my Philodendron?!

Alleycat1975January 29, 2014

So, My philodendron that I keep at work had become infested with fungus gnats-- gross. So I took him home yesterday to basically dump the soil, clean the roots and re pot with soil that I known isn't buggy. Problem is, we're like in arctic temps right now. I got it to the car, got it out, dumped the soil and immediately went inside. When I re-potted, i rinsed the roots with lukewarm water and the soil i re-potted with wasn't cold. However, today, the leaves are wilted and inside the veins you can see brown. (see pics). A few of the stems towards the main part of the plant have started to turn yellow as well.

He's back in his spot at work (which meant having to go outside again for about a 5 minute car drive to work).. but I'm wondering if the damage is already done.


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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

Looks more like Pothos. Only a crystal ball could help you know if it's dead or alive still, impossible to say from this pic unfortunately. When you took it out in the frigid air, was it in a bag or box, some kind of protection?

    Bookmark   January 29, 2014 at 9:26AM
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How cold was it when you did this? The leaves do look affected, but the roots may not have been destroyed. If the leaves and vines turn all dark, you can cut them back but still tend to the roots as you normally would. I'd suggest giving it a chance as it's amazing what some plant survive.

My rule of thumb is to not even transport a plant in the car if it's close to freezing, but likely you now know this.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2014 at 10:55AM
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You could try cutting the plant down, and see if it will show new growth eventually. There may be some cold damage, but the whole plant isn't necessarely dead. Time will show if there is hope.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2014 at 11:01AM
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My pothos (looks just like that) is very sensitive to repotting - I had to do this before when I too had a gnat problem. (pesky little buggers!) It looked like it needed a good ole fashioned fainting couch for about a week or two and then perked up again. It yellowed and dropped quite a few leaves during that time but it perked back up and began it's new conquest of my bedroom.

I thought the shock was more about disturbing the roots than any other factor in the transplant. It's massive now and hangs in a window, reaching for the glass that is pretty chilly this time of year, but it seems to thrive just the same. Unless you exposed it to arctic temps for more than a minute or two, it's my opinion that I doubt the cold shocked it that badly.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2014 at 12:51PM
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AlleyCat. Your Pothos leaves have frost-bite. Notice gray-black color foliage?

As long as roots didn't freeze, your Pothos is not dead. Some plants are hardier than others..I've seen tropical plant leaves freeze in 2-minutes after being exposed to freezing temps, while other plants weren't marred whatsoever.

Discolored leaves are dead..depending on the amount you might consider cutting vines back as Pelargonium suggested. Good luck,, Toni

    Bookmark   January 29, 2014 at 1:41PM
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