Ask a Question forum→Mealy bugs, other possible damage on big cactus

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Ohio
kristenmcp
May 7, 2020 10:27 AM CST
I was given this cactus by a friend looking to downsize. It came to me this way and hoping I can save it? I did seem to find mealy bugs on it (I think that's what they were?! White little dots with a black center?) and sprayed with alcohol/wiped them off. Do I need to repot? Is this rootrot? I don't want it to die. It's so pretty. I've heard maybe Neem oil would help? Just would rather ask someone than guess completely.
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Name: one-eye-luke US.Vet.
Texas (Zone 8a)
Quitter's never Win
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oneeyeluke
May 8, 2020 3:44 AM CST
You gotta hit those mealy bugs everyday for a while to get rid of of them however using alcohol/wiped is best.
NOT A EXPERT! Just a grow worm! I never met a plant I didn’t love.✌
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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DaisyI
May 8, 2020 10:44 AM CST
I don't see any sign of mealybugs (they look like little tufts of cotton). It does appear to be suffering from rot at the base.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

President: Orchid Society of Northern Nevada
Webmaster: osnnv.org
Ohio
kristenmcp
May 8, 2020 10:46 AM CST
DaisyI said:I don't see any sign of mealybugs (they look like little tufts of cotton). It does appear to be suffering from rot at the base.


Rot from overwatering? Not sure if I'm replying the correct way
Ohio
kristenmcp
May 8, 2020 10:47 AM CST
DaisyI said:I don't see any sign of mealybugs (they look like little tufts of cotton). It does appear to be suffering from rot at the base.


Also I had already wiped most of the white areas off. Not little cotton sections, but most like little white scabs with a black dot in the middle
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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DaisyI
May 8, 2020 10:53 AM CST
Yes, you are replying the right way.

Unless you know the history of the plant, its all a guess - too much water and too little light over the winter could do it though. A rotting base isn't a good thing. You have two courses of action:

Wait and see. Find a spot with full sun and don't water until the soil is dry.

Cutting it off at the joint and rerooting the top. Its a long slow process (that may or may not work) but may be the only hope for this plant.

Whatever you do, it needs full sun.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

President: Orchid Society of Northern Nevada
Webmaster: osnnv.org
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
May 8, 2020 10:54 AM CST
kristenmcp said:

Also I had already wiped most of the white areas off. Not little cotton sections, but most like little white scabs with a black dot in the middle


Maybe scale. Wiping them off is about the only way to get rid of them.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

President: Orchid Society of Northern Nevada
Webmaster: osnnv.org
Ohio
kristenmcp
May 8, 2020 10:57 AM CST
DaisyI said:Yes, you are replying the right way.

Unless you know the history of the plant, its all a guess - too much water and too little light over the winter could do it though. A rotting base isn't a good thing. You have two courses of action:

Wait and see. Find a spot with full sun and don't water until the soil is dry.

Cutting it off at the joint and rerooting the top. Its a long slow process (that may or may not work) but may be the only hope for this plant.

Whatever you do, it needs full sun.



Ok great. I'm going to go ahead and cut at the joint because it looks really rough at the very bottom. I was worried that might be the case. I've had it near a grow light the past couple days. Hoping Ohio warms up enough for all my cacti to go outside. I will cut and allow the cutting to harden then put in some cacti soil mix. Any other tips you have? Thanks so much for your help!

Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
May 8, 2020 11:02 AM CST
No, it sounds like you know what you are doing. Don't bury too much stem, use bamboo sticks tied into a teepee to hold the plant up.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

President: Orchid Society of Northern Nevada
Webmaster: osnnv.org

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