Bulbs forum: What's wrong with these caladiums?

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Name: Alice
Saint Helena Island, SC (Zone 9a)
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ardesia
Jul 26, 2014 1:47 PM CST
Not quite a month ago I bought two 6" pots of thai caladiums to put in a basket to brighten a corner on the porch. It is under an over hang so there is no direct sun but the exposure is south east so that corner gets plenty of light. I have watched the watering carefully to prevent over or under watering.
Within the past two weeks they have started to decline, the stems have gotten floppy and the leaves are looking washed out. Are they salvageable or should I just consider them annuals with a very short (2 weeks) period when they looked good?

Thumb of 2014-07-26/ardesia/2a0ea7


Thumb of 2014-07-26/ardesia/f57d50

Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.
Name: Bonnie Sojourner
Harris Brake Lake, Arkansas (Zone 7a)
Magnolia zone
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grannysgarden
Jul 26, 2014 5:35 PM CST
They should last a lot longer than two weeks. I would say give them more light, as much as you can without putting them in direct sunlight. and see if it makes a difference. They should start putting up new leaves when they get happy then you can trim off the older ones.
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Name: Alice
Saint Helena Island, SC (Zone 9a)
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ardesia
Jul 28, 2014 9:39 AM CST
Thank you, although they get plenty of light, I did move them out to the steps for more light and left them for about a week but there was no improvement. These must be tissue culture plants and they are just not as robust as those grown the traditional way.
Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Jul 28, 2014 9:46 AM CST
Is there a drain hole in that container? In the above pic, they look like they're leaning toward more light to me too. Caladiums are easy to save when finished for the year, if interested and not hardy where you are. More light might cause them to use water more quickly. Also looks like quite a few in that pot, maybe they're feeling crowded?
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Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
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Seedfork
Jul 28, 2014 10:02 AM CST
I wonder how long they were at the nursery, could just be they are ready for a rest? They could have been forced in a green house and just be naturally fading back in vigor.
Name: Bill Kurek
Lake Placid, FL (Zone 9b)
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caladiums4less
Sep 4, 2014 11:09 AM CST
They were definitely tissue cultures.
The Thai caladiums can be VERY tricky to grow. Very tempermental...
Name: Alice
Saint Helena Island, SC (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Garden Photography Container Gardener Butterflies Bromeliad
Birds Ponds Region: South Carolina Tropicals
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ardesia
Sep 4, 2014 11:33 AM CST
Sorry to be AWOL, I have been traveling. Yes, the bulbs were crowded in the pot and it is possible they will be hardy; it is more damp than cold here during the cold months and sometimes caladiums are fine but in wetter winters they rot.

I took them out of the pots and planted them in the ground and they have revived nicely. There are many new leaves and it looks like they will be good for a while. Guess they just needed to spread their roots a bit.
Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.

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