mexican fencepost problem - Knowledgebase Question

Peoria, Ar
Avatar for zsmail1
Question by zsmail1
July 9, 2010
I have a cluster of 3 mexican fencepost cactus that were planted in 9/09. One in the cluster is turning yellow w/ black soft circles from the bottom to the middle. What is this and how can I stop it and save it? If I can't save it, how do I remove it without killing the other two in the cluster?

Answer from NGA
July 9, 2010
Sounds like a bacterial disease has infected your organ pipe cactus. There may be no way to save it - usually by the time you see the symptoms, the cactus will be fully involved. However, you might try cutting out the diseased plant parts by digging into the cactus with a sharp knife and cutting away the damaged tissue. The wounds will callous over and the cactus will always have scars but it may recover and outgrow the problem. If you can't save it, just cut it cleanly from the grouping of plants, as far down as you can. A new cactus may sprout from the roots to fill in the empty space. At least I hope it does~

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