ultra_violetMay 3, 2013

I can't stop adopting new plants and have no more rooms in my house for isolation. Any other ways to keep a plant isolated for 6-8 weeks? A dome will probably be too humid and airless for a mature plant for that long. Do you think stretching a piece of sheer curtain across the top of a glass aquarium be ok? Will any pests be able to escape? Thanks in advance.

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irina_co(z5 CO)

UV -

thrips - fly very well- and they carry virus. Unless you start spraying all your new acquisitions with some potent chemical - you will have the whole house infested with this hard to get rid of pest. The mealy bugs walk from pot to pot, mites - you touch the leaf - and you touch another one on the other side of the room - and relocate them. Fungus gnats - they are more of a nuisance - but they also fly well - and the larvae lives in a soil - so if you bring the plant from HD - you can guarantee you will bring them.

Probably the safest way to increase a collection - if you start new plants from cuttings. You can dip them in a Clorox or alcohol solution before planting - and it pretty much does the pests in.

Probably you are going in the direction of a serious hoarding case - I am there - so I know how it feels. What saves me- we have Show and sale twice a year - so I will live myself a cutting - and sell the large plant. Otherwise I would long as sleeping in the garage because every square inch would be taken.

good Luck


    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 5:12PM
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perle_de_or(Zone 7)

A cheap way of instant isolation is to get the 2 gallon Hefty zip lock bags, put a plastic tray or something in the bottom to give it a base to sit on and you can put a few small plants inside or one large one. I have used this several times because I have the same problem you do.

Irina, that is a fantastic tip on reducing the collection. I am going to do that with a few I can't bring myself to get rid of. I can just keep a leaf from them, thanks sooooo much.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 8:36PM
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I think AV hoarding would make a great topic for reality TV!

@Irina: Can I dip an entire plant in Clorox or alcohol solution? And rinse the roots?

@Perle_de_Or: How long do you keep mature plants in the bags? Does it get too airless for them?


    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 11:22AM
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perle_de_or(Zone 7)

I periodically open the bag if it gets to looking too moist inside. I keep a close eye on them. I have been keeping them in the bags for a month or so, although I know a lot of people recommend longer isolation, but like you, I don't have a lot of room. If I feel confident about the plant I take it out. I keep my plants from touching each other as much as possible on the shelves too. I have about 100 plants and I am in the process of giving some of them away, especially the ones that look alike.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 4:44PM
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irina_co(z5 CO)

UV -
you can spray your plant with 1:4 rubbing alcohol solution (do not do it to Streptocarpus) - but there is no guarantee. Rinsing roots...too much work.

I try not to buy full grown plants - they go into shock from changing environment and they are already pass their prime. So - I will get a starter plant or a leaf. If it is a starter plant - I will get it out of its pot - and shake as much old soil as possible. I will look at the roots - if there are soil mealies - I will cut the roots off and reroot the crown. It happens very rarely - but I once bought plants on ebay - and one had mealies. I contacted the seller - and he confirmed that he checked his plants and found one tray with pests. S. Happens. I rerooted new plants and he treated his, no hard feelings. Normally I just repot the new acquisition into my soil and add Marathon to it to prevent mealy bugs and fungus gnats. I will definitely remove all the flowers and buds before even taking the new plant in a house. Thrips are hard to get rid of. Marathon is a systemic, it will kill thrips in a green tissue - but not in the flowers.

I will keep the tray covered - or better stick them in a transparent rubbermaid container with a lid and keep them there for some time = a month probably. . And afterwards I will keep them on a separate tray for 6 months till next repotting. If nothing shows up - I can mix them with the rest of the collection.

If the plant is stunted - after 2 months in my care - I will chuck it. There are plenty of virus infected plants nowdays.


    Bookmark   May 6, 2013 at 1:50PM
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