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Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Posted by MojaveLove 5 (My Page) on
Sun, Feb 20, 11 at 17:04

I've been sick the last few days and was desperate to get out of the house so went to HD to get a hanging plant. I've been looking for Hoyas - found one at a great nursery by me but was looking for something bigger. Been to two HDs and they all look horrible and most have mealy. So I decided to get a Pothos even though I find them kind of boring. I found one gorgeous Marble Queen - mealies. Then I found a diamond in the rough Golden Pothos - it doesn't have pests, is full and healthy and the leaves are pretty much flawless and shiny without any water spots. Couldn't believe it. Anyway, part one of my question is, if you have one tell me about what to expect :) I have a nice place to put it but am unsure about its water needs. It doesn't have much golden to it, will that increase with better sunlight?

Also, my fiance is fine with all of my plants but asked that I make sure that there aren't any soil pests. I brought home a Chinese Evergreen about a year ago and he watered it for me one day and said there were a bunch of centipede looking things in it. I checked the next day and didn't see any, and haven't seen any since, so that's as much of a description as I can give. What were they? I'm really creeped out by whatever they are. How does one check for soil pests and is there anything I can do to make sure I kill anything in the soil of my Pothos? I thought I read somewhere on here to add some peroxide or rubbing alcohol or something like that to water.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Mojave, I sometimes use homemade compost for my houseplants & bugs get brought in, then end up in the plant trays after watering... small earthworms, millipedes, centipedes, roly-polys & etc.

Centipedes eat worms & other bugs, while millipedes eat decomposing plant matter; either way, they're not really "pests" in that they pose much danger to indoor things such as people, pets & furniture or your plants themselves. I think mostly they either crawl away & dry up someplace (then get vacuumed up) or hang out in the pots to do their thing, but get chased out temporarily by too much water.

Most actual soil pests (such as nematodes, fungus gnats & other bugs with a larval phase that lives in soil) are going to be an issue with water-retentive soils and/or over-watering. If soil pests are a big concern for you, a potting medium that does not hold water is something you may want to investigate. HOWEVER, the dynamics of plant care change significantly if the potting medium does not hold water. Check out some of the soil discussions on this forum.

Or search for the names of soil pests to see how others deal with them. I wouldn't advise treating a problem that doesn't exist for you at this time.

That said, most of my plants are in soil & the only bugs I see are the ones I mentioned earlier; I've been growing houseplants for many, many years & never had any actual pests in the soil. Leaf pests, yes :(


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Hi Mojave. You said you found a diamond in the Pothos.. a real diamond? lol.

There are several types of Pothos. Some w/a lot of variegation, some with a little, others mostly green. Green and white and green and yellow. Even different shaped leaves.

You want my honest opinion? I think you wanted a plant so bad, you bought the Pothos for the sake of getting a plant. lol..Don't feel bad..Been there done that. Fortunately, I stopped after 200 plants..lol..Don't want duplicates or plants I'm not interested in..

Watering needs. I let soil dry a little between waterings, never keep muddy or let bottom of pot sit in water. When you water, soak the entire rootball.
When the soil looks a tad crumbly, give it another drink.

There's no set watering schedule. It depends on room temp and sun. The warmer the room, the faster soil dries.
In summer, Pothos should be placed in bright light but never south or west, direct sun. Leaves can burn.

How far away was the Pothos from the mealy'd Hoyas?? It's terrible HD sells plants packed with insects, let alone Mealy, which I find almost impossible to rid.

About your Aglaonema/Chinese Evergreen, when you bought it was the pot in or outdoors?
Sometimes milipedes are found in soil. Creepy looking things, yuck..However, it's strange you never saw them.
When the plant is watered, milipedes crawl to the top. They don't vanish in thin air. lol.
By chance, did you summer your CE outside, or repot in fresh soil?

The most common insects found in soil are Fungus Gnats, Milipedes, and Soil Mealy.
But, I wouldn't worry about, or add anything unless you see one. Insects are treated according to the type.

To prevent Fungus Gnats, don't over-water. Proper watering and fresh, circulating air is a good start. Pothos aren't humidity hogs, but too dry an environment can cause problems. They enjoy some humidity. I mist Pothos daily, and shower (foliage) in the sink, once a week.

Please, don't add Peroxide or Rubbing Alcohol in the soil.

Some people use Rubbing Alcohol when a plant gets Mealy Bug. Leaves are swiped w/the alcohol. Perhaps that's what you're thinking?

