selaginella moss and polka dot plant dying?

environnessMarch 20, 2014

Hi I'm completely new to plants and I need help! I have a polka dot plant and selaginella moss plant in a terrarium. I kept them in separate pots for a month and watered them a lot and they thrived and grew. I then placed them in a terrarium and the moss started to have hard, dry, yellow stems and it's leaves were turning yellow so i cut some parts off and i put them around to try to get them to root but they just decomposed.
The polka dot plant is looking a little leggy. I'm not sure if i should pinch it out some more because the individual stems only have a few leaves on top and i'm afraid they won't grow back if there are no leaves at all.
Also, if it pinch the tops off, can i leave the stems in the soil and will they root and grow? The low leaves are really just some parts I've pinched off that I'm trying to rot. I've pinched some parts of the plant so much that the stems dried up and ave become brown like sticks so I'm not sure what to do.
I keep the terrarium next to a window in indirect sunlight and it is under florescent lighting at night when I'm working for around 5 hours each day. I only spray it now that it's in a terrarium and sometimes i seal it. The soil is always moist and it's humid and you can see condensation on the glass so I don't think it's dying because im under watering it. Help!

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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

How long is it 'sealed'? air tight?

Fertilizer? What? How much?

Soil type?

How do you water? Tap water? Do you have an ionic exchange water softener?

At times, can you see a delineation through the glass between an upper fraction of the soil that is moist only (has air in it) and a lower portion that is soggy/saturated?


    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 4:10PM
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The picture is how the moss is looking right now.
it is usually sealed the whole day except for about 3 hours around the afternoon.
I only used regular potting soil to plant them in along with the soil that they came with when i bought them which i assume is also potting soil. I water using tap water and I do not have an ionic exchange water softener.
The soil is mostly all moist on the same level but slightly drier on the bottom. The activated charcoal under the soil seems a bit moist as well. The pebbles on the bottom are completely dry.

I heard not to use fertilizer because it would make the plants grow too fast and I don't have any at home as well.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 7:02PM
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This is how it looked like about two weeks ago. You can see how much it has degraded and how many leaves the polka dot plant lost

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 7:05PM
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I'm also not sure if I should leave the fallen leaves in the bowl or take them out

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 1:30AM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Remove detritus from the soil surface - it can be a source of disease.

Are there new leaves on the PD plant that are looking ok?

I wouldn't seal the container up completely. That raises r-humidity surrounding the plants to 100% and provides the conditions fungi need to reproduce.


    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 11:56AM
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New Leaves on the Polka Dot plant are looking strong but they don't grow nearly as quickly as when i had them in the pot and they are leggy.

Any tips on the stems rooting in the soil? or should i just remove them altogether.

also is there hope for my selaginella moss? It has completely lost it's bright green color and is now a dull green.brown and has roots poking through the soil without leaves.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 2:30PM
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Will the polka dot plant die if i pinch off all the leaves? what do I do if there are no leaves on the bottom but a lot of top?

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 6:55PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

I'm not sure what you might have going on there - what might be working against your plant's vitality. Leaves are your plant's food source, so you should limit how much foliage you remove - especially when the plant is weak. I wouldn't remove any living leaves until the plant has recovered, THEN you can prune it back and it will rebound as a fuller plant.

I guess I'd just wait on the moss & see if it comes back from the rhizomes.


    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 9:29PM
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paul_(z5 MI)

Polka needs more light. It's leggy because the light levels are too low.

The selag looks like it can recover.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 2:03PM
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