Desert Rose problem

Discussion in 'Rosa (roses)' started by Sue Melter, Jul 24, 2009.

  1. Sue Melter

    Sue Melter Member

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    Hi,

    I received a desert rose as a gift in June and it was doing fine until I took a two week trip during which time, it didn't get watered. However, other than for dry leaves, it seemed fine. Now, however it has developed what looks like white cotton on the end of its limbs. When I touch them, they are sticky.............I had the plant on my windowsill in the kitchen facing east, but since it developed this white fuzzy stuff, I have put it outside on the deck where it does get sun most of the day. Is this a disease? What can I do about it? The plant seems healthy otherwise.

    Thanks for any help
     
  2. togata57

    togata57 Contributor 10 Years

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    Mealybugs, maybe. Could you give us a photo?
    Welcome to the Forum, Sue!
     
  3. joclyn

    joclyn Rising Contributor

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    sounds like mealy bugs. easy enough to deal with: dip a q-tip in rubbing alcohol and then touch the bugs with it - should kill them almost instantly. then you'll need to dip a fresh swab and rub up/down the stems and leaves (to kill any eggs). repeat treatment in about 10 days.

    they're succulents, so, a missed watering really shouldn't have been too much of a big deal. just get back on the usual schedule and it'll recover and will put out new leaves to replace any that were lost. i'd also put it back in it's usual spot, too. being outside, it'll actually be more likely to get more bugs and moving it when it's already in a partly stressed state will only aggravate it more.

    please post some pics of it and the bugs, if you can.
     
  4. Sue Melter

    Sue Melter Member

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    Thanks for replying. Another friend suggested that I get some liquid Seven and spray it........I tried that and the sticky, white stuff seems to be gone, but the plant, altough firm, seems to be trying to recover. Hasn't put out any new leaves or anything, but I will try your suggestion and put it back in the house. I don't really like using chemicals, but did anyway.........if it happens again, I will take your suggestion. Tried to take pics, but they were too fuzzy........thanks again.
     
  5. joclyn

    joclyn Rising Contributor

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    they have a caudex that stores water, so, the missed watering while you were away isn't all that big a deal. they're extremely hardy and are very drought tolerant!

    the infestation is/was much more of an issue.

    seven was a severe treatment - albeit very effective! i'd just get it back on it's usual watering schedule and it should recuperate quite well.

    not sure what your zone is/how cold it gets and if you'll need to bring it inside for winter. if it gets colder than 45, bring it inside during the fall when temps start getting to be around 60-65.

    water just enough over winter to keep it going - once a month should be enough. also, keep it in a VERY sunny spot and away from drafts.

    they do have a dormant period (winter time), so, they can drop some, if not all, the leaves at some point. and, during dormancy, you should hold back watering - shouldn't need anything more than once a month or so, i think, during that time period.
     
  6. Sue Melter

    Sue Melter Member

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    Thanks for your reply...........yes, I realize that Seven was an extreme measure. My plant has now dropped all of its leaves, but otherwise seems to be healthy. I am in zone 7, so will take the plant in for the winter. Hopefully, it will come back......

    Again, thanks for the info.
     
  7. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Note that the plant being discussed is Adenium obesum and not a rose as in Rosa.
     
  8. joclyn

    joclyn Rising Contributor

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    yup, adenium obesum is the proper botanical name! thanks, ron!

    sue, it should be just fine even with the leaf drop. just be sure to water as needed and nothing more than that.

    when you got it, did you repot it? what kind of soil is it in? and does the container have drainage holes?
     
  9. Sue Melter

    Sue Melter Member

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    Hey,

    No, I did not repot it. It's in a nice size pot with drainage holes in the bottom, and until this white gunk showed up, it was doing just great on my window sill. Maybe I will repot it after this episode. It's such an unusual looking plant, and was a gift from my husband. Anyway, thanks for response. I'll try repotting with some good soil, and keep my fingers crossed that it survives my ministrations.

    Thanks again,

    Sue
     
  10. joclyn

    joclyn Rising Contributor

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    if it's in peat (which it most probably is), then i'd say to repot it - in cactus mix which is peat, bark bits and perlite and then i'd add in some additional perlite or aquarium soil (ceramic pellets) for additional drainage.

    allow it to sit in the new, dry, soil for at least a week before watering it - that will allow the roots to recuperate a bit from being moved/fiddled with during the repotting.
     
  11. Sue Melter

    Sue Melter Member

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    Wow........thanks. I'll do that, and see what transpires. It's starting to look a little peaked..............
     

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