Sad dracaena lemon lime plant

alwayspickles(6)September 2, 2011

I rescued this plant from Home Depot about 6 weeks ago. It was kind of sad looking even then, but after I repotted it, it started to get brown edges over most of the leaves. (See photos in link) I thought it could have been the shock of repotting, but I've also read that the brown edges are from watering issues. Some say it's a sign of overwatering, some say it's underwatering, so I don't know.

I water it when the soil seems mostly dry down to the bottom. The new growth seems okay so far.

Any ideas on what I should be doing to help get this poor little guy in better health?

Thank you in advance!

Here is a link that might be useful: Sad dracaena lemon lime

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It's definately not from over-watering or repotting.
How much sun is it getting? Which direction?

It could be a fungal problem.

For the time being, keep your Dracaena out of direct south or west sun. Don't fertilize. Continue watering as you've been, and spray leaves daily, and/or shower once a week. If the soil is wet, aim at leaves only. Toni

    Bookmark   September 2, 2011 at 12:46PM
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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

Perhaps fluoride toxicity.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2011 at 5:51PM
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Hi Always, how is your plant doing--I also have one that was a discounted left over from summer--one stalk is doing fine the other must have been broken ? so it is just drying/dying--where as the other has new growth--any ideas? should I cut it back closer to the leaves ??? the entire plant is about 12-14 inches high.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2011 at 8:16PM
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Hi Mari, my plant is hanging in there--turns out there was a massive infestation of fungus gnats, which was pretty disgusting. After trying a few gnat-killing methods, I finally just repotted it because it was easier. And since then I haven't seen a single gnat, fortunately.

I suspect it might also have been reacting to the fluoride in the water too, so I've also switched to using bottled water.

But since this is such a slow-growing plant, I suspect it will be a while before I see any real improvement. The leaves all have brown edges and the new growth is coming in very slowly. Fingers crossed, though!

I'm afraid I don't know much about whether to cut back your plant or not--I'm glad you have at least one stalk that's doing well, though. Is the other stalk dying completely or just in parts?

    Bookmark   November 8, 2011 at 1:57PM
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Thanks Always
sounds like you are doing well--yes I was told no fluoride so I use filtered water--the not so happy stock is just drying out on the very top--with no life-maybe I am not patient enough-- plus I do mist it almost daily-
I just love this plant and hope it to flourish perhaps someone will be able to advise me--

    Bookmark   November 8, 2011 at 9:57PM
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Always, for some reason I can't open your picture.
Is anyone else having this problem??

I re-read what I wrote about over-watering. Over-watering can harm most plants, other than bogs.

In summer, when sun is strong or rooms/outdoors is hot, Dracaenas should be watered thoroughly, but allowed to dry somewhat between drinks.

Heat, harsh, summer sun and too dry soil will cause brown tips/leaves.
Some plants are fussy about chlorine..I keep old milk containers filled with tap water. Too many plants to use bottled water, lol.

Always, Fungus Gnats attack when soil stays constantly wet, air is dry, too humid, and stuffy.
Apparently, the soil wasn't drying between waterings which brought on gnats.

Changing soil was a great idea. But, in order to keep gnats away, soil really needs to dry between waterings, moreso now that winter is approaching. Gray days/low light, stuffy air, 'indoors.' They'll return.

Mari..if the stem broke, might as well cut it off. It will continue drying until dead.
Draceanas root well in water or soil. I prefer water. Remove broken branch a little below the break. Depending on height, the branch can be either cut in 8" sections or as is.
BTW, this will work on wood, not leaves.
Also, if you decide to root, cut bottom leaves. They can rot, espeically if rooted in water.

Good luck, Toni

    Bookmark   November 9, 2011 at 2:50PM
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I can't see your pic. I got this.
Sorry, that page was not found.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2011 at 2:57PM
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Just wanted to post an update -- thank you to those who suggested that the problem might be fungus gnats and/or the fluoride in the water. Turns out this poor little fellow did have a whopping infestation, but since I replanted him and switched to spring water, he's been doing much much better. His new leaves are completely green and free of any brown spots.

Thank you all again!

    Bookmark   June 17, 2012 at 11:11PM
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