Can I save these battered, dried out, over watered Monsteras?

Discussion in 'Araceae' started by Oakland Monstera Killer, Jan 24, 2015.

  1. Oakland Monstera Killer

    Oakland Monstera Killer New Member

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    I was given a very large Monstera Deliciosa sprawling out of a pot, and maybe have totally killed it all or maybe can save some of it?

    The original had about 5 large petioles with 1-3 leaves each, coming out of tangled stems winding in and out of the soil bed. Here and there there's buds, and lots of dry root shoots.

    I figured I should split them into different pots, and it all went down hill from there.

    On a Thursday I put the big original pot into the bathtub, and started wiggling my fingers in to grab the root bulb and bring it up out of the soil.

    I found that the stem tangle was really 3 separate pieces, and began pulling off dirt clods and figuring out how to untangle the roots.

    Around then my wife came home freezing cold and wanted a bath immediately so I started hurrying to clean up and promptly knocked a jar of tea onto the floor, adding wet glass shards to all the dirt and dried plant bits.

    Marital melodrama ensued, which resulted in the hapless Monstera(s) spending the night outside in the trash bin.

    Friday morning I brought them back inside, with some torn leaves and broken petioles, and should have immediately asked for advice... but it was been a frantic week so I just tried what I could in the time that I had, only later realizing how big a difference there is between hardy spider plants and elegant Monsteras, who responded very poorly as the days went on...

    Saturday and Sunday they sat indoors with the root bulb sitting in a big huge bin with a bucket of dirt below it and a bucket of dirt poured onto it, and the petioles and leaves draped over some chairs.

    Monday and Tuesday I poured a half bucket of water onto the bulb a little after lunch time. Tuesday night they went outdoors and had cold night and brisk day, in direct sun for the morning, still in the big bin, until Wednesday evening when I drained the water out, laid the petioles and leaves out flat on a patio bench, and covered them with fleece through the next very cold night.

    Thursday I separated the root bulb, planted the three biggest chunks with the longest petioles in two pots, and watered them thoroughly. I put the other shorter stem sections into vases and jars of water.

    They've been indoors since, with big leaves going from wilted to yellow to dry to dead. The stems in water seem mostly the same -- the large ones are laid out on the towel, and the smaller shown in their jars.

    Is there anything I can do or have I slaughtered them all?
     

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    Last edited: Jan 26, 2015
  2. T311

    T311 Member

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    how did it turn out?
     
  3. thanrose

    thanrose Active Member

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    The initial post was over a year ago. Since this is more of a botany site than a home grower enthusiast site, it wouldn't have garnered a lot of attention.

    That said, what those pics reveal are stems that would root and shoot if treated properly. The reference to petioles appears to be incorrect, or I'm confused. Each large leaf with holes and lobes and all would have one petiole, the leaf stem, attaching at a node to the plant stem. So with five leaves you would have five petioles. In this plant, Monstera deliciosa?, no petiole would mean no leaf. Not true for all plants.

    The alternating periods of cold, warmth, exposure, and drowning would not be good for this tropical vine. Marital strife never seemed to affect mine, nor did broken glass. These also would not be true for all plants. I imagine a few actually like drowning in broken glass. But the vine itself is fairly resilient and can be used to produce new plants. If the vine is kinda silvery scaley with age, or is quite wrinkled with dehydration, I'd start planning memorial services.

    One would section the vine stem with a couple of nodes. You could place the lowest node on each cutting in water, but I think it would be better to lay the piece flat on potting soil, with a layer of mulch or soil over it. Rooting in water is good for humans to watch, not so good for most plants. Different type of root than what they need in soil. It's like giving a person a unicycle or a car to commute. One is not much more than fun, although both will work to a degree

    For the original poster, the leaves are quite curled and limp. While they produce food for the entire plant and the rooting process when healthy, these might be damaged enough that they are taxing the resources of the cutting. I'd probably cut each leaf and petiole off, or maybe just cut the leaf off to a third of its size.

    Anyhow, if I saw these out at the curb last year, I'd have a lush plant by now.
     
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  4. T311

    T311 Member

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    LOL if it can handle Marital strife it probably can handle a few extremes. I have seen a few people "lay the piece flat on potting soil, with a layer of mulch or soil over it." What is this called and why does it work so well? My imagination says more surface area is this the only reason?
     
  5. thanrose

    thanrose Active Member

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    More surface area would apply to some plants propagated like this, for instance, pegging a flexible tomato stem or a marigold down to the soil and covering with soil will get you more roots. There are multiple places along a section of stem that would root. You might even do a cutting of them that way. But this sort of vining plant will only root at the nodes. Not from the leaf, not from the petiole, but only very near to where the petiole meets the plant stem. Many vining plants root very well this way. Not all of them of course, but some. You would cover a couple of nodes just to provide the slip with a better chance of rooting at a choice of two nodes and possibly decreasing the chance of the slip rotting before it roots. I don't know the technical name for this but think of it as a form of layering.
     

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