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Weird fungus

Posted by caspervanheck none (My Page) on
Sun, Dec 29, 13 at 9:15

I've been having trouble with fungus for over a year now. Most of my succulents (including a whole row of crassula's, of which one was about 80cm tall) have died, and several bonsai trees have given up too.

A couple of months ago I thought I had 'beaten' it, by separating the infected plants to the balcony and letting them die in the winter cold. Only one crassula survived, and is now recovering in a separate room. Inside, all plants seemed okay.

However, a couple of days ago, I noticed the fungus again. The plant in question is a sapling of an existing tree, which ended up in a bowl, and somehow started growing. Aside from the fungus, the plant looks okay, and even now is growing quite nicely (even though it is in a shadowy spot, and is watered about once a week with half a cup of tapwater).

I fear that this fungus will overtake this plant too, and am quite desperate; I've tried 'green soap', which is supposed to work, and have even resorted to a fungicide. Neither worked.

Can anyone offer some insight into this fungus?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Weird fungus

This is mealy bug, highly contagious among plants, swab off w/ q tips dipped in alcohol every 2-3 days &/or discard plant(s). Must isolate them from other plants.

RE: Weird fungus

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a mid-MI (My Page) on
    Sun, Dec 29, 13 at 12:54

Agree that it's mealybug, and killing the adults with a Q-tip dipped in alcohol can keep adult populations in check. There's a problem with that method, though. The adults need to be mechanically removed with the Q-tip, and that method has no impact on the pests present that are in the crawler or instar larval stage. Eggs hatch about every 10 days at about 75*, with the interval increasing inversely with temperature.

You could try horticultural oil labeled 'Summer', 'Perfect', or 'All-Season' mixed with insecticidal soap, both at recommended rates, neem oil and alcohol at 2 week intervals (ask for recipe if you want it), or spray with Bayer 3-in-1 insect/mite/fungal control. This systemic product is listed as safe for use on houseplants, but the spraying needs to be done outdoors.

I'm really sorry you lost so many plants to this pest, especially since it's not that difficult to control once you figure out what it responds to. Good luck!


RE: Weird fungus

I've used a fungicide earlier, so I guess I know why that didn't work.

I realized something; one of the plants that wasn't affected (a quite large and somewhat sickly apple tree, grown from a discarded piece of apple) had an fly issue during the same period, and I used a environmentally responsible insecticide on it. I still have a bit, and will see if the other plants respond the same way.

Thank you!

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