Adeniums forum: Adenium beginner need tips

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Name: Djavid
Norway
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Djavid
Jul 18, 2015 4:13 AM CST
After losing my 6 yr old desert rose to root rot and lice, I went ahead and bought a batch of seeds. Out of 20 mix seeds I got 14 seedlings. 10 which have grown faster and I have trimmed the roots and repotted.


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They are now about 7 weeks old. As I live in Norway they rarely see the sun. The soil is still permanently moist getting water from the bottom. Is it time to let the soil dry between watering?

I'm having some problems with mildew on the soil. I'm thinking maybe this can be fixed using gravel or sand on top..?
Also I've read alot about "pinching". Can someone please explain in detail what this is because I don't fully understand how and when to do it. Do I pinch off the top leaves or just "hurt" it a little?

About 2 weeks ago I planted 25 new seeds.




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The four larger ones on top are from my first attempt and are about 7 weeks old.

Any tips will be greatly appreciated! Hurray!

Name: Hetty
Sunny Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
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Dutchlady1
Jul 18, 2015 5:29 AM CST
Welcome! Djavid!! As I already said, I think your plants are ready to be a bit drier. Remember they are called 'Desert Rose' for a reason. I am sure our knowledgeable members here will have other good suggestions for you.
Name: Doris Klene
Greensburg,Indiana.
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kareoke
Jul 18, 2015 6:00 AM CST
They are looking good but do NOT keep them wet, they like to be more dry than wet, why did you cut the roots when they are so young
only time I trimmed mine was when they got too big and I repotted, and trimmed the branches down, I am sure yours will do good.
Name: Djavid
Norway
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Djavid
Jul 18, 2015 6:48 AM CST
Thank you Dutchlady1 and kareoke Thank You!
I read somewhere that the seedlings were ready to be repotted when they had 6 full leaves and that I should trim the long root when I did so. I will try not cutting the roots of my new seedlings =)
Name: Rick
Vancouver Island, Canada (Zone 8a)
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RCanada
Jul 18, 2015 7:49 AM CST
The newly germinated seedlings will require more water and to stay moister than a older plant. They require more moisture usually until they have 4-5 true leaves. On the other hand. They do need to still dry back slightly, they cannot stay water logged. If water is always available from the bottom, then this is too much.

Many people root prune hoping to create a larger caudex early on or to do root training, but I prefer to and I think most just let the seedlings get a good healthy root system. I believe that this human intervention (root pruning) may assist with the desired appearance, but the seedling is going to give you what it is genetically determined by itself.
Pinching. I have done a lot of this, but for myself I do it very early on to produce more branching. I would not do it if I only had a few plants. I usually wait to see what the seedlings are going to do on their own and with a few that are growing more vertically. I may pinch out.

Grit on top will help with fungus knats.
Rick
"Many times a day I realize how much my own outer and inner life is built upon the labors of my fellow men, both living and dead, and how earnestly I must exert myself in order to give in return as much as I received"
Name: Cindi Russo
Palm Harbor, FL (Zone 9b)
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cindiquilt
Jul 18, 2015 7:57 AM CST
Your seedlings look good, Djavid.
I am also new to growing adenium seedlings this spring. You will learn a lot here form these nice folks.
Cindi
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
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drdawg
Jul 18, 2015 8:21 AM CST
I am following along too, Cindi. I just germinated my first (donated) seeds and so far have 18 seedlings. I assume I will pot them all up separately in small clay pots near the end of summer and then greenhouse-grow them through the fall and winter months.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
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Name: Cindi Russo
Palm Harbor, FL (Zone 9b)
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cindiquilt
Jul 18, 2015 8:33 AM CST
I plan to keep mine outside as long as I can. Maybe until end of November. My original plant had been outdoors for the past two years. We get few freezes.
Cindi
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
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drdawg
Jul 18, 2015 8:43 AM CST
Here in NE Mississippi, we'll begin to get frosts in November and possibly some freezing temps. as well. It is not unusual to have 10-20 nights in the 20's and a handful of nights in the teens in the winter months. I have to grow in my greenhouses during the fall/winter months. You are lucky, Cindi.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
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If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Oahu, Hawaii
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jericson22
Jul 18, 2015 11:52 AM CST
your seedlings is to young to be root pruned, they need all the feeder roots they can get for there survival, i have a seed flats were i planted them and until now they still in there happy and striding, they are 76 days young, and im not planning to move them till they hit 90,

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seedlings needs lots of water, but not like drowning, let them dry out grab a toothpick poke your soil if its moist or its dry, then bottom water them, you can start feeding your seedlings in small doses also
and the name desert rose means they cannot be watered to much, all plants love to be watered, they called desert rose because most of these species came from arid deserts,dry lands etc, and all these species that grew in the wild are all adapted to its harsh environment, but for us, we can control that, we can water them, we can feed them, we can nurture them, as long you do it right your plants will love you,

im not sure about the weather in Norway, try to buy a grow light for there artificial light for now so that they can get proper heat everyday, and put some heat mat if its really cold on you area,

