Ask a Question forum: Mother of thousands

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UK
SpamAllan
Mar 18, 2018 9:48 AM CST
Hey all,

I have read a few threads on here about Mother of Thousands so apologies for another but I still can't quite get my head around it.

The leaves on my plant have been going very limp (don't feel fleshy at all) and then drop off. Hopefully you can see in the picture there are none lower down the stem. The top 4 leaves feel okay though and a couple of them are new growth over winter. I originally thought it was due to overwatering so I have really cut that back!

The plant is kept in a window that faces east, here in the UK. I live in a basement flat so there aren't any other options for where it could go. This means it is kept in amongst a lot of other plants but also with the radiator (!).

Is something wrong with it? Or is it just adjusting to winter?

Thanks,
Sam

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Name: Will Creed
NYC
Professional indoor plant consultan
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WillC
Mar 18, 2018 11:05 AM CST
You are probably letting it get too dry. Water it thoroughly until some water trickles through the drain hole as soon as the top half-inch of soil feels dry.

You do have a light problem, as well. It is the light that will determine how thick and sturdy the stem will be. It will continue to grow ever taller and become more top heavy in the future. At some point, you will have to prune it back. Pruning a healthy stem will not harm the plant in any way, but it will shorten it.
Will Creed
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Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
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Baja_Costero
Mar 18, 2018 11:41 AM CST
I can't speak about the condition of the plant, but do be careful if you're putting the plant on or near a radiator. With an unglazed clay pot like that, the evaporation will speed up a lot, because the water can exit through the sides of the container as well as the top. In warm, dry conditions (like on top of or near a radiator) the evaporation will be quite fast, so you may have to compensate by watering more often. Try to water well when the soil is going dry at depth, and then wait until the soil is dry to water again. The clay pot combined with the radiator situation may mean the watering interval is a week or less, but the only way to know for sure is to inspect the soil and see how much water it is retaining. If there's a way you can avoid putting the plant on the radiator, try to do that. And try to provide as much light as possible given the limitations of your space.
[Last edited by Baja_Costero - Mar 18, 2018 11:42 AM (+)]
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Name: Rick Moses
Derwood, MD (Zone 7b)
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RickM
Mar 18, 2018 11:46 AM CST
Sam,

Something else you can do is set the pot into a glass baking dish. When you see that the glass dish is dry, add some water. Not only will this help with the excessive drying from the radiator, but it will also add some humidity to the surrounding air.
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Mar 18, 2018 4:23 PM CST
I hope there is a saucer under the pot in that glass baking dish. Letting a succulent sit in water all the time will result in root rot.
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UK
SpamAllan
Mar 20, 2018 4:28 PM CST
Thanks for all the help guys! I gave it a good water and it's perked back up. I think I need to keep a very close eye on all my plants near the radiator then to make sure they have enough water. Hopefully it will be warm enough soon that the heating will go off!

Unfortunately I cant move them anywhere else as I only have one other window and it get very little light!

Will new growth sprout from the top of the stem if I cut it back?
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL 🌵🌷⚘🌹🌻 (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Mar 20, 2018 4:36 PM CST
Agree, getting too dry will cause older leaves to be lost prematurely (before the stem lignifies.) A pot this size should be easy to moisture-gauge by picking it up, and unglazed clay turns that lighter color when it has dried. There's no benefit in letting it go past the point of dryness, or even total dryness, in the porous, breathable clay pot.

Various species are called mother-of. Yours looks like K./B. laetivirens, specifically.
Mother of Thousands (Kalanchoe laetivirens)

If you do decide to trim in the future, stick the top in the pot, or another pot. It will take root and continue growing as if nothing had happened, even if blooming @ the time. The more tips you have @ the time that blooming starts, the more blooms you can have.
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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
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purpleinopp
Mar 20, 2018 4:37 PM CST
Yes, the stump will grow 2-4 new tips/stems.
👀😁😂 - SMILE! -☺😎☻☮👌✌∞☯🐣🐦🐔🐝🍯🐾
The less I interfere, the more balance mother nature provides.
👒🎄👣🏡🍃🍂🌾🌿🍁❦❧ 🍃🍁🍂🌾🌻🌸🌼🌹🌽❀☀🌺
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