I mix a batch of household, non-chemical products and spray plants, 3-4 times a month, as a preventative.
You'll need a mister, 2-4 drops dish soap, (not Dawn) citrus peel or juice, hot pepper, preferably liquid, and garlic. I mix all ingredients, shake, and keep overnight. The following day, shake mister again, then spray plants.
Thank God my plants are insect-free.

For Scale Bug I add the same ingredients above, plus a capful of Fish Emulsion. Spray plant thoroughly.
When FE is added, leftovers must be discarded. It can't be kept overnight.

Mojave, if you're worried about pests, check your plant daily..if anything I'd be concerned about Mealy since HD's other plants were infested. Good luck, Toni


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Toni, hydrogen peroxide (3%) is a great 'tonic' to use on house plants and in soil. For household peroxide, add about an ounce per quart of water. You can apply this to the soil when watering or spray it on your plants.

What I DON'T know is what effect it would have on soil borne insects...not much, I wouldn't think.

Mojave can put her plants into a tub or pan and let them sit in water for an hour or so. Any critters such as centipedes, millipedes, earthworms, sowbugs, etc., will likely end up trying to escape.

Above ground pests such as mealybugs can be controlled with a solution of one part isopropyl alcohol to three parts water, and applied as a mist. Do not use this for the soil.


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Hi Rhizo. What does Peroxide do for plants? What type of tonic?
The reason I focused on Milipedes is because of Mojave's description of the insects her husband saw. I find it weird how they vanashed though..lol..


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Hydrogen peroxide provides extra oxygen to the root zone, and helps control harmful microbes. Here's some more info on it.

Hydrogen peroxide in containers

I don't think it would kill larger organisms like insects. I've never had a problem with bugs when growing in gritty soils. They tend to prefer fine, organic soils like decomposing peat or topsoil.


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Thanks Penfold. But no one mentioned insects. lol

I use soils and peat, and thank God, don't have insect problems. Watch, tomorrow all my plants will be infested..lol..Toni


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Didn't you just mention insects in the post before mine? Or are you referring to my link? That was just an answer to your question about the benefits of H2O2 for plants. I was only guessing that it would be useless in treating complex organisms like insects.


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Penfold.. Yep, I meant your link..lol. Too funny.
Too bad Peroxide didn't kill insects, diseases, and all other soil/foliage problems. A kind of, All-in-One productm
@ .79. lol.
But seriously Pen, I was referring to your link.

The use of Peroxide sounds conflicting.
I'm unsure what it is, other than water. The extra O...oxygen? If the cap isn't replaced, Peroxide is nothing but H2o. Hmmm. Toni


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Ok, I see now :)

And yes, H2O2 is water with an extra oxygen atom. Since H20 is a stable molecule, the highly reactive extra O is free to destroy organic molecules (like those in simple bacteria, fungus, etc), or combine with another free O to form stable O2 which benefits the roots. I consider it a band-aid solution for dealing with temporary soil/root problems; not necessary for everyday use. And I believe it contains some sort of stabilizer so that the extra oxygen doesn't go *poof* as soon as you open the bottle.


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Pen, I have to be honest. I'm terrible when it comes to Chemistry, but you explained in a fashion that made sense. Had to Google definitions for a few words though. lol.

I thought the added 2 wasn't stable which is the reason it turned to water, intermingled into air. lol..like I said, I know nothing about Chemistry, Pen. Still, I appreciate you taking time and patience explaining.


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

I've used Peroxide on orchids for bacterial problems. I'm not sure how well it works but it is highly recommended by orchid growers. It is used on the roots and leaves. One just pours it over the affected area.

Toni, as far as I can see, peroxide doesn't hurt but does seem help. I've used it straight on orchid roots when repotting. Many times, orchids bought in certain big-box stores come home with rotting roots. When I repot, I remove all the soggy media, cut off the rotted roots and flush with peroxide, straight from the bottle. Then it goes into new, clean mix. When you pour it over any diseased part, it fizzes up and when it stops fizzing, you can rinse it off.

I don't know why it helps except to add additional oxygen to the infection and speed healing.

Jane


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Hey Jane..
Jane I'm in favor of trying new or possibly, old ways. Think you know that. :)

So, are you saying you use Peroxide on orchids when there's a problem, as a preventative or both?

I'll keep it in mind.

