Cyclaman Mite on AV plants question

vickster257(Z7aNJ)January 25, 2008

Hi everyone,

How can I detect if the leaves on a few of my plants have cyclaman mite? Symptoms I notice are some of the leaves are gradually turning grayish and are drying out rapidly from the edges down to the petiole. Also, a few I think are getting root rot. Are there any other symptoms which I should recognize if in fact it is cyclaman mite? Destroy the plant or is there a formula to correct it?

Thanks, Vicki

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robitaillenancy1(zone 5)

Mite symptoms are CENTERS turning yellowish or "off color" then gray. Center is tight. Petioles are thicker. Plant is hairier. Leaves are brittle and turn down if broad mite has attacked, turn up if cyclamen mite has attacked.

You have described 1. a natural occurance of older leaves drying and dying, or 2. root rot.

Check your roots. Healthy roots are white. Dead or dying roots (root rot) is brown.

Loosen most of the soil around the roots, pull or cut off about 1/3 of the rootball. Put plant into pot and add fresh soil. Watch watering which is the cause of root rot.


    Bookmark   January 25, 2008 at 9:10AM
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Thanks, Nancy, for your feedback on cyclamin mites symptoms; I don't see any evidence of a hard center, etc. which you described on my violets, yet, many leaves are getting gray and the stems are mushy--that could be overwatering and these plants are in the two piece ceramic pots. I lifted a few of them out of the water to dry out somewhat and check them again. I suppose as they become older, the leaves will dry and drop off. Most of the plants look good now but a few need constant checking.

Which type of pot would you recommend for the African Violets and which do you have greater success with?


    Bookmark   January 26, 2008 at 11:27AM
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My 2 cents worth on pots....plastic is cheapest, comes in many sizes, and is one of the few pots that comes in a squatty shape called an azalea pot. These pots work very well with AVs because of the shallow root system, and they do like to be a little rootbound.

Very few experienced growers use the two part ceramic pots. You can't leach them, the porosity will vary from pot to pot, and salts can build up on the top of the soil.


    Bookmark   January 26, 2008 at 9:27PM
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Thanks Barbara for your opinion on the use of ceramic pots although I have been quite successful so far with their use. Also, I do use the azalea pots for my smaller plants and they work well.

I also am able to leach the soil in between fertilizing by watering with warm tap water every 6 weeks or so.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2008 at 11:50AM
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robitaillenancy1(zone 5)

I prefer the ordinary plastic pots.

You may keep your plant in the self watering container if you lighten the soil. Add much more perlite and see if it takes on less water.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2008 at 3:24PM
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I usually add more perlite to the soil when replanting in a self watering container and it works out well. I am still having more gray leaves on a few plants so am watching a few plants diligently now. I certainly would not want to lose any of them. Vicki

    Bookmark   January 31, 2008 at 12:20PM
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