Houseplants forum→draceana advice

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mrmoltobene
May 15, 2020 10:06 PM CST
Glad to be here! I hope to begin my new vocation as a nuturer of houseplants. I havent been successful yet. I've killed a few dracaena's, a chicken gizzard aralia a royal palm, a ficus...all in the same spot!. My spouse doesn't like houseplants and prefers plastic ones. I keep trying cause i like the living breathing ones better. Ive learned not to repot, not to fertilize and not to overwater. I used a humidity gauge for years but lost faith after some still died.
My 2 month old dracaena has started having a few leaves yellow and dry out mid trunk...i havent waterted in 1 week. I let water sit to room temp and try to let chlorine evaporate. The top 2 inches of soil seems to be always dry. Its a 10 plastic pot (cheap black store pot) i haven't transplanted since purchase 2 months ago. House humidity is 40%. How often should i water and maybe i should really soak it. It has new shoots but the rest of the leaves seem droopy. Light 3m from a south facing window with veil window cover. Thanks in advance for any advice! I'm all ears! Smiling
Name: Sally
central Maryland
Seriously addicted to kettle chips.
Charter ATP Member Houseplants Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Region: Maryland Composter
Native Plants and Wildflowers Organic Gardener Region: United States of America Cat Lover Birds Butterflies
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sallyg
May 16, 2020 6:48 AM CST
Hi, welcome to the madness haha

I think your dracaena is not getting enough light. I thnk that could be part of the drooping.
You don't have to let water sit, that is outdated info.
House humidity is not a deal breaker, I grow office plants that get much drier sometimes and probably that dry is their 'normal'.
i'm pretty OK today, how are you? ;^)
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
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WillC
May 16, 2020 9:25 AM CST
I agree with what Sally has posted. Light is the key factor. It should be no more than 1 m from a very sunny completely uncovered window and directly in front of a window that is not as sunny. Without enough light, nothing else you do will matter.

Depending on the size of the pot, you may be letting the soil get dry too deep into the pot. When you do water, always add enough that some trickles through the drain holes.

A photo of your Marginata might prove helpful.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

mrmoltobene
May 18, 2020 8:49 AM CST
Thanks for the advice. I was hoping out wasn't light since my only option will be a lamp in that area. It is 3m (9ft) from a South facing window, in corner. It breaks my heart to think that i could have saved the aralia if I'd had more light. I used my cellphone as a light meter and it varied from 100 lumens to 1400 on bright day. I think that a plastic plant is going to fill that spot in the future if my spouse gets her way. :-(. I've attached some photos. Thanks again for the help!


Thumb of 2020-05-18/mrmoltobene/dea7c5



Thumb of 2020-05-18/mrmoltobene/839e35

Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Image
WillC
May 18, 2020 9:08 AM CST
Cell phone light meters are not that reliable, but it also matters where the light is tested. For example, the sides and back of your plant are getting much lower light than the side facing the window. LIght intensity also varies throughout the day.

A Dracaena 'Lisa' has a similar size and shape and would hold up better and longer than the Marginata. However, it too might start to thin out some after a few years.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
Name: Sally
central Maryland
Seriously addicted to kettle chips.
Charter ATP Member Houseplants Keeper of Poultry Vegetable Grower Region: Maryland Composter
Native Plants and Wildflowers Organic Gardener Region: United States of America Cat Lover Birds Butterflies
Image
sallyg
May 18, 2020 11:19 AM CST
A couple years isn't too bad for something you might find for 15 or 20 bucks at the big box Thumbs up Fight the good fight, have a real plant Rolling on the floor laughing
i'm pretty OK today, how are you? ;^)

mrmoltobene
May 18, 2020 3:40 PM CST
Thanks Will and Sally. I will get a plant caretaker in time. Rolling my eyes. So light is my issue. Any suggestions to read about light? I will try to find a better place to position it. Will mentions 1m from a sunny uncovered window. All my windows are veiled. .therefore i can put it near any window...preferably 1m? If the sun comes through will it burn the dracena? Is a south facung veiled window a good brightness?
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Image
WillC
May 19, 2020 7:11 AM CST
Unfortunately, even sheers block out most of the light that a plant requires for healthy growth no matter how close the plant is to the window. It may be that an artificial plant is your only option afterall. Sad
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

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