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Need help with Peace Lily

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by Laila on March 30, 2006 09:46 AM
Hi everyone,

I have a 2 year old Peace Lily. It's not looking too good. It's wilted. [Frown]

I had the two plants in glass and plastic jars filled with water. They were doing okay. I re-potted them just 3 days ago into a large pot and some soil. (The cheap kind from wal-mart for a dollar.) And at first it was looking great! Then it started to wilt. So I decided to put it back in the plastic and glass jars with the water. I use filtered water for them. They don't get direct light. And they are up high (to protect them from my naughty cat!).

Any advice, I would really appreciate it.

Do you think it was because I used the cheap potting soil?

Thanks!
by mrsmessy on April 01, 2006 03:48 AM
Were the roots damaged when the soil was added? That would make them unhappy. Water grown roots are more fragile than dirt grown roots.

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Bev
by Laila on April 01, 2006 05:32 AM
Hi:

I am not sure. The plant who looks healthier has brown roots while the bigger but less healthy looking plant has fairly white roots. I returned them to their water pots and they immediately perked back up. I am thinking to just keep them in water and change the water weekly. Would this be okay?

Thanks for replying, I really appreciate it.
by barleychown on April 01, 2006 06:08 AM
My guess would be that they wilted because the roots that have formed are "water roots" and they do not do well when transfered over to soil.

I'm not sure if they will be okay long term in water only...I would think they would be missing some nutrients in a water-only diet.

I would suggest transfering them over to soil slowly by adding a little potting soil to the vase of water they are in now, a handful or two a week...

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We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are.
by Laila on April 01, 2006 06:14 AM
Hi,

Thanks for replying. This is the first I have ever heard of water roots or soil roots.

I will try adding a handful of soil in a few days. Does the soil ever lose nutrients? And how can I add nutrients to the water?

The plant use to be very big and beautiful, now it's a small little thing.

Thanks for your help, I really appreciate it.
by Will Creed on April 01, 2006 08:27 AM
Roots developed in water can gradually change their cell structure so they can adapt to soil. However, that takes time and the plant often languishes during the transition period.

The hardest part is maintaining the proper soil moisture level while the roots are adapting to the soil. The best way to accomplish this is to put them into a very small pot. Then monitor the soil carefully and water it only when the surface of the soil is dry.

Gradually adding soil to the water often leads to root rot. I don't recommend it.
by Laila on April 01, 2006 07:19 PM
Oh, root rot, huh?

When I got the plants originally, they were in soil. Then I put them in water and they did fine. Would it be really bad if I kept them in water? They have been in water some time now and I don't want them to die. Someone mentioned lack of nutrients. Is there anyway I could get some nutrients into the water?

Thanks!
by Will Creed on April 01, 2006 11:13 PM
Laila,

You can keep them in water. Add a very tiny amount of plant food to the water. Use filtered or distilled water if your local water is hard.

Your peace lilies will not grow very much in water and eventually they will start to turn pale. You can move them to soil at any time.
by Laila on April 02, 2006 04:47 AM
How should I go about moving the plants to soil? By adding a handful every week or just by transfering them 100% at one time?

Thanks!
by Will Creed on April 02, 2006 05:18 AM
Laila,

I recommend that you move it directly into a small pot just big enough to accommodate the roots. Use a peat-based, soilless potting mix.
by Karamy on April 06, 2006 04:48 AM
That Wal-mart $1 potting soil is terrible stuff, if indeed you mean the kind I'm thinking of (in the blue bag). I used it when I re-potted last year, and all of my re-potted plants went downhill, only to perk right up when I changed the soil. If you decide to put your spath in soil again, use one of the name-brand potting mixes. One that's less expensive that I've had good results with is Expert Gardener Perfect Mix (yellow bag, sold at Wal-mart).

Karamy
by Amber J on April 06, 2006 06:07 AM
Hi Laila,

Soil will eventually lose nutrients - especially if your water is hard. I love this stuff called Super Thrive, I've literally brought plants back from the dead with it. My Peace Lily is also having a hard time, I have just repotted it, used ST (it really helps with the shock of transplantation), and cut back all the dead and problem leaves. I'll let you know how it goes!
by Will Creed on April 06, 2006 08:07 AM
I am going to disagree respectfully with the advice offered above about Super thrive. This product has been around for years relying on a massive marketing campaign that includes colorful artwork and outrageous claims, none of which have ever been verified by independent researchers. The reason they cannot be verified is that the manufacturer of this miracle product refuses to divulge what ingredients are in it.

I would be very reluctant to put unidentified stuff in any of my plants, although some have speculated that Super thrive is nothing more than water. The nutrients that plants require are all well-known and regular plant foods have them in various formulations that are listed on the label.

I know that many people swear by this stuff, but other than anecdotal reports there is nothing that backs up their claims. If you do use it, it probably harm only your pocketbook.

Caveat emptor!
by comfrey on April 06, 2006 10:25 AM
quote:
Originally posted by Will Creed:
I am going to disagree respectfully with the advice offered above about Super thrive. This product has been around for years relying on a massive marketing campaign that includes colorful artwork and outrageous claims, none of which have ever been verified by independent researchers. The reason they cannot be verified is that the manufacturer of this miracle product refuses to divulge what ingredients are in it.

I would be very reluctant to put unidentified stuff in any of my plants,

I am so happy to hear this Will...I have avoided even trying that stuff, as I am not going to put anything in my plants that I don't know what it is! Thank You [thumb]

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by Amber J on April 06, 2006 12:00 PM
I have done some "independent research" then, I suppose, because I love the stuff, and I swear by it. So if anyone's curioius for an opinion about it, I have used it and I have seen what it does - it really works for me and I have used it for years!
by JV on April 06, 2006 03:39 PM
Thanks Will I was also looking at some but no body could tell me if it would go with a strict organic program. Once again you saved me money. [thumb]
Jimmy

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Keep it organic
GOD BLESS THE U.S.A.
Pray for our Troops!

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by Will Creed on April 07, 2006 06:16 AM
Amber,

Perhaps it is your good care - providing proper light, watering, etc. - that has led to the success you have had with your plants. [Smile]
by Amber J on April 08, 2006 05:47 PM
I dunno - I normally take very good care of my plants, but I find that if I transplant and don't use Superthrive (which I understand has a ton of B vitamin), they seem to respond poorly.

And also if my plants start to get sick or I'm not familiar with it and not taking care of it right I always use it and the plants seem to ... well, thrive! haha

Yeah I know it sounds like I own stock in the company or something, but really my mom used the stuff for years, and I started using it after I got into gardening and I really love it.

I don't know why anyone's not hearing me though!! [tears]
by Handbright on April 08, 2006 09:33 PM
Hi! The peace lily (or spathiphyllum) grows in the garden here so I thought what i know about them might help a little.
I have them in deep shade in my back yard. The soil is always wet, for they hate being dry at all and will wilt at the slightest provocation.
If you add some perlite to the water that they are in now, it might help your plants to grow sturdier roots, and then later you can put them in a VERY loose sandy loamy perlity soil, and keep it wet.
There may be some wilting even then, if they dont perk up in a couple of days, then I guess its right back into the water.
If they get any direct sun at all they will burn. Our humidity is very high here, so misting them probably wouldnt hurt either.
and when you do try to pot them up, try the good old standby of putting them on a tray of pebbles to keep the micro climate around the plants as wet as possible...
Hope that helped!
[Smile]
HB

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