I need help to revive

BrittanyFaucett(7)November 6, 2013

Thank you for checking out my post. I just got married and my husband brought this poor, pitiful plant with him and I just don't know what to do to save it... if anything at all. The plant was given to his family at his grandmother's funeral a few months ago and therefore it has quite a bit of sentimental meaning to him. He said he 'thinks' it is Devil's Ivy but we are not sure. We would greatly appreciate any advice or comments on A) What type of plant is this? And B) what can we do to revive the poor thing? And C) it is supposed to grow up the pole, how can I help it with that. The picture I posted is what it looks like now. I just trimmed quite a bit of dead leaves from the plant as you can see laying around the pot. We keep it inside in indirect light and I have been watering it about once a week for the past month, before that it was cared for by my husband who says he watered it 'when he thought about it.' Thank you SO MUCH!!
I posted this earlier on the plant identification forum and someone suggested that it may be Syngonium podophyllum. I am pretty sure that this is correct. Another user suggested I try this forum for more details on how to save the poor thing. Does anyone have any tips on propagation that could be of help? Or any other suggestions? Thanks so much!!!
Here is the link to the original post, it has more pictures: http://forums2.gardenweb.com/forums/load/namegal/msg111251438343.html?4

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Brittany....Welcome, Congrats, and Hello!!

Your new plant is a Syngonium. I can't tell which species, but it'd not Devil's Ivy.

When was the last time it was repotted? How fast does soil take to dry?

Syngonium is a vine, so it's best growing up the pole, otherwise it'll lean.

Clips are available to attach vines but for the time being, ti-backs used for trash bags will do.

Remove all brown and yellow leaves. It will probably look bare, but that's not a problem..Babies will grow, or should.

Water when soil feels a little dry..This time of year, air is dry indoors, therefore soil dries faster..Especially if the plant is root bound.

Do you know how to measure pot for size?
Using ruler or measureing tape, measure one side of container across to the opposite side. That's how pot size is determined.

Are roots sticking on top of soil or out of drainage holes?


    Bookmark   November 6, 2013 at 5:58PM
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Actually, yes, the roots are wanting to bust out... I can't believe I haven't already thought to repot it. We have only had it about 6 months (well, I have had it only 1month but hubby has had it for 6). I have a bigger planter for it now but I'm still hesitant to move it, I'm afraid I'll mess up and put the final nail in the coffin for this lil fella. I think this must have happened due to overwatering because I found the pot had no drainage holes at the bottom so it has likely been drowning. Wish me luck with the transfer!! I have been researching propagation and I have found so many very different instructions. Just take a clipping and set it in water? I bought rooting hormone but there are no directions on the bottle and I can't seem to find anything more detailed than to 'apply' the hormone... But I'm obviously a novice at this and I don't know how it should be applied. It's powder, so pour some powder in the water?? Sorry I'm so clueless, but I can't thank you enough for your advice!!

    Bookmark   November 6, 2013 at 8:31PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

If you READ THE LABEL, you'll learn how to use the product. Read the entire label, front and back. If something doesn't make sense after that, ask us.

The labels on these products are pretty thorough.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2013 at 10:02PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

If you READ THE LABEL, you'll learn how to use the product. Read the entire label, front and back. If something doesn't make sense after that, ask us.

The labels on these products are pretty thorough.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2013 at 10:03PM
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this plant roots VERY well in just plain water, I do it all the time with no problem. This plant is also a pretty fast grower, so don't worry about cutting most of its leaves off.

Rooting hormone works somewhat. But I would imagine you won't need it for this plant, but if you do, you just cut off a stem, wet the stem in some water and dip it in the powder and plant it in soil, easy as that.

But yes, having any plant in a pot with no drainage holes is a death sentence, especially for people with no to little experience with plants. All you need to do is buy some good soil and a pot with holes and your good to go. You'll find a lot of info here for soil, but if that's too much for you, just go to a local nursery and get soil there, don't go to any big box stores and buy miracle grow or some other cheap soil, they're horrible for plants and can carry bugs and fungus...its worth spending the few extra dollars...and your plant will be very thankful and reward you with beautiful growth.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2013 at 11:22PM
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dellis326 (Danny)

This thing might die if you leave it as it is so don't feel hesitant to do some work with it.

If the pot is in that bad of condition you will really improve your chances of bringing this plant back by removing as much of the old soil off of the roots and cutting off any and all of the roots that are soft, mushy, smell bad or in any other way damaged.

If you are going too use plain old store bought potting soil should should mix it at least half and half with an orchid potting mix so you'll end up with a very fast draining soil and will hold moisture and still allow air to reach the roots. You can increase the orchid mix up to 3/4's of the mix if you want. Firm the soil into the roots but don't tightly pack it down.

When watering, give enough water so that it drains out of the bottom of the pot. The soil will save enough of it for the plant but draining will also wash out any of the mineral salts that will build up over time. Stick your finger into the soil and feel if it's damp a few days after watering. Water again when it feels dry an inch or two under the surface.

Syngonium cuttings can be started in water but don't use the rooting hormone if your do that. It is for starting cuttings in a rooting mix or soil. There are guidelines for using RootBoost in the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: rootboost-rooting-hormone/overview

    Bookmark   November 6, 2013 at 11:55PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

You don't have one plant, you have many, with roots already. I'm not sure if your goal is to revive a single plant, or to have many, or kind of start over with one smaller version?

This isn't the kind of plant that generally requires any type of hormone to take root, just an appropriate cutting. There may a few vines there that could be cuttings, but some closeups of them would help determine for sure. It would be a lot easier to just cut the roots into chunks if you're going away from the pole setup. Once you start gently working the plants apart from each other, you should be able to see where the 'main' plants emerge from the soil. I'd try to not slice through those, but on either side of them.

If you wanted to keep the pole, as established as parts look to be on the pole already, I would probably just separate/remove extraneous individuals, then let the already more exuberant ones have more space in the pot and on the pole. It would likely fit back in the same pot with plenty of new 'soil' after that.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2013 at 10:57AM
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