Cycas Revoluta leaves turning yellow

Matfx7July 4, 2011

I bought a massive Cycas Revoluta about 3 weeks ago and its trunk diameter is 8 inchs. I kept it in a massive pot with 4 draining holes at the base of the pot. I over-watered first time when I kept it in the pot to let the sand settle firmly in the pot. Later I came to know that they must not be over-watered. After a week the bottom-most ring of leaves turned yellow then on the following week heavy rains occured and another ring of leaves turned yellow from bottom second. Then I tied a platic cover around the trunk covering the sand and pot so that no water can get inside it. When I search on google some say NOT to cut yellow leaves until they turn brown while some say to cut all the leaves except the top most leaves to encourage new flush of leaves. I felt greedy of its beauty so I chopped the bottom-most leaves that turned completely yellow on the 3rd week.

I have a pot mixture of 10% perlite stones,20% normal home sand that I added to 70% black sand that came with the sales plastic packet in which the Cycas was kept and sold.

It will get 5 hours of sunlight if there is no trace of a cloud from 9am to 2pm. Hardly it will get 2 hours of sunlight through the moving or steady clouds.

What could be the reason for leaves turning yellow? Is it because of over-watering by me? Does it mean that leaves will turn yellow even by heavy rains? Will the leaves turn yellow all the way to the top ring of leaves from bottom ring of leaves?

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leaves turn yellow with: age, stress, dehydration, overwatering, overfertilizing, underfertilizing, too much sun, too little sun, cold, heat, growing, looking at it wrong etc. Leaves turning yellow are not much of any indication of anything unless ALL the leaves turn yellow overnight... that would be a bad thing (can mean plant is rotting or dying for some other reason). But mostly Sago palm leaves do that for whatever reason they have. Moving one would certainly be plenty reason for leaves to turn yellow. Personally, whenever I move one of these, I cut ALL the leaves off first (mostly to make the move easier) and they always come back eventually. But do be carefully not to overwater one of these... they need less water than you think, particularly if you are going to plant them in a poorly draining sany mix (the more perlite the better... in fact, most cycad growers mover their more touchy cycads to 100% pumice or perlite for a year or so if just dug up from the field). I think your mix has WAY too much sand it in (no sand at all, is best, unless you have really large grain sand, like #12 or larger (bordering on gravel at that point)). Good way to rot a plant is putting it in sand (have done that before).

    Bookmark   July 4, 2011 at 3:44PM
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I thought perlite is for decorating the plant so I used 10% on the top but never thought 100% perlite or pumice! is best without sand. I will try that. Thanks.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2011 at 12:44PM
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I made some long holes in the sand as deep as the sand pot using a small stick as thick as a pen and I observed that the tip of the stick is slighlty wet that means the base of the sand pot is quite wet than the sand at the top.

The next day the sand went dry at the top and moist at the bottom then I removed 50%sand around the trunk at the top half of the pot without disturbing the roots and added 50% perlite. After a week not a leave turned yellow since when I added 50% perlite.

Now it drains well and shines well in the sun.

The strong reasons for leaves turning yellow.
1. Some of the tiny thread like roots were damaged and ripped off when transplanting to pot from the sales black sand packet in which the Cycas was kept and sold.
2. Overwatering caused the sand to turn wet at the base of the pot and repotting 3 times caused the massive trunk to slam against the base of sand pot while receiving some shock.

Thanks again to lzrddr.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 11:18AM
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