Thanksgiving Cactus - needs help :(

Lamora(4)December 10, 2012

Hi Everyone. I hope someone can come up with some ideas for me.
The TC I aquired a bit over a month ago, has 2 plants in it, both are cuttings with a large amount of stem. One stem is larger than the other one and has NO ROOTS! It is like a stick with segments. I do not know how long this woman had this TC, but it is looking real sad, very soft and droopy and I just don't know what to do for it. It was like this when I got it, so I repotted it, after it gave me just ONE flower, gave it new soil, (that is when I seen the bare stick) and it has been getting worse.

The other one seems to be doing ok, still no new growth or flowers, but it seems to be healthier than the other one.

My DH wants to take it out (the one with no roots) and stick it in a jar of water, see if it will root some. At this point I am ready to try it, and at this point, I don't think it could hurt it.

Here is what it looks like now.. very sad looking

This is the larger side, the other side looks somewhat better..
any ideas on what I can do to help it? Please??

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I found a pic of the bare stem-- if it helps.. they are both together in this photo, but you can see the bare one.

Thanks for any advice

    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 4:59PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi Lamora,

I'm almost afraid to comment here, not sure what I'm getting into, but I don't think that plant is half as bad as you think it is. I guess I don't know what you're expecting.

Don't know why you repotted these together, did you leave that mix on there? That pot looks like a self-watering plant, I hope it's not as that's not a good idea for these plants.

Personally, I would have potted them up separately, & removed ALL of that nasty looking mix. Wait a few days & watered & then left the plant alone to recover.

Again, I'd suggest you pls. leave the plants alone & let them try & recover. Fussing w/ them, will NOT help this situation, I assure you.

In my opinion, that pot is too deep for these plants.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 6:40PM
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The hanging pot does prevent good draining IMO by design it's a complete disaster lacking in bottom hole size for draining to it's snap on bottom over flow catch. Inside there where some plastic disk with some more holes for they are used to hold the soil and plant away water in the lower part of pot which is is used as a water retaining reservoir.

Depth of pot isn't the worst of your TC problem right now it's just your TC wont need that depth for a while A long whilesuggest you just toss that pot in a recycle bin it's all wrong for any plant

The slightly rotted rooted piece in your hand:

Agree you shouldn't need to fuss to much over it. If it's gone it's gone but to help it I would water rinse the root remainders clean of any soil on them now and let set in a covered plastic catch dish one upside down on the other think of this as a very small hot house for a single TC

Also thinks you may want to use two of the the small catch dish temporary hot houses one for each type of TC you mentioned you have.

Soil: not that your nearly exhausted with holiday shopping there are one or two more stores you might want to stop in and pick up an item or two Your looking for items that will provide better draining with moisture retaining for the more natural epic jungle cacti in a pot setting

3 parts meduim / small sized Orchid bark or reti bark found at petco
1 part more or less part perlite rinsed and sifted found at HD or Lowes
1 part filler, items here can be pumice or turface as an example. If hard to find for you then NAPA Oil Dry

When collected mix items soak and rinse again then allow to damp dry on a towel or paper over night before re-potting a hopefully better looking section or rotting as seen pot my suggestion 4 inch Terra-cottar or plastic

You will loose ends off of the piece you hold keep us posted every couple weeks with progress or other wise

best of growing to you

    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 8:16PM
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It looks better in the picture, you can't really see how droppy and soft it is, this is the best I can do..

You both have very valid points. I too, was thinking about how large the pot is, but I seriously thought there would be more roots to it, never seen roots for a TC except on here, and those where huge! ;)

The bottom of pot comes off very easily, it isn't on when I water, I make sure it is not draining when I put it back on. So it isn't holding any extra water to sit in. And I top water. But I will put them both in a smaller seperate pot.

Then just leave them alone-- I know they should be left alone, but I want to make sure they are ok first, know what I mean?

Tempture: cool to warm. It is hard to keep constant here. Our room has no vent to it from the house, so we have a small heater. It gets hot real fast in here, so we don't use it a lot, mostly at night. Sweater temp for the most part. Can't tell you the temp.. gonna have to get a thermomater for this room...

Soil mix: 5-1-1 mix is all I have. Pine bark, perlite and peat moss. I have been using that for all my plants and they all seem to like it.

But do you think that the one stem will eventually develope roots? If I do as you suggest? I know it may take a while, and it will be a test of my patience, (running very low on that lately.)

Thank you so much for the advice. And I will keep you updated.
Marjie~~ still learning :)

    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 8:58PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Karen and Wes have pretty much covered it.

As for that stem...
*woody* cuttings - think of yours as simply a large unrooted cutting - are more difficult to root,
but certainly possible. It will take time, and care not to overwater.


    Bookmark   December 10, 2012 at 11:15PM
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