Holly, are you getting all this? lol. Toni


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

LOL did I really say I found a diamond in it? I wish. I meant diamond in the rough, kind of another way of saying "I found a true gem" or something lol

You're right you caught me, lol, I only bought it because I wanted a plant and it was the right size for the spot I had in mind. When I first met my fiance he had minimal furniture and one room was painted. Now most of the walls are painted and I'm putting plants everywhere I can lol! So far he just laughs at my new hobby. I think my first plant was the Chinese Evergreen. It's been the only one to bloom for me so far too. In fact it wouldn't stop for MONTHS, probably around 4 months actually, and I wanted it to stop, the flowers are nothing special and it needs more leaves. Don't know if blooming a Chinese Evergreen is anything to celebrate over as nothing else I have has bloomed (so I don't have the "bloom touch" yet, just the "survival touch"), including my Peace Lily (though I know it's because of lighting but I like where it is lol).

I couldn't stop thinking about that darn Marble Queen Pothos that I stopped at a nursery by me. I love that nursery, they have EVERYTHING. They have tons of bonsai and orchid pots, sooo many plants and they are all in good shape, even the big ones. Tons of cacti & succulents (even have a few Hummel's Sunset Jades) and they even have those weird air plants now. Toni, not sure where in IL you are but I'm talking about Peshe's up in Des Plaines. I haven't been there in ages before recent but it is GREAT.


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Mojave..I thought you found a genuine, 50,000,00 diamond..You could really stock up on plants then, and add a green house to boot..lol. I know what you mean about finding a true gem, now, but took it literally after reading your thread, last night..lolol..

LOl, I knew it! But don't feel bad..Our minds are made up, we're going to find a terrific plant, go hunting, and come up empty-handed. One reason I enjoy ordering online..There's hundreds of online nurseries plus Ebay and now Amazon, and thousands of plants to choose from.

Have you ever gone to Ted's in Tinley Park? I love that nursery.

Ever hear of Brookfield Zoo? If so, I live a couple miles away. SW of Chicago. My sister lives in Norridge, brother in Mount Prospect. Another sister and brother in Chicago. My brother is a Chicago Police Officer, so he has to live in the city. Are you in Des Plaines? You don't have to be specific.

You should be happy your Chinese Evergreen bloomed. Did it berry, too? Flowers and red berries blend nicely. It's true, CE's flowers aren't the prettiest flower around, but if you like Peace Lily blooms, you should enjoy CE flowers too. They're very similiar in looks. I'm happy when one of my Aglaos/CE's bloom. lol.

I hope your wall is painted Semi-Gloss White..My favorite color, and easy to clean. On bright days, sun reflects off walls, then bounces off plants. Or, if you're like me, don't care for winter, gray days, darkness, the brigtness of this paint color elates ones mood, too.

What type of fertilize do you use? A balanced is best for CE's. 5-5-5, 10-10-10, etc.

It's great your fiance has a sense of humor..he can continue laughing while you buy more plants..lol.
Deep down he probably enjoys greens. Besides, women have certain advantages over men..lol..also, incite his interest, involve him. Ask if he likes one plant more than another, etc..he'll feel it's his decision, 'a macho thing.' lol.

Mo, I've been to Pesche's in Des Plaines a few times. But I heard they closed their doors a couple years ago..Maybe they changed their minds, new owners, or it was a rumor.
It's been a few years since we've been there though. The last time, they had one of the most beautiful Aglaonemas, 'Chinese Evergreens' I'd ever seen..but it cost 35.00..way too much for one plant.
We met a couple, 'online, who live way up north, by Great America. We stopped at Jamacan Gardens first, then Pesche's. We had a really nice time.

I'll have to see about going to Pesches. Maybe, if it doesn't snow or rain, we'll head out there this wkend.
Do you plan on going back in the near future? Toni


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

I will probably be stopping there every once in a while, but am trying to hold back on the plant stuff until spring. Want me to stop in to look at something specific? I'll ask them about closing next time I'm in. I'm actually sort of between homes lol - my parents live in that area but I will be up near McHenry soon where my fiance is.

I've heard of Ted's but haven't been there yet it's pretty far. Oh, did you know Shoal Creek Succulents (website if you haven't seen it, it's one of my favorite cactus websites) is in Elgin? You can contact them about making a visit but have to make an appointment. I haven't been there but plan on visiting sometime this year. I feel like I would have to go with the intent of buying a few if they're making the effort to see me for an appointment.