pinching, you can pinch them if you want to force branching, every species differ, some will show branching by the time they are born, and some don't have it will later on, for me i don't like pinching that much for this species, i want to grow mines in its natural form, well this method will be for those i hand pick to raise, and the rest will be experiments those i can prune, slice them up, and so on...
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
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drdawg
Jul 19, 2015 12:47 PM CST
Someone asked if I would have adeniums for her in the spring and I just don't know since I have never grown them, and I am growing from seed. Mine are all approximately 1" tall with 2-4 leaves. How fast do they generally grow and at what point are they ready to transplant into individual 2" clay pots? In growing orchids, I would call these pots "compots" (6-8" clay pots) and the media is a mix of 1/3 potting mix, 1/3 fine orchid mix, and 1/3 sand.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
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If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Doris Klene
Greensburg,Indiana.
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kareoke
Jul 19, 2015 1:02 PM CST
No way by Spring, you cannot just cut off a branch, you have to start with seeds, that is if you want a nice Caudex, if you do not care about the Caudex then it doesn't matter. And you will not have blooms or seed pods for quite awhile,
I hope you enjoy growing them.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
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drdawg
Jul 19, 2015 1:10 PM CST
Perhaps you did not understand my question. I don't want to cut anything off, not a branch and not roots. I am not interested in having them blooming size and certainly not with seed pods. I just want these "baby" plants to grow a caudex, but that caudex doesn't have to be large by any means. This lady just wants some of my plants when they are old enough/mature enough to be grown in individual pots. I just need an estimate of how tall/wide the plants will be next spring. They will overwinter in a warm greenhouse, which is where they germinated. By the way, can they be put outside in full sun or perhaps partial sun now or should I just keep them in my 70% shaded (hot) greenhouse?

Thank you in advance for this information. I'm a tropical plant (mostly orchids) grower and not a succulent grower.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
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If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: KadieD
Oceania, Mariana Islands (Zone 11b)
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Rainbow
Jul 20, 2015 1:22 AM CST
Oh my Ken! You have entered into the realm of adeniums. Lots of research to do. Your questions want a nut-shell answer and that is very hard to do. Suffice it to say from me, treat them like you would with your orchids.
-Kadie
Name: Doris Klene
Greensburg,Indiana.
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kareoke
Jul 20, 2015 6:44 AM CST
I am sorry I misunderstood your question, as for getting a caudex it takes a long time, other than a fat little stem wich may take from two to 5 years a really good caudex takes several years.

this one is 12 yrs old

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this is my largest, 15 yrs.





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Name: Ron
Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
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rattlebox
Jul 20, 2015 8:34 AM CST

Sure, they'll have a caudex by spring. They pretty much start off with a caudex (just think of pretty much any other type seedling in comparison). It's not just a fat stem. During the first few months the seedlings concentrate on developing the caudex with a few leaves, but increasing in size.

However, just as a palm tree seedling doesn't look like a palm tree until it starts developing a trunk, the caudex isn't obvious as such until the Adenium seedlings start developing one or more vertical stems. Once the stem has grown a bit, the plant takes on a more bottle shape. This is probably the stage you are asking about.

As Kadie pointed out, there is no simple answer to your question. Much depends on the amount of sun, the temperature, soil moisture, and available nutrients. Seedlings in my experience can handle a lot of direct sun, though maybe not FULL sun (meaning direct sun all day long). Give them some protection from hot afternoon sun.

Also, keep in mind direct sun tends to dry the soil faster, particularly the top inch or so. Adenium seedlings have a very slight root system, and require consistent moisture (NOT wetness) during their first several months to thrive. If the soil dries out too much, even briefly, it can put the young plant into a stage of semi-dormancy. It will still grow, but more slowly for a while. This is likely where the notion comes from that seedlings grow better as a group than as individual seedlings, which I have also noted to seem true. The collective "canopy" of leaves helps slow evaporation such that the soil stays rather evenly moist all the way to the surface.

Cold will do the same thing. It is not just daytime temperature that is important. Daytime temperatures here tend to be quite a nice temperature for Adenium growth through the winter, but chilly nights cause the semi-dormancy I mentioned and the growth of my seedlings slowed way down.

We have a good eight months or so before "spring", so your seedlings, if well grown, can easily be 5-6" tall or better with quite obvious caudices. Actually, they should be quite cute little "bottle" plants before cold weather sets in.

Hope this helps!

[He] decided that if a few quiet beers wouldn't allow him to see things in a different light, then a few more probably would. - Terry Pratchett
Name: Ron
Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Region: Florida Hummingbirder Butterflies Bromeliad Tropicals Foliage Fan
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rattlebox
Jul 20, 2015 8:52 AM CST
Check out this post by @jericson22 of some of his seedlings at approx. 5-6 months of age:

http://garden.org/thread/view_post/902602/

[He] decided that if a few quiet beers wouldn't allow him to see things in a different light, then a few more probably would. - Terry Pratchett
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Jul 20, 2015 9:14 AM CST
Hi Djavid! I would go with the suggestion of jericson. While these adeniums are still young they need a bit more moisture since it is still establishing, but with intervals as well, not too soggy wet. And one thing for sure it loves as much sun it can during the warm and hot days. So you may have to augment your set-up with grow lights as already suggested too, if light is not a lot there.

I enjoy watching everyone's effort starting from seed..I am never good at that, so hope your plant thrives well later on. Good luck! Smiling

Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
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drdawg
Jul 20, 2015 10:08 AM CST
Thank you so much for that information, Ron. I think I can confidently tell the lady in question that I will have "cute" adeniums in the spring for her. I have some excellent spots to put these community pots so that the plants will get some sun but not harsh sun. I have over 1000 tropical plants and sun/shade selection is everything. I think I will put a couple of the pots outside and leave a couple in the "hothouse". That's going to be my experiment. I love to experiment! Hurray!
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
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If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
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tarev
Jul 20, 2015 10:15 AM CST
Usually with the younger Adeniums, I have more problems overwintering them, trying to get a good balance of keeping them moist and dry out properly on cold days and sun is less. Lost some along the way. But when it is already hot and sunny time, it is easy growing, really thirsty here in our dry area.

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