My dying gloxinia

chiangwengin(Macao)May 1, 2004

My gloxinia used to have big beautiful leaves and six or seven buds. This was a good sign for beautiful flowers later. But several days ago, I discovered that the leaves became soft, so I watered it a bit more. The next day, it was still the same, and so I gave it some westerly sunlight and cut the leaves leaving the buds behind. Yesterday, the main stem turned brown. Just now, I moved it to a pot of dryer soil. Would my gloxinia revive?

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Hi Karen,

There is one of two things going on here. Either your plant is going into dormancy, or your plant is dying. What I would do now is take the tuber out of the pot and see if it is firm or soft. If the tuber is soft then you have problems and the thing is probably going to die. If the tuber has some integrity to it cut all of the stems off of it, and clean the bulb of roots and dirt by hand. DonÂt wash it with water. Let it sit out for about a week and let it dry out and then plant it again. Some people say that one should leave the bulb dormant for months. I think that a week to a month is long enough. The main thing that one should do when a bulb is dormant is to check it occasionally to see if it is starting to soften up. If this happens then plant it immediately and start watering.

The tuber is somewhat heart shaped. The pointed end should be pointing down when you plant it. There only needs to be about a half inch of dirt above the tuber.

I hope this helps and I hope that your plant makes it.

Good lock,


PS - Even if the bulb is soft you could still try to clean it up and let it dry out for a week and then plant it. You have nothing to loose.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2004 at 5:45AM
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Hi Larry

Thanks for all the advice. Unfortunately, the main stem turned black entirely even after I moved the plant to dryer soil. It's really a pity for those 10 buds (I counted 10 later!). So I had to throw it away. Amazingly, I found a small gloxinia in the soil of the big pot of big leaf hydrangea that I had bought earlier. It has probably grown out from a dormant bulb because I saw another dead stem attached to the bulb. I have transplanted it and I hope that I'll have some luck.:>

    Bookmark   May 4, 2004 at 2:34AM
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Hey Karen,

It sounds like you may have a happy ending after all. Keep us posted.

one thing though. If your gloxinia is turning black, that is usually a sign of rotting caused by too dense a soil and/or too much watering. I would find a good african violet soil to plant the tubor in and be frugal with the watering. Especially, when the tubor is just planted. In that state, it will not be using a lot of water until you have real plants growing from the bulb.


    Bookmark   May 4, 2004 at 6:23AM
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Oh yeah, I've learnt my lesson.:> And one bud has come out from the "discovered" gloxinia!

    Bookmark   May 16, 2004 at 11:38PM
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