Asclepias tuberosa disease problem?

mwbeall(IN5 E tallgrassregion)July 9, 2009

These 4 mo/old plants are in 4" plastic pots. A few have gotten this "dry" spotted look on the leaves and the stems are "fuzzy." Several have withered up and eventually died, tho' the rest are doing fine. I havent seen any aphids or bugs...sunburn?? root problem? I can email a pic. Your expertise is welcome.

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linrose(6b KY)

I find these plants are extremely difficult to grow in pots, and are even tough to survive transplanting. They do have a taproot which creates most of the problems. They do not like to be wet which most commercial potting mixes are but prefer a dry soil. You may also have a fungal problem. I suggest your best bet is to get them in the ground in a non-clay, well draining soil in full sun.

I have yet to have any survive in my Kentucky clay soil, but I do have several wild ones growing in my field. I guess I'll enjoy them there and try other prairie plants in my own gardens.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 6:03PM
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anemone48

I have been the plant propagation manager in a native prairie flower greenhouse for 10 years. I have grown Asclepias Tuberosa by the thousands and yes I agree with linrose...get them into the ground. I have not see the symptoms you are having with your plants....I suspect it could be a fungus of some sort. Whenever I have planted these flowers in my own garden I always added plenty of gravel to my soil as I have heavy black prairie soil naturally, which is to heavy and holds to much moisture for these plants. I have never had an issue with transplanting them into other pots or the ground. Your problem could also be your pot...with the big taproot that these plants get they need a pot that is tall. Also where are you keeping the plants...this could affect them greatly. Get them into the ground and I'm sure they'll feel much better. IF nothing else spray them with a mild soap solution (1 tsp. of dawn dish soap to 1 quart of water)....this solution takes care of many ills, especially bugs.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2009 at 3:56AM
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anemone48

I have been the plant propagation manager in a native prairie flower greenhouse for 10 years. I have grown Asclepias Tuberosa by the thousands and I can never recall any of the symptoms your plants are having. I have never had an issue with transplanting them into other pots or the ground. Your problem could also be your pot...with the big taproot that these plants get they need a pot that is tall. I agree that it could also be the soil they are currently in.....some nursery soils are heavier, if nothing else get a soiless mix with very good drainage (i.e perlite in it). Also where are you keeping the plants...this could affect them greatly. Where did you get these plants? Some nurseries use way to much fertilizer and I have seen plants look like they are on deaths door while 'comming down from their fertilizer high'....some will come out of it and some do not. This is a native plant and needs very little if no fertilizer at all. Try to keep them in the shade until you plant them into your garden. When I planted some in my garden I added plenty of gravel because I have heavy black prairie dirt which does not have enough drainage on it's own. If you suspect insects as the culprit...mist the plants with a solution of 1tsp. of dawn dish soap mixed with 1 quart of water....it won't hurt the plants even if they are not infested with bugs.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2009 at 4:09AM
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mwbeall(IN5 E tallgrassregion)

Yes, I raised these from my own seed from local genotype. Not trying to raise them in pots, just potted up for transplant out in my prairie. I DID sprinkle a little ortho time-release fert on them and NOW believe this is fert burn (anemone!). They go into the ground this weekend. Thanks for the help.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2009 at 2:50PM
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