Right now I don't use fertilizer on my tropicals because they were planted in potting soil with miracle-grow already in it. I do have Cactus fertilizer for my cacti and succulents, need to use it every watering on my Aloe that I told you about, where it is in zero organic medium. My Sans was one of the first plants I bought and it is that Miracle Grow potting soil. Thankfully it can withstand almost anything lol

I loooooved going to Brookfield Zoo, went there all the time when I was a kid! :) I always liked the Reptiles more than anything, I was a weird kid. In the summer I joke with my fiance that I'm going to catch a frog and keep it as a pet, there are frogs all over the place by him because it is so swampy in that area. Maybe I'll be one of those lucky people that finds one hibernating in their plants next winter! Haha

Peshe's has gorgeous plants but I agree it's really hard to spend that kind of money on them, not matter how healthy they are.

I know he secretly loves the plants (so far). He is a big clean freak and I told him they clean the air! Plus they make it so happy in there. In my opinion at least. He at least tries to be interested, he will see me staring at them and poking around them and always asks how the plants are even if he doesn't really care lol


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Hi Mojave...If you don't mind checking prices and types of plants at Pesches, I'd appreciate it. But it's not necessary..Are plants labeled? If so, are tags gerneic, eg: foliage plant,' or an actual name of plant?

I adore Ted's Nursery..When you first walk in, there's room after room of cactus and succulents. From babies to huge trees.
He had a 6-7' variegated PonyTail plant..it was a beauty. They tried rooting shoots, but they never worked. When I asked its price, the owner jokingly said, you'd have to mortgage your house..lol..Other nurseries were after this plant since the 50's..he got hold of it some time in the 1930's. The last time we went there, 'now that the owner is up in age, it was thrown together with other trees..Very underpotted, and leaning over..They said I could have it for 25.00..I declined..it looked horrible, and would need 2 big men to lift.
Beyond the C&S room, are huge gh's filled with tropicals. 4" pots and up. Many rare.
They also have several other gh's filled w/annuals and perrenials from spring to summer.

Mojave, I've been shopping at ShoalCreek before the new owners bought it. I have many SC sux. One day I'd like to visit their gh in Elgen. The owner and I have talked many times..she's a really nice person. I wish them luck..
Their plants are super healthy, and good size.
I know what you mean feeling obligated to buy something after making an appt. I'd feel the same..but while making an appt, I email or call her, and explain I'm looking for small, 4" succulents..she's very understanding.
Have you ever ordered from SC?

I'm so upset MG is now adding fertilizer in their packaged soils. Since doing this, they've increased prices. I'd rather buy soil w/o the fertilizer..This way I'll know when and how much fertilizer is needed. I use different fertilizers depending on plant type, so prefer using my own..don't need theirs. I feel like writing to MG company and complaining...

My son has an Iguana, Iggy..lol..he got Iggy as a baby, 6-7"..he's now 48" long, from head to tip of tail.
I haven't been to Lincoln Park or Brookfield Zoo in years. LP area is way too congested. Way too much traffic. Brookfield's Zoos prices are terribly high..We used to ride our bikes, 'no parking costs,' on Tues..Tues was a free day..The last time we went, an emaployee said free days started in Oct..I do not like cold, and wouldn't enjoy walking around when temps are 50F and raining.
They charged 1.25 for a can of pop back in the mid 90's. It's probably 3.00 now..I can buy a 12-pack at that price. lol..

Hey Mojave, that's a great excuse..'plants clean air'..lol..If he believes it, explain how clean your air would be with 100 plants..You'd have the cleanest home in IL..lol.

I ordered a plant on Ebay, Alcasia 'Stingray,' last wk.
The owner wrote, plants wouldn't be shipped until they checked buyer's weather. I assumed the Alo wouldn't arrive at least another month..it arrived today. I wasn't expecting it so early, so I didn't check the mail until after noon. Sure enough, there saw a box..it's very cold out today..and the porch is semi-shade. It was outside at least 2 hours..darn! We'll see how it does..


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

I'll try checking Pesche's next week for you. From what I saw they were all labeled pretty decently. I don't recall any generic names, but many weren't exact (IE bought a Hoya compacta there and it was labeled Hoya green rope)

I have never ordered from Shoal Creek, but was thrilled to find a C&S place in the area. Really happy to hear it's great! Their pics look good on their website but they don't have them for every plant unfortunately.

