Houseplants forum: Need help identifying and saving houseplant

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jerkwad152
Sep 20, 2016 4:02 PM CST
I don't know much of anything about plants or gardening in general. About the best I can do is keep from over or underwatering, and tossing some plant food in there as needed.

That said, the crown(?) of the plant seemed to have gotten too heavy and the whole thing kind of flopped over, and kinked the stem in the process. I propped it up with a stick, but the fronds(?) started dying off.

I'm not sure if I should cut it off below the kinked part, since I don't even know if it would grow back. Is there anything else I should be doing?

Sorry about the camera work, my hands don't always behave the way I want them to.
Thumb of 2016-09-20/jerkwad152/2b9f09
Thumb of 2016-09-20/jerkwad152/58155f

[Last edited by jerkwad152 - Sep 20, 2016 4:03 PM (+)]
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Name: Carter Mayer
Houston, TX (Zone 9b)
Tropicals Adeniums Plant Identifier
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Carter
Sep 21, 2016 6:04 AM CST
Hi, @jerkwad152. Great name. Smiling This is a variety of dracaena. They are normally tough, resilient indoor plants, but this one looks like it has been put through the ringer! If the stem got weak enough to kink (meaning actually bend at a sharp angle) on its own, my guess is that at least that particularly section of the stem is dead. If it is just slightly bent, though, that could just be that it's too top heavy from too little light making the stem thin and weak.

It's hard to tell from the pic - is the stem brown and withered or shriveled in any sections? How much are you watering it? My initial guess is that it's been too dry for too long and it's dying from the bottom up. Overwatering could possibly cause the same though, though. If the stem is withered and shriveled up at any point, what I would do is cut off the top part of the plant where you still have plump, healthy stem remaining, put it in a glass of water, and re-root it. (Yes, you can root these by just sitting them in water.) But, in order to be successful doing this, you have to make sure you cut it off above any dead part of the stem. You'll need to change the water every day or so in order to keep it fresh, and then once you see it developing roots, you can repot it in some fresh soil.
Name: Laurie Basler
Western Washington (Zone 7b)
Houseplants Region: Pacific Northwest Sedums Orchids
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lauriebasler
Sep 24, 2016 1:45 AM CST
Perfect explanation of the best solution there is, Carter. This sounds severe. It is not only the only hope, IMO; but it will actually work. It's fun to watch big stems like these root in water. They root quite quickly, and you can breath a sigh of relief you have not lost the plant at all. Good Luck!!
Laurie B
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional interior landscaper
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WillC
Sep 24, 2016 7:44 AM CST
Your Dracaena warneckei is dying from the bottom up. That means the roots are beyond recovery. The only salvation is to take a tip cutting as Carter suggested and discard the rest of the plant.

Lack of good light may be part of the problem, but improper watering is the primary culprit here. BTW, fertilizer is intended for use on healthy, vigorously growing plants. It s not medicine.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
[url=www.HorticulturalHelp.com]www.HorticulturalHelp.com[/url]

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