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Pachira (Money Tree) In Trouble

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by msgvb on May 20, 2006 04:26 AM
I bought one of those Bonsai arrangments from Home Depot. It had 4 separate pachira trees in it, and I separated them and repotted them individually.

Three of the four are doing very well, but one of them didn't have much of a root system and isn't doing as well as the others, in fact, not well at all, I'm afraid.

I really want to save this one, as it is my favorite of the four.

One by one the leaves started yellowing, and a slight tug would remove them. It is not using up water at the same rate as the others. For now, I have moved it to a somewhat warmer, dimmer position, am not watering it anymore, and have cut off the sections that were yellowing, leaving the petiole.

I am really only in my second year of playing with plants, so I'm not really sure what I should be doing at this point.

I've considered both putting it in a plastic bag to increase the humidity, and also pulling it from the pot and trying to root it in water. For now, I just have it in a very free draining soil mix, out of the light, and misting the foliage every other day.

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by msgvb on May 22, 2006 03:07 AM
no ideas?
it seems to have stopped yellowing at this point, but some of the leaves are still pretty limp.

how long does rooting take in these plants?

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by joclyn on May 22, 2006 07:56 AM
i don't know how long it takes for the roots to grow.

maybe try a light (1/2 strength) treatment of root stimulant. it comes as concentrate - 3 capfuls to a gallon of water is the usual - i'd half it tho since you're dealing with a potted plant and not something in a garden. just treat it once and see if that helps. maybe do a second treatment in a month if you think it could use it.

these were bonsai,right? well, with bonsai, the point is to dwarf the growth of the plant - which is mainly done by trimming the roots, as well as keeping the plant in a small container (again, to restrict root growth). that particular plant might have been cut back too much.

home depot does offer a 1 year guarantee - you might have voided it by seperating the plants tho.
by msgvb on May 23, 2006 02:01 PM
hey Joclyn,
yeah, I thought about some kinda root stimulant, but I've never used any and not really sure what I would be looking for.

they were sold as bonsai, but they're not really bonsai. three of the four trees' roots were still container shaped and did not appear to have been trimmed at all. this one particular one though, almost complete absence of a root system.

heheh, I'm sure I couldn't return it since I've taken them apart, so to speak [Smile]

so about this root stimulant -- have any brand names I can look for?

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by gardeningmomma on May 23, 2006 02:08 PM
Could you put the piece in water and see if it roots again? That's what I've donw when my prized plants lose a leaf or branch. Just a thought [thinker]
by msgvb on May 24, 2006 07:02 AM
well, I would certainly try that, but I need to develop a better root system on old growth, not on vigorous new shoots.
you can see from this photo that it is more like a tree already than a typical plant.

here is a photo before it was looking sickly

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by msgvb on May 24, 2006 07:20 AM
here it is now, about 3-4 weeks later. I have cut some of the leaves off of it. you can see the new growth, but it hasn't really changed in a couple of weeks.

don't mind the color tone; it's still pretty green. the photo was just taken in different lighting.

it was mostly that smaller left branch that the growth was dying on. the larger branch seems okay for now.

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by joclyn on May 24, 2006 09:23 AM
it doesn't really look all that bad! and you've got some new growth!!

what's that nick in the bark on the lower left part of the trunk? that bare area should probably be covered up or, at the least, treated with something to seal it. plain old parafin would work in a pinch.

what kind of lighting are you giving it?

the root stimulant that i got was purchased at lowe's. it's called green light - it was the only brand they had so i don't know if there are other companies make it.

if there are barely any roots, then you should definitely treat it with the stimulant.

it's no wonder the leaves were falling off - it needs nutrients and the only way it can get them is through the roots. get the roots going and the plant will really start to thrive!
by gardeningmomma on May 24, 2006 10:14 AM
Oh I was thinking it was 4 seperate plants twisted together. Sorry
by msgvb on May 24, 2006 10:39 AM
quote:
Originally posted by joclyn:
it doesn't really look all that bad! and you've got some new growth!!
well, that new growth I think was there from a few weeks ago. I can't be sure, though.

quote:
what's that nick in the bark on the lower left part of the trunk? that bare area should probably be covered up or, at the least, treated with something to seal it. plain old parafin would work in a pinch.
that was a wiring scratch; the tree is held in the loose potting mix with aluminum wire. it was too high up the trunk and skinned it slightly when I started to tighten it. I have pruning paste. I thought it would just heal on its own.

quote:
what kind of lighting are you giving it?
well right now I've kinda got it out of the light. it's getting low to medium indirect, I would say. it was getting medium before, but the leaves were yellowing, so I though it best to keep it out of bright light for a while until the roots can reestablish themselves. it is not usually in light as bright as that shown in the 2nd photo.

quote:
the root stimulant that i got was purchased at lowe's. it's called green light - it was the only brand they had so i don't know if there are other companies make it.

if there are barely any roots, then you should definitely treat it with the stimulant.

it's no wonder the leaves were falling off - it needs nutrients and the only way it can get them is through the roots. get the roots going and the plant will really start to thrive!

