My cast iron plants are rusting

hawk(7-AL)February 22, 2006

I planted 5 large cast iron plants around an oak tree several years ago. Ive noticed that the larger leaves have turned yellow in color and have brown edges. There are plenty of smaller healty looking leaves in each plant. Is it necessary to prune the discolored leaves from these plants on a regular basis. Also, can these be dug up and separated similar to a hosta? If so, what is the best time of the year to do that?

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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Tattered and yellowing/browning leaves are normal for this plant, especially when spring is just around the corner. As a rule for ALL plants, diseased or dieing parts should be removed whenever you notice them. It takes energy from the plant to support such leaves. If the entire plant seems the worse for wear, it can be cut all the way to the ground in the early spring.

Yes, these plants can and should be divided occasionally. You can do so by digging the entire thing up or by simply severing any part of the crown as long as there is an active growing point. I would say that this should be done in the spring, too, though perhaps someone else can comment on that.

It's always helpful to know from what general part of the country a poster comes from. Climate makes a huge difference.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2006 at 11:07AM
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hawk(7-AL)

Thanks Rhizo each of the plants have healthy new growth so I'll try prunning the tattered discolored leaves. It's great for us novices to have a resource like this.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2006 at 9:35AM
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loveofmylife680(z7)

Yes it is nice to have help like this, I got a little clump from a friend last year, how long does it take for it to start producing more plants?
Jill

    Bookmark   March 2, 2006 at 11:01AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

These plants spread steadily but not rampantly. You may not want to consider dividing your plant for three or four years, or more! The appearance of a nice fat clump of Aspidistra is more attractive than the new divisions.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2006 at 3:07PM
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