Dreceana "janet craig", Ficus elastica ( common rubber tree)

Discussion in 'Indoor and Greenhouse Plants' started by Canadianplant, Nov 10, 2009.

  1. Canadianplant

    Canadianplant Active Member

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    Thunder Bay
    Ive had 2 janet craig dreceanas for about 15 years. As far as I know they dont really need a large or deep pot ( they have a root ball instead of a tap root). Recently, the new growth seems stunted, and slightly discoloured.

    Also, my rubber trees ( all of them, seemed to have stopped growing, and the new leaves, are very stunted and are wavy. I just repoted them a year ago, and im pretty sure they dont need new pots ( they tend to like being pot bound), but the last time i seen this happen my 25 year old plant rotted from the canes up and died ( i think it got root rot.) The only thing i can think of is that im underwatering.

    Ill post some pics when i get a chance today.....

  2. joclyn

    joclyn Rising Contributor

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    philly, pa, usa 6b
    yes, please post pics!!!

    generally, even if a plant likes root-bound conditions, there does come a point where the roots are so bound that they are unable to take up the water and then you end up with underwatered plants. sometimes even severely underwatered if you stop adding water once you see it working its way out the drain holes (which usually indicates the soil is thoroughly moistened, so, you can stop adding more).

    underwatering can cause leaf discoloration as well as malformation.

    spider mites may also be a cause of leaf malformation - look for fine webbing near the tops of the plants (around new growth). if you see tiny strings, even just one or two, you've got mites. spritzing with water daily will keep them away...you can also add in a drop or two of dish soap as that will help to kill the mites. can also use a commercial treatment like safer's insectidical soap spray.

    back to the pots. when was the last time you repotted? if more than 3 years, did you at least refresh the soil in the container, even if you didn't change to a new one?

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