I'll check it out. I am afraid to give it anything though.

that is what I want to do though, get more roots going and fast.
so this stuff really works? how fast?
does it work any differently than mixing up rooting hormone in water?

I hope I can get it going again before it dies. hopefully taking off most of the growth will help it, though typically I take off new growth in a situation like this and leave the older established growth.

unfortunately, I think it was too late, as the older growth was dying off.

wonder if I should still clip the tiny new stuff so it can use the energy on root development.

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by msgvb on May 24, 2006 10:45 AM
quote:
Originally posted by gardeningmomma:
Oh I was thinking it was 4 seperate plants twisted together. Sorry
no problem, thanks for checking out the post

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by joclyn on May 24, 2006 03:27 PM
the root stimulant is the same thing as the root hormone - just in a much different concentration.

it's easier to just get the stimulant (already made up) since it still needs to be watered down anyway.

i think you should give it a go with the stim...certainly couldn't hurt - just follow the directions on the package. you can use the rest of the batch for stuff out in your garden.

the package directions say to treat again in two weeks...with this being in a potted situation (the directions are related to outdoors plants) i'd say that one treatment should be more than enough to boost it enough to get it back on track.

i'd keep it in the more moderate light situation until it's more healthy...and don't get rid of any of the new growth - it still needs the leaves for photosynthesis!!

when it is in better shape, gradually introduce it to the brighter light source. i've found conflicting info on just how much light it needs to do well...

when i got mine, i was told indirect light (as in low light). then, later, someone else said they should be in bright light.

where do you have the others? you did say they're doing okay, right?

good luck and keep us updated on what happens!
by msgvb on May 24, 2006 04:02 PM
thanks Joclyn.
right now I've got it sitting on top of the fridge, which is under a skylight that only gets bright for a few hours a day. I have it on top of the fridge for the warmth.

maybe I'll put it back where the others are.

Home Depot didn't have the stuff you're talking about so I'll try Lowe's tomorrow.
thanks for the info, and I'll be back in a couple of weeks.

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by joclyn on May 24, 2006 05:00 PM
yes, they do need some warmth - i had mine on top of the fridge too...it didn't do well there - i was never sure if it was the incorrect spot (light-wise), too much heat or the bugs it was infested with (it didn't live too long). probably a combo of all.

if the others are doing well where they are, then put this one there too.

good luck!!
by msgvb on May 26, 2006 02:06 AM
okay, got the Green Light and have just applied the recommended dose. it was $5 at Lowe's. at first I didn't see this smaller quantity, and the next one up was the gallon size that makes 70 gallons of the stuff! it was $11. if this works out, I'm thinking I might use it on all my trees when I repot, though I've always heard it's bad to fertilize when the plant or tree is in distress.

back to the spot with the others, and we'll see what happens now.

I don't think they are getting enough light, though. one of the others has yellowing leaves now as well.

I hope this works.

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by msgvb on June 01, 2006 06:05 AM
you know what, as I was mixing the solution and just after applying, I realized that I was fertilizing a plant in distress, which is usually not recommended. this root stimulator sounds like what I need, but really, it's just a fertilizer. I'll use it once the plant stabilizes, but I think it'll just mess it up to use it right now.

instead, I soaked it a few times and let the water run through the soil to try to remove the solution.

about four days ago, I put it outside in sort of a shaded morning sun area. doesn't seem to be doing any worse, so hopefully it will stabilize. once it starts to look healthy again, I'll use this root stim product to try to get a good root base going again without promoting too much green growth.

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by msgvb on June 20, 2006 12:02 PM
well, I just wanted to report back that the little fella didnt make it. the situation just got worse with time.

services will be held Wednesday morning at 9am for those who would like to attend.

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by afgreyparrot on June 21, 2006 05:12 AM
quote:
services will be held Wednesday morning at 9am for those who would like to attend.

Ahhh...that sounds so sad! [Eek!]

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by joclyn on June 21, 2006 11:03 AM
my condolences.

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