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Denver, Colo (Zone 5b)
Jan 12, 2014 11:54 PM CST
|I am desperately trying to save this Hen and Chick from my wedding bouquet that was used from a friend's garden. I know nothing of plants and was told just to put it on potting soil and water every once and while. Evidently that was not correct, as it has now lost a lot of the under leaves (they got dry and crispy and fell off). The top leaves now have brown streaks through the middle of them. The leaves are still sturdy and firm (except for the dead ones). |
I live in Denver, Colo. This guy has been kept inside near a window, but out of direct sunlight. I was concerned that it was sitting in soil that didn't drain well as I had it in a bowl with no way to drain, so the pictures are after I took it out, rinsed the roots to get the soil off and let it sit on a paper towel to dry. That was earlier this afternoon.
Help I don't want to lose this little guy. Thanks!
Jan 13, 2014 1:48 AM CST
|Hello Jocelyn and Welcome!|
Looking at your photos, I wondered whether the center, where the new leaves grow from, is still intact and viable. It if is brown and no intact leaflet(s) are seen, the center may be damaged to the point where you will not get new growth. It looks like the other leaves that should be curling out have all curled down covering the roots? It looks like it hasn't been happy or been in shock.
I would pull any dead brown dry leaves that can be gently pulled off from the underside of the head. Then with your fingers gently hold the leaf tips from the bottom slightly up so that you can position the roots back into dry soil with good drainage (use cactus soil if you can or use potting soil amended with coarse sand or gravel to improve drainage). If the bent firm leaves prevent the roots from being buried then just rest the head on top of the soil and the roots will eventually move down into it. Spray with a water bottle to dampen the soil just a bit, not too much. Hopefully new leaves will emerge from the center as the outer bottom leaves age and die off. Don't forget to use container with drain hole.
The gouges on the leaves look like birds sampling the leaves or some sort of physical damage done by dropping or scraping? New leaves from center will take the place of the damaged leaves eventually when plant gets going again.
Jan 13, 2014 12:49 PM CST
|Your plant is in desperate need of better light.|
Denver, Colo (Zone 5b)
Jan 13, 2014 2:34 PM CST
|Thanks for the responses! This plant has only ever been inside so birds aren't an issue, and the plant has not had physical damage (I don't have kids and my husband doesn't touch the plant). I will try the new soil ideas and put it somewhere with more light.|
Jan 18, 2014 6:24 PM CST
|I agree with growtail and webesemps.|
Clean it up and put it in a protected area outside. Place on dry soil and mist lightly only when dry. It may still form roots and take off growing as the weather warms.
The leaves curling back to the stem/roots is from lack of sufficient light. Keep us updated on things go.
Jan 19, 2014 5:24 PM CST
|Hi Joscelyn, to ATP!|
I don't grow Hens and Chicks (Sempervivum) so I can't offer advice but I just wanted to link you to a great forum here on ATP specifically for these lovely plants: http://garden.org/forums/view/...
There are lots of hens and chicks listed in our database too: The Sempervivum Database
~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Jan 19, 2014 5:33 PM CST
|Joscelyn, I hope you find your way back here. And I just realized you are new to ATP. A great big to you.|
We would love to have you come on over to the Sempervivum Form. Thank you so much Marilyn for posting the links.
Maybe Joscelyn is busy looking at all the threads and sempervivum photos.