Growing Pains: Fasciated Plant

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Growing Pains

By valleylynn
January 1, 2010

A plant clinic for Sempervivum, Jovibarba and J. heuffelii. This is a companion article for the Sempervivum and Jovibarba forum.

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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
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goldfinch4
Jul 25, 2010 6:13 AM CST
I copied this thread from semp forum. I will keep a progress report going here.

Guess what I found today - more fasciated chicks! I wonder if it has something to do with all the rain we've been having. Two chicks fell off a hen that was on my turtle topiary. These pictures are all of the same one.

Thumb of 2010-07-25/goldfinch4/77bb14
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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Seller of Garden Stuff I sent a postcard to Randy! Sempervivums Sedums Region: Wisconsin Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
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goldfinch4
Jul 25, 2010 6:14 AM CST
Another angle

Thumb of 2010-07-25/goldfinch4/874653
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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Seller of Garden Stuff I sent a postcard to Randy! Sempervivums Sedums Region: Wisconsin Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
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goldfinch4
Jul 25, 2010 6:14 AM CST
And one more angle

Thumb of 2010-07-25/goldfinch4/a3a1d3
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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Seller of Garden Stuff I sent a postcard to Randy! Sempervivums Sedums Region: Wisconsin Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
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goldfinch4
Jul 25, 2010 6:15 AM CST
I would love to save these but here is my question. The stems on them are really super woody, not like a normal stolen at all. You can see the stem in this picture. Right now I've just potted them up like I would normally, but I'm wondering if I should try something else instead. Any suggestions???

Thumb of 2010-07-25/goldfinch4/ea9e34
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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Seller of Garden Stuff I sent a postcard to Randy! Sempervivums Sedums Region: Wisconsin Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
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goldfinch4
Jul 25, 2010 6:16 AM CST
Here is Dr. Houseleaks reponse:

Chris, Interesting. When I first looked at them, I just thought they were leaves and am still not convinced they are chicks. You may be right about that, but it is hard to tell from the pictures.

I would suggest you make sure that some of the green is in contact with the ground and watch them closely. A second alternative is to put the pot they are in in a closed clear plastic bag. If you do this you need to make sure they they are not exposed to direct sun light and make sure that the potting mix is neither too wet nor too dry. As you are an experienced grower, you should be able to judge. Perhaps a window indoors that gets bright light but no sun. The idea is to give them a stable, healthy, protected environment.

Perhaps a local company is able to do tissue culture and might be willing to help preserve an unusual plant? A local college with a biology department? If it is genetic, you would want to preserve/propagate the hen as well as the chick.

Keep all of the chicks from the hen and propagate them, even the ones that look normal. If the trait is genetic, then the normal chicks might show the trait later in life or in their chicks as some point.

If the fasciated "chicks" don't survive, then you need to concentrate on propagating the hen. If it was me and no professional help was available, I would do surgery this year to propagate the hen, regardless of the state of the chicks.

It's a risk. It doesn't always work, but I would dig up and divide the hen by cutting it in half vertically (carefully), apply a fungicide and dry a day or two, then plant each half. I would try to make the cut go very close to the growing tip of the hen. Keep them growing in the house under bright light and divide again once they are big enough. The divisions like this will often produce multiple plants from each piece, but sometimes the pieces can die. It can also depend on the size of the hen, as well as the variety of semp. I have also successfully used this method to save a hen that has started crowning for blooming, but it is very iffy for that. Think of it as vegetatively reproducing the hen, sort of like we do with heuffelii.

Why is it a risk? Well, beyond the cutting risks, there is a slight chance that the hen might survive after blooming or never bloom. But I think that is very unlikely. There is also the chance that the hen would not be able to properly generate new plants or regenerate itself normally. (but this is also why you are trying to propagate vegetatively.) Also consider that what you are seeing as "chicks" just might be fasciate flower spikes, in which case the hen may be getting ready to die.

Lot's of variables here. A lot also depends on how important it is to you to keep these going and how much expense and effort you are willing to undertake.

Oh, one more thing. If they are fasciated chicks, we don't know what the adult plants could look like! Very interesting possibilities there. Keep in mind that this could also be caused by a virus or some other environmental condition as well.

All these possibilities make this a fun project for you and it should be a worthwhile learning experience, regardless of outcome. Good luck!!

Lynn, I would put as much of the plant (the green plant) in direct contact with the ground as I could.
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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Seller of Garden Stuff I sent a postcard to Randy! Sempervivums Sedums Region: Wisconsin Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
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goldfinch4
Jul 25, 2010 6:31 AM CST
Thanks for the great advice - once again! Thumbs up Now I'm really excited. I will put the pots in a bag in the house as you suggested. I do have grow lights and will put them under those. I'm on my way to remove the hen and her other chicks from the topiary too.

The thought of performing surgery on the hen scares me, but I'm going to do it anyway. The semp is a NOID and the hen is about 1-1/2" diameter.

Here is the 2nd chick.

Thumb of 2010-07-25/goldfinch4/06464c
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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Seller of Garden Stuff I sent a postcard to Randy! Sempervivums Sedums Region: Wisconsin Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
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goldfinch4
Jul 25, 2010 6:32 AM CST
This picture doesn't show it real well, but its growing in an 'S' shape.

