Ask a Question forum: Plant dying?

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Name: Melissa
Paradise, CA (Zone 9b)
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msandsm
Oct 1, 2017 5:17 PM CST
Hi - I have a plant (unfortunately I've forgotten the name and didn't enter it into my plant list, but I'm sure someone will recognize it) that is gradually turning yellow and seems to be dying (see photos). One trunk has already died; I cut it off. I took the plant to my local nursery, but unfortunately talked to a man who doesn't really know plants (maybe he works in the office?). He told me to fertilize it, even though I had fertilized it two weeks prior with Master Bloom 2-10-10. I didn't follow his advice. It was in morning sun, afternoon shade, but once it started looking sickly I moved it to full sun. Maybe I should have moved it to full shade?
I appreciate the help anyone is willing to offer. I really like this little tree and don't want to lose it!
Thumb of 2017-10-01/msandsm/d86575
Thumb of 2017-10-01/msandsm/c5e773

Melissa
=^..^=
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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dyzzypyxxy
Oct 1, 2017 6:39 PM CST
I may be completely off base here but my first thought on the ID on this plant was an Amorphophallus. In that case, it would be going dormant now, so nothing to do about it at the moment except let it go to sleep, keep it cool and slightly moist through the winter, and set it back out into the morning sun/afternoon shade location in the springtime.

It is a large bulb that blooms in the spring (large, stinky flower) then puts up those large beautiful stems of foliage that last through the summer. Sound familiar?

Btw, it's almost always a bad idea to fertilize a plant that seems to be under stress. Often it will accellerate the decline of the plant rather than help it.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Melissa
Paradise, CA (Zone 9b)
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msandsm
Oct 1, 2017 7:54 PM CST
Elaine ~ thanks. That's exactly what it is - I remember now. When I purchased it about 3 months ago, they never told me it went dormant; I wish now that I hadn't cut off the trunk that seemed dead. I do remember that they told me about the stinky flower. I love the spotted trunk - it's why I bought it. And I didn't follow the nurseryman's advice about fertilizing it. It had been in fine shape when I'd fertilized it two weeks earlier, and I knew that fertilizer would be the last thing it needed. I'm going to add it to my plant list now so that I won't forget again!
Melissa
Thank You! Thank You!
Melissa
=^..^=
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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dyzzypyxxy
Oct 1, 2017 8:20 PM CST
You're welcome, Melissa. And you absolutely should cut off the stems once they are dead. It will make new ones when it finishes blooming next spring. Bigger and better.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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DaisyI
Oct 1, 2017 8:21 PM CST
What a great plant! Lovey dubby
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

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Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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dyzzypyxxy
Oct 1, 2017 8:27 PM CST
Yeah, except for the stinky flowers - they smell like a dead body but luckily only last a couple of days. Our orchid buddy Jim has some outdoors in his garden and he says when they're blooming, flies and possums come around looking for the corpses.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Melissa
Paradise, CA (Zone 9b)
Image
msandsm
Oct 2, 2017 12:35 AM CST
dyzzypyxxy said:You're welcome, Melissa. And you absolutely should cut off the stems once they are dead. It will make new ones when it finishes blooming next spring. Bigger and better.


I'm a little confused, Elaine. You say to cut off the stems when they're dead. Is that different than the stems and leaves going dormant? Because then you say it will make new ones *after* it flowers. Wouldn't the flower need a stem to grow on? Confused Thank You!
Melissa
=^..^=
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
dyzzypyxxy
Oct 2, 2017 7:58 AM CST
No, the stem you have will die off pretty soon. That's why it's looking sort of ratty now. You will have nothing at all to look at over the winter. Keep the plant as cool as you can (but not freezing) and just give it a little bit of water maybe every week or two so it doesn't dry out completely.

The new flower will come up from the bulb, underground. Then after the flower is finished, the bulb will put up a whole new stem of beautiful foliage for you. That foliage is what is building up the bulb to continue the life cycle.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Melissa
Paradise, CA (Zone 9b)
Image
msandsm
Oct 2, 2017 12:37 PM CST
Thanks for all the info. I'm confident it will make it through the winter, and look forward to what it will do in the spring!
Thank You!
Melissa
=^..^=

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