I heard Ted's is amazing for C&S plants. It's soooo far from me though, I'm about 20 minutes away from Wisconsin, and 30 minutes away from the nearest expressway. I grew up in or right next to the city so it's a bit different for me out here lol. Probably why I took up the plant hobby!

That's really sad about that large ponytail plant :/ it would be interesting to know the price tag on it when it was healthy. I can't believe they're selling it for $25 now!!

Hm...the aloe MIGHT be ok, did he include a heating pack with it? Today was pretty cold. If it's a cold hardy kind you'll probably be ok. Maybe a good q for the C&S crowd!

When I bought the MG potting soil I was really unhappy that it had fertilizer in it. Sure enough, weeks later the salt was already crusting on the top. So far all of the plants in it are surviving but really need to get out.


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Please don't go to Pesche's on my account, Mojave.
I'm sure they're large, 6" or bigger, are out of my price range, but I was curious about smaller plants, especially rarer succulents.

Yep, SC really has nice, healthy succulents, and prices are more than reasonable. Some time when you're sitting around, check out their site.

One day I'll got back to Ted's..see if they still have the Ponytail, see what they want..With some work, it'd be the prettiest PT ever. I have a variegated, green and white stripes..the variegated Ted's has is green w/yellow speckles, semi-wavy, nearing the floor.

Sorry. not an Aloe, it's an Alocasia, Alo for short. A tropical plant. No, heating pad..but it got here so fast. I paid Wednesday, it'd arrived today, Fri. I'll see what it looks like tomorrow, check foliage for frost bite.

Wow, you saw crusting weeks after using MG with fertilizer? That's fast. Did you add your own fertilizer, too? Was it a clay pot?
That's one reason it's a good idea to flush soil. Run water, via a hose, 'kitchen sink/tub' once a month.
Salt buildup is common, but when plants are over-fertilized it's bound to happen more often.

I'm sooo tired. lol. Toni


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Nope, haven't fertilized them since I got them in that soil. My Sans is in a clay pot and my Chinese Evergreen is in a plastic pot. What's funny is I planted my Spath in the same stuff, did it months ago, and there's no crusting. There is with the other two.

I literally drive right by Pesche's on my drive down there from work, plus I like going in there so it's not a problem at all, just another reason to go in lol. I didn't look at the prices of the c&s plants but all of the 4" tropicals are $7. The two times I've been there they haven't had Gasteria :( but maybe with their new shipment yesterday they'll have some? I'll have to ask. They have a nice array but I don't know if there is anything "rare" there. I mentioned this somewhere but I was surprised to see they had two Hummel's Sunset Jades, they were a fairly good size too so might be $$. I'll have to take a closer look. Admittedly, I don't know as much about cacti and they have a ton of them.

What is the difference between flushing and a regular watering, just lots more water? I tried flushing my Sans this morning and I just gave it a ton of water and lots came out. The first time it was clear, I did it again and it had a dirty tint to it.

Also, back to that MG potting soil - poked the soil of my Chinese Evergreen (I think my first plant from last April or Mayish) and it's still wet from....a week ago? And it is really compacted. No give when I poked it or anything, just hard. That one will need to be the first to repot! I'm not looking forward to making the gritty mix lol but I know I'll be happy once I'm done.


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Are you sure it's crust and not something more ominous?

If you're heading towards Pesche's, 'great excuse to check new arrivals, lol,' that's one thing, but please don't go on my account..the price of gas is so high, it's getting to the point I'm ready to ride my bike everywhere. lol. Too bad there's no way to haul groceries, plants, etc, on a bike.

Cactus are okay, but I adore succulents..
Some are potted in clay, others in plastic. Thank God my plants don't get much if any crusting.

Yep, flushing is allowing a good amount of water through soil, more than a normal watering, then letting it run out of drainage holes.
It's best done outside with garden hose. I set the hose inside a pot until soil is saturated, and excess water rungs through drainage holes.
I hardly flush in winter, since most plants are not fertilized, Oct-Feb/March.
IMO, rain does a great flushing job. In fact, I usually fertrilize way before or after storms. What's the point fertilizing if it'll be flushed out? lol.

Wonder why your CE soil is still wet? Of course, it happens for different reasons. Soil takes longer to dry if the room is cool. Large pots holding excess soil dries slower.
Pot material makes a difference too. Ceramic keeps soil wet longer than plastic or clay.

My plants get watered when soil is dry. I let sux dry completely in winter. So, a 4" potted succulent needs water every third day. Tropicals, 4-5th days. It depends on plant type, room, humidity and sun.