Thumb of 2010-07-25/goldfinch4/d7a1a7
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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Seller of Garden Stuff I sent a postcard to Randy! Sempervivums Sedums Region: Wisconsin Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
Image
goldfinch4
Jul 25, 2010 6:32 AM CST
Here is the hen. Unfortunately she only has one more chick but this one looks normal.

Thumb of 2010-07-25/goldfinch4/9e7ba6
Cubits Store: The Sempervivum Patch - plants, containers, accessories!
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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Seller of Garden Stuff I sent a postcard to Randy! Sempervivums Sedums Region: Wisconsin Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
Image
goldfinch4
Jul 25, 2010 6:33 AM CST
The attached chick already has a little root on it too.

Thumb of 2010-07-25/goldfinch4/01c234
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Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Feb 23, 2011 1:39 PM CST
Chris, just wondering how the fasciated semp is doing? Or can you even see it right now?
Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Seller of Garden Stuff I sent a postcard to Randy! Sempervivums Sedums Region: Wisconsin Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
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goldfinch4
Feb 23, 2011 2:00 PM CST
Nope, under about 3 feet of snow again!
Cubits Store: The Sempervivum Patch - plants, containers, accessories!
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Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Feb 23, 2011 2:43 PM CST
Okay, I will watch for an update when the snow is gone. Whistling
Name: BlueFox
Grand Forks, B.C. Cdn. Zone 5A (Zone 4a)
Romantic & Rustic, Xeric & Organic
Charter ATP Member Sedums Sempervivums Region: Canadian Garden Art Enjoys or suffers cold winters
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BlueFox
May 23, 2011 5:37 PM CST
I was wondering about a couple of things with Fuzzy Wuzzy and Whirl-i-gig, both crested types of Sempervivum. Some of the chicks definitely don't show the fasciation, and others seem to show it from quite small. What is the consensus on if the non-fasciated ones will either turn into fasciated forms, or produce fasciated chicks?

Chris, what happened with yours? I see what you mean about the woody stem - one of my Fuzzy Wuzzy has a stem about 4" long, with a tiny clump of roots at the base. I'm going to see if I can encourage some more roots to grow out of the crown.
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
May 23, 2011 7:13 PM CST
Do you have a photo Jacki so we can see what it looks like?

Chris how is your little fasciated chick doing?

I know this one isn't a form of fasciating, but it is growing so odd, even more so right now. I will have to current photo. I have two of them growing in this strange way and two normal rosettes.

S. 'Lone Star'
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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
Seller of Garden Stuff I sent a postcard to Randy! Sempervivums Sedums Region: Wisconsin Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle
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goldfinch4
May 24, 2011 2:19 AM CST
I performed surgery on it but it didn't make it. I have a couple of really odd ones in the garden again that are similar to yours Lynn, and some similar to Twit's that got hail damage and is now growing odd. I know at least one of my weird ones is one that the critters kept digging up all the time so I'm sure that got damaged too.

I remember reading somewhere exactly what you said Jacki. Most crested types will have both normal and crested chicks.
Cubits Store: The Sempervivum Patch - plants, containers, accessories!
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Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
May 24, 2011 8:42 AM CST
I will keep an eye on my Whirl-i-gig to see what it produces. It looks like mine is increasing. It is so hard to tell with the oddness of it growth. Blinking
Name: BlueFox
Grand Forks, B.C. Cdn. Zone 5A (Zone 4a)
Romantic & Rustic, Xeric & Organic
Charter ATP Member Sedums Sempervivums Region: Canadian Garden Art Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Cactus and Succulents Butterflies I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Xeriscape Garden Ideas: Level 1
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BlueFox
May 24, 2011 10:57 AM CST
I've had two varieties that did the 'twinning' thing Lynn - Saga, and Ruby Heart both have a couple of chicks that are like this. It's like conjoined twins, maybe they can't be surgically separated. Thumbs down

Here are some Whirl-i-gig clumps - they are so ugly. The tall stem is half rotten inside where I ripped it open, and there was even a tiny slug inside it! These rosettes never seem to bloom, so these are really old, like about four years at least.
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The smaller rosettes are better, but tiny (each of these is max half inch across)

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Fuzzy Wuzzy has variable cresting, some chicks seem normal, others have the crests. It's about 50% of each right now.

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This is Ruby Heart with two twinned rosettes, and Saga (bottom pic) with one. These also don't seem to bloom.

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Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
twitcher
May 24, 2011 11:13 AM CST
I've had the twinning thing take place a number of times. It will often result when you cut rosettes into two or more pieces. The regeneration will often trigger production of additional rosettes, sometimes without the normal stolons.
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
May 24, 2011 11:44 AM CST
Great photos Jacki. Now I wonder what my Whirl-i-gig is going to do?
Name: BlueFox
Grand Forks, B.C. Cdn. Zone 5A (Zone 4a)
Romantic & Rustic, Xeric & Organic
Charter ATP Member Sedums Sempervivums Region: Canadian Garden Art Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Cactus and Succulents Butterflies I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Xeriscape Garden Ideas: Level 1
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BlueFox
May 24, 2011 12:01 PM CST
I've never cut these, but who knows? It could be a tiny bit of damage when they're really small, and this is the result. I'm not sure if I want to cut them apart or just leave them alone.

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