Ask a Question forum: Fertilizer and possible bugs?

Views: 140, Replies: 5 » Jump to the end
Name: Salem Mclean
Southern Ontario
Salemmc
Mar 25, 2016 11:24 AM CST
I am somewhat new to having indoor plants and have some questions regarding fertilizers and possible mites. I currently have a desert rose, a boat lily, and a small umbrella tree.
The desert rose has been growing misshapen leaves and I need to put it in a larger pot soon. (It's in a salad bowl because I don't have anything large enough for it until the gardening centre opens) the boat lily is fine and isn't having any problems.
The umbrella tree has some rust spots on it and some white things on the stem and I'm not to sure what it is. They are all currently in potting mix.

I picked up $3 miracle grow 6-12-6 fertilizer from the grocery store but I'm not sure if they would help or harm my plants. Any input is appreciated. :)
Thumb of 2016-03-25/Salemmc/bfdf69


Thumb of 2016-03-25/Salemmc/52fed2


Thumb of 2016-03-25/Salemmc/282fc4

Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
dyzzypyxxy
Mar 25, 2016 11:43 AM CST
Hi Salem, and welcome to ATP.

Yes, your umbrella plant looks like it has some mites. A very mild soapy water spray will take care of that - 1/2tsp. dish soap to a liter of water, or less. More is not better with soap. Spray every part of the plant, being sure to hit the undersides of the leaves and also the surface of the soil. You will need to do this twice, a week or so apart, because the spray kills live insects but not the eggs, so you need the second application to get the next generation before they reproduce. Then keep an eagle eye on it (magnifier helps) for any recurrence. Between applications, if you can take it outside, or into the shower, or kitchen sink and rinse it thoroughly with tepid water it will be happy.

Only other problem I see is your adenium really needs drainage desperately, so a salad bowl is a death trap. Hurry to the garden store and get a nice pot with lots of holes, and some coarse potting mix like cactus mix to lighten up that nice dark soil it's in.

Yes on the fertilizer, but I would mix it at half the strength that the directions on the package say. In warmer weather, if you take your plants outside they can probably use full strength, but right now with the new growth and cool weather, they are just starting to grow again. Half strength will be plenty.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Daisy
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
Mar 25, 2016 11:46 AM CST
Hi and Welcome to ATP! Welcome!

Boat lily - Tradescantia

The desert rose (Adenium) looks ok to me. I worry about the salad bowl as these are succulents. Be careful about over-watering. When you get a pot, buy unglazed terra cotta that is about 1 inch wider than your plant. Use a cactus potting soil with some added perlite.

The umbrella tree (Schefflera) has a case of some kind of insects - I can't tell what. Maybe aphids. If the plant isn't too big, put it in the sink (or shower) and try to wash the insects off. Tip the plant onto its side so you wash the insects down the drain, not into the soil.

The fertilizer is fine but I would mix it about half strength.

Daisy
Name: Salem Mclean
Southern Ontario
Salemmc
Mar 25, 2016 11:50 AM CST
Thank you for your replies! They have helps me a lot. The fertilizers are small sticks that you poke into the soil. Should I break them in half or use half of what the box says?
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
dyzzypyxxy
Mar 25, 2016 11:55 AM CST
Hm, I haven't used those fertilizer sticks in years and years. The problem with them is you don't really know how much fert the plant is getting, and you don't know when they are used up, either. Plus all the goodies are released into one small area of the pot, not throughout the potting medium. It's sort of hit or miss. That's the risk of buying plant stuff at the grocery store . .. Smiling

I'd suggest you can use the sticks for the boat lily, pretty much nothing can hurt those. But for the other two plants, get a package of soluble fertilizer when you go to the garden store, and use that at half strength. Then you will know and be able to control how much you are feeding those plants.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member Celebrating Gardening: 2015 I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped beta test the first seed swap Region: United States of America Region: Michigan
Seed Starter Vegetable Grower Birds Butterflies Dog Lover Cat Lover
Image
Weedwhacker
Mar 25, 2016 3:13 PM CST
Welcome to All Things Plants, @Salemmc !

Good advice above from Elaine and Daisy, and there are also more specific forums if you are interested in checking those out -- one for Adeniums (your Desert Rose), and one for houseplants in general. Smiling
"Blessed is he who has learned to laugh at himself, for he shall never cease to be entertained."
- John Powell / Cubits.org - A Universe of Communities
/ Share your recipes: Favorite Recipes A-Z cubit
C/F temp conversion / NGA Member Map

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Ask a Question forum
You must first create a username and login before you can reply to this thread.

Today's site banner is by nativeplantlover and is called "Bumble Veronica Pink"