Houseplants forum: kalanchoe with white powdery mildew

Views: 648, Replies: 6 » Jump to the end
Name: Marcia Kuma
Buffalo NY
Owllady
Feb 4, 2018 10:03 AM CST
Hi. This is not a good photo but am still figuring out this camera. This is a leaf from my kalanchoe, unknown variety, bought at a fundraiser. Those are a couple stems from the same plant on the left side. When I moved to my current apartment, the poor plant immediately starting dropping leaves and developed this mildew/mold. It never had these problems in my previous apartment.

I thought kalanchoes were not too difficult to grow as houseplants and to have them rebloom, but after a bit of research, it seems they may need more care than I expected? This plant also got leggy but I'm afraid to trim anything off after a heavy leaf loss. In my other apartment, I did trim off new growth, but only got more stems and leaves without blooms.

The plant seems to be putting out a few new leaves and the mildew/mold seems to have stabilized, but since this plant never had mildew/mold before, I'm worried it may not survive. Is there anything I can do for it?
Thumb of 2018-02-04/Owllady/13e399

Name: Marcia Kuma
Buffalo NY
Owllady
Feb 4, 2018 10:10 AM CST
Here are a couple more photos, maybe these will help.

Thumb of 2018-02-04/Owllady/0bc868
Thumb of 2018-02-04/Owllady/c81a78

Thanks for any suggestions!
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Herbs Annuals Hummingbirder Butterflies Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Birds Cat Lover Houseplants Garden Sages
Image
gasrocks
Feb 4, 2018 10:29 AM CST
Mealy bugs !! Spray then with some rubbing alcohol. Also drench the soil. Gene
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
Image
WillC
Feb 4, 2018 1:28 PM CST
Yes, a serious mealybug infestation. If you purchased this plant under the assumption it would be easy to care for and rebloom for you, I suggest you may want to give it up now.

If you decide to keep it, I recommend that you prune back all of the stems to a height of about 2 inches above the soil. That will remove all of the leaves and most of the mealybugs. Then, it will be fairly easy to spray the remaining stem stubs and the surface of the soil and pot with a spray solution of 5 parts water, 1 part alcohol and a squirt of liquid soap. Be very thorough.

Once it is pruned back and treated for the mealybugs, move it to a sunny windowsill and water it only when the top inch of soil feels very dry. You should soon get healthy new leaf growth. You may not get flowers until the roots have largely filled to the pot with roots and that may take a long time. In the interim, keep it on the dry side and pruned back as soon as stems get leggy.

If this is more than you bargained for, toss it and look for a ZZ Plant that is much easier.
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: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL 🌵🌷⚘🌹🌻 (Zone 8b)
Houseplants Organic Gardener Composter Region: Gulf Coast Miniature Gardening Native Plants and Wildflowers
Tropicals Butterflies Garden Sages Cactus and Succulents Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
purpleinopp
Feb 6, 2018 3:30 PM CST
Mealybug infestation notwithstanding, I don't find Kals to be difficult if one has an E/S/W window to put it near, where the sun can shine on it for at least an hour per day. That should be enough to cause blooms to form. K. blossfeldiana is a short-day bloomer, (healthy) individuals are inspired to form buds when nights are longer than days.

Most of my plants blooming this season are cuttings that were cut & stuck in pots about 2-3 months ago to reduce their height. Doubt any of them have filled their pots with roots yet.

When I've seen these for sale, they were with the spring plants like Easter lilies, shamrocks, cyclamens, already-blooming bulbs in general. About time to start looking for them in earnest.

A current discussion about blooming plants:
https://garden.org/thread/go/7...
👀😁😂 - SMILE! -☺😎☻☮👌✌∞☯🐣🐦🐔🐝🍯🐾
The less I interfere, the more balance mother nature provides.
👒🎄👣🏡🍃🍂🌾🌿🍁❦❧ 🍃🍁🍂🌾🌻🌸🌼🌹🌽❀☀🌺
☕👓 The only way to succeed is to try.
Name: Marcia Kuma
Buffalo NY
Owllady
Feb 10, 2018 10:13 PM CST
Mealybugs?! I never thought of that. The plant seems to have a few new leaves, and I can't bear to give up on plants if they're showing any life, so I'll persevere with this one. Except that it's in a north window; the west window I have gets hardly any direct sun in winter, even if it's clear. Would moving it to that window make any difference at all?

I have got some rubbing alcohol. I'll give that a try.

Where could this mealybug infestation have come from? It appeared within days of my moving into this apartment. Could it have lain dormant in an empty apartment?

On the bright side, I've had a blue jay, a couple downy woodpeckers, and a batch of cheery chickadees at my suet feeder Smiling
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
Image
WillC
Feb 11, 2018 10:56 AM CST
Pruning back your plant will not kill or damage it. If anything, it will rejuvenate it and make it easier to control the mealybug infestation. Never be afraid to prune off healthy leaves.

Plant pests are often present on plants but dormant and/or in such small numbers that they go unobserved. However, when they sense that the plant is under stress due to inadequate light or improper watering, they start to reproduce and seem to appear overnight.

Do whatever you can to give it as much sunlight as possible.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Houseplants forum
You must first create a username and login before you can reply to this thread.

Member Login:

Username:

Password:

[ Join now ]

Today's site banner is by dirtdorphins and is called "Cedrus atlantica"