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Avatar for jamesmcdowell
May 30, 2020 4:46 PM CST

Hi All,
I'm new here, and pretty new to houseplants. All my plant experience has always been outdoors.
I have a loft now, with no outdoor space so recently started collecting houseplants. It's already an obsession.

Today I went to a great nursery and picked up this plant. The guys there said it was a type of begonia. After researching a bit, it looks like a cucumber to me. LOL.
Still, it's big and really pretty, but while I was admiring it I noticed little specks on the underside of the leaves and on the stems.
I KNOW I've seen this before, but I can't remember what it is.

Can you guys help me figure out what this plant is, and what's going on with it.
I have it quarantined in the bathroom for now.

Looking forward to spending lots of time on here.
-James
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May 31, 2020 9:43 AM CST
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Welcome! Your plant is a Cissus, commonly called Grape Ivy. They were popular many years ago, bu aret not particularly hardy and subject to a variety of pests and diseases, so they are not often sold anymore.

If you are finding those black specks on more than a couple of leaves that can be removed, I suggest you return the plant. One has to question the quality of that nursery if they thought your plant is a Begonia and are selling it in that condition.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at wcreed@HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
Last edited by WillC May 31, 2020 9:43 AM Icon for preview
Avatar for jamesmcdowell
Jun 1, 2020 7:32 AM CST

Thanks for your input.
The specks were on quite a few leaves. I took it back to the nursery and they said the plant excretes some sugars naturally and I could wipe it off. They still said it was a cucumber begonia??
I opted to return it just to be cautious.
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Jun 1, 2020 8:20 AM CST
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
It's good that you returned it. The white crystalline specks are secreted by the plant. The black specks are something else. Be cautious about any advice dispensed by that nursery! Thumbs down
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at wcreed@HorticulturalHelp.com
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
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Jun 3, 2020 5:29 AM CST
Name: Sally
central Maryland (Zone 7b)
Let's all play ukulele
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
Your best success will come from choosing plants for the light you have, and most of the time its less than people think. Pothos (Epipremnum) is very common, has a similar form to this, and does well in most homes. But if you wish to describe your situation further, Will and others can suggest more.

For fun I tried googling "cucumber begonia" and got no results for such a plant.

Be aware plant nurseries often have untrained staff, just staff willing to water for hours on end and do a lot of labor. And many plant selections I find at the big box are best for very bright light that few people have. You do better being an educated consumer.
Plant it and they will come.
Avatar for Anfo1606
Jun 3, 2020 8:29 PM CST

Hello!
I would like to know if maybe with this photos you can tell me if this are soil mites or root Aphids. I have 5 plants at this moment with those bugs and not sure what to do!

Any help will be appreciate !

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Avatar for jamesmcdowell
Jun 8, 2020 3:20 PM CST

@SallyG thanks for your feedback. I agree being an educated consumer is important. This particular nursery has a great reputation and an impressive greenhouse. The employees even have a fenced area where they keep their private collection of interesting tropicals. Still, all the plants I have are healthy and thriving and I didn't want to introduce any headaches.

Fortunately, I live in a converted warehouse with 10' windows, so I have a great range of available light. Thumbs up
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Jun 8, 2020 3:44 PM CST
Name: Sally
central Maryland (Zone 7b)
Let's all play ukulele
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
james- I would love to have such windows. and sounds like a good nursery.. Hurray! for your plants
Plant it and they will come.
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