White crust on philodendron micans leaves

JessLikesStuffJuly 22, 2013

Hi all,

I brought home a new adoptee from Lowe's tonight but one thing has me puzzled. I see that some of the leaves have a white crusty substance on them that look similar to what I imagine salt deposits would look like. It scratches off with my fingernail (I only tried gently doing this on one leaf) and wetting a q-tip and running it over the spots gets a lot of nasty dark crud off the leaves, but the white remains. Is this a fungal infection of some sort and if so, how to treat it? I have another micans that also seems to have some white crust on it.

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sradleye

tap water?

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 11:13PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

Likely residue from guttation. If so, getting rained on should remove it, but don't forget it's outside. This plant burns very easily.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 9:15AM
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dellis326 (Danny)

Taste it, if it's sweet then it is possibly guttation. It could also just be dust sticking to the moisture from excessive transpiration. Could be hard water scale if they were misting or hosing off the plants.

Either hose it off or give it a good shower for a few minutes and let it dry up and see if it goes away. You might need to gently rub the leaves between your fingers.

Then, after it dries, if it is still there explore other more troubling issues like fungus.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 10:11AM
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asleep_in_the_garden

Wonder if the "black crud" was actually the velvet covering coming off..?

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 10:35AM
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tropicbreezent

I'd suspect it's just water stains, minerals out of dried up water, the way it collects along the leaf margin. Fungus usually kills off plant tissue below and that would show.

Philodendron hederaceum var. hederaceum is the correct name, P. micans is a synonym.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 11:53PM
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asleep_in_the_garden

Hi gang.

I always thought that for some time micans was thought to be it's own kind of philo but later the powers that be stated that it had been a hederaceum like the others(like those called oxicardium and medio-picta for example) all along only showing different traits in a similar way to people(the comparison I seem to remember),in that although we come in different shapes,sizes,colors etc.,we are all homo sapiens sapiens.

Like mentioned upthread,I'd be curious to know if you were getting your water,Jess...come back when you can,okay? :)

    Bookmark   July 24, 2013 at 11:24AM
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JessLikesStuff

Hi all,
Thanks for all the helpful suggestions! I tasted it and I can't say it tastes sweet so probably not guttation. It would not surprise me at all if Lowe's was misting or watering the plants with a hose so I can definitely see it being hard water scale or mineral deposits. The leaves look very healthy and don't seem to show any signs of tissue damage. Asleep, I haven't had the chance to give them a proper shower yet, but in the next day or two I think I will, and it could be that I rubbed the velvet coating off with the q-tip. Also good to know the correct name of the plant! :-)

    Bookmark   July 24, 2013 at 12:09PM
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birdsnblooms

Hi Danny..Do you make it a habit tasting plants? Gutation or other fluids?
Please be careful.
Even if a plant isn't toxic, some ppl have allergic reactions.

Asleep. I'm perplexed. Why would purple velvet come off? I honestly don't understand.
If purple was washed off entirely, would the leaf be green?

    Bookmark   July 24, 2013 at 3:53PM
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dellis326 (Danny)

Hi Toni, I don't as a rule but I have a number of drippy aroids and get the stuff all over me whenever I get around them. Two of my philodendrons drip so much that I won't even touch them, I use tweezers or gloves if I need to handle them.

Tropic makes a good point about tissue damage too.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2013 at 10:15PM
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asleep_in_the_garden

Oh hi Toni!

Jess said: "It scratches off with my fingernail (I only tried gently doing this on one leaf) and wetting a q-tip and running it over the spots gets a lot of nasty dark crud off the leaves, but the white remains."

That's pretty much what I was getting at,..I figured the nasty dark crud was velvet coming off the leaf where she had run it over spots. :)

    Bookmark   July 25, 2013 at 12:07AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

My plant has the same residue at the tips. It doesn't get misted, or showered (or watered) with tap water. The leaves on this plant are extremely easy to damage, I try not to touch them at all except when I'm guiding the vines up their little trellis.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2013 at 9:12AM
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