Help saving large Jade plant

BigZodNovember 29, 2013

Hi everyone, I recently got a very large jade plant off of Craigslist that has a couple of problems, but I would like to try to save it. This thing is huge, 3+ feet tall and wide and is currently flowering, so I really want to save it.

It had a large limb broken off and at the point of the break was brown and moldy. I removed the brown off of the limb and am drying the cutting(s) which I made from that. I also cut back the brown where that limb joined part of the trunk, but that has become brown and started to develop mold as well. The large stem above the mold is actually healthy looking and flowering, but I don't want to let this go too long as it may hurt the plant.

I *think* from the reading I've done that I need to cut off the branch and cut back the brown until all I see is white. My fear is that the brown area may go down to the root, but I have to take it out of the pot before I know that. The other large stems look/feel firm and healthy.

I've attached a few pictures. I would really like to save this huge jade, but if that means splitting it into a few smaller jades that will be healthy, then that's what I have to do. Feedback is hugely appreciated as I'm brand new to jades.

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Here is a pic of the jade overall, the stem in question is the large central one shooting up the middle. you can see the white of the mold at the bottom in the middle near the roots.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2013 at 6:31PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)


Pls. provide a closer shot so we can see what you're referring to &/or whether it could be mealy bugs.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2013 at 8:49PM
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I would use a sterile blade and shave it off...not too deep and put cinnamon or some other anti-mold, fungus, etc.

Of course, I'm not an expert here but that's my 2 cents worth.

That does look like mold and maybe what you used before wasn't sterile and it spread.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2013 at 10:46PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Sorry, when I looked earlier, I didn't see the first pic.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2013 at 2:01AM
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I think you really need to check to see if the center stem is rotted at the base before doing anything else.


    Bookmark   November 30, 2013 at 8:09AM
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Thank you all for the replies, they are much appreciated.

The center stem is a little soft and is darker/brown looking under the spot where the mold developed, so I'm afraid that there is rot there. If you look at the first picture, you can see that where the bark is split on the other stems, it's white, but on the one with the mold the split is brown.

If this is the case, do I need to cut off the whole stem then start trying to cut any brown on the base/roots? Is there any way that this will fix itself with proper care once I get rid of the mold?

    Bookmark   November 30, 2013 at 9:43AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Great big Jade.

Yes, remove the entire stem that has rot at its base, and cut down to clean healthy green tissue. Use a sterile blade, and dust the fresh cut with cinnamon to help prevent the spread of rot. You can always re-root the top of that stem, provided that you take a cutting from the upper rot-free tissue.

Then you need to address how the rot started in the first place - which most likely traces back to a water-retentive soil. So, a new porous mix is what comes next.

Is that where it always sits, or just for the picture? It'll need as much light, right against a window, as possible.


    Bookmark   November 30, 2013 at 1:22PM
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Here's a pic of the trimmed branch, I'm still hoping to save it before performing the drastic cut. The part underneath feels much harder over the last couple of days, so I'm not *as* convinced it's rotting away.

I cleaned up the cut a little bit and dusted the area with cinnamon. From what you can see of the area, do you think the branch can be saved or is the little bit of brown present at the cut a bad indication?

    Bookmark   December 1, 2013 at 3:44PM
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BTW, greenman, I've had this jade less than a week, a person on craigslist was getting rid of it and I wanted to try to save it.

I don't think the soil is ideal given what I've read and I've placed the jade in a south-facing window. I will try to re-plant once I see what the deal is with the recovery of the branch (whether I have to do major surgery, etc.

Thanks all!

    Bookmark   December 1, 2013 at 3:50PM
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