I've been mixing home-made soils for years. Again, ingredients depend on plant. Toni


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

It's interesting to see how some succulents fare better than others right now. I sometimes will go a week or two without watering and many of them are just fine with it - others, as you've seen me mention before, get all wrinkled up and mad. I have one that I swear would survive a month or more without water. I water it when I water my Jade because the Jade takes a while to dry out. I wait until it starts to wrinkle. The other one though, Haworthia resendeana, is always happy with me. Any hen and chicks, not at all but that's because of our bad light up here.


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Howdy Mojave...How was your weekend? Did you make it to any plant storess? lol

Can you ID your succulents? I mean, do you know which are Crassulas, 'besides Jades, etc?
The reason I'm asking is, some succulents flower in winter, others in summer, and a few year round, like. E. Crown of Thorns.
Also, some succulents need more water than others. It depends on type, pot size & material, soil, room temp and sun.

My Crown of Thorns are very thirsty plants. Even though the room is cool to cold, 'when we have sun,' south and west windows, especially west, sun can scorch leaves.
COT's are in 4 and 5" pots, some clay others plastic..The soil dries as fast as 2 or 3 days. All are underpotted..
This spring, most sux are going in 1" larger pots..'which means hunting for 5 and 6" sizes..sigh..At a decent cost to boot..lol.

Do you know the type of succulent that gets watered once a month? What type of soil is it in?

Succulents need well-draining soil or else you'll have problems after problems. Especially if the room is chilly.
I too let some sux soil dry to the point of shriveling, but I don't like seeing shriveled leaves..lol..
You have pics? Toni


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RE: Soil pests question and my new Pothos

Ha - nope I restrained myself! First time in weeks...hehe...

I ordered back in the fall from a lady in California that has a greenhouse and sells lots of succulents. The soil is actually pretty good, has a good amount of perlite in it and some bark. I can tell the plants are getting pretty root bound now but want to wait until spring to repot, mostly because I have to do it in the garage and don't want them to freeze. These little guys are in 2" plastic pots, all rooted cuttings.

I have two other Crassulas other than my gollum Jade. One is a string of buttons. When I got it it was flowering but then it stopped because of whatever reason. I have it in a Southern window and it loves it. It never wilts and grows at a decent rate so I think watering it every week or two is working for it. The other one is a Crassula marchandii, not a popular Crassula at all and only one other member in the C&S group has one, though Norma knew what it was and said it is a hybrid. It's pretty finicky. I actually started a thread on it if you are interested, I'll post the link. The cutting I got from her had bloomed because I could see where the flower stem was and it was removed. Now it is splitting into two "branches" there which is exciting! So I think I'll keep that one around as pathetic looking as it is. It's one of mine that really likes the water.

From her I also have a Sempervivum and two dumb Hens and Chicks (I don't like them, and they do not like me either, they started to stretch out and are fine now in a southern window but they look ridiculous with a neck and compacted head on top - I want to get rid of them but feel like I'm doing something really bad by tossing a living thing out). I ordered a "surprise" mix and didn't have a say in what I got, I just told her to keep in mind that I live in Illinois and they'll be inside lol. The Haworthia too of course that I mentioned. Two Aloes (I think one is a marlothii seedling, the one in the pure oil-dry and the other is a variegata which needs a lot more water than the marlothii right now, its leaves started to fold on me). One thing that's weird with my Aloe variegata is I swear it eats the dirt. The dirt keeps disappearing. When I bought it from HD it was healthy but a lot of dirt was missing. It was pretty much only any dirt that was stuck to the roots. Brought it home, threw in C&S potting soil laying around to hold it over until spring, and it ate it up again. It's bizarre and I don't know what the heck is happening to the dirt, but about 1/3 to 1/2 of it disappears. It clearly has a brain and knows it wouldn't do well in it! So I am obliging to its wishes and will not add anymore dirt for now. It's a really slow grower, both Aloes are. Hopefully they step it up a bit now that spring is coming - we have bulbs starting to poke through the soil already.

I also have a Hoya compacta and a Sansevieria. Hoya is a rooted cutting so that won't do anything for years lol - the Sansevieria just sits there I swear it doesn't grow. I think that covers it. I really want a Gasteria next. Someone in the C&S forum had a pot full of Gasteria offsets and it looked really cool, and I guess they do great as houseplants.

Here is a link that might be useful: Crassula marchandii thread


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