Adeniums forum: Help with desert rose?

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Name: Terri Osipov
Rome, Georgia (Zone 7b)
Every day in the yard is a GOOD day
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IJsbrandtGA
Jun 7, 2018 10:50 AM CST
I need help with this plant that was purchased at Walmart and gifted to me several years ago. When I received it, the tag called it a desert rose. I know there are many plants that have this common name and I don't have the horticultural name for this guy. Hopefully someone can tell me what it truly is.

Now I need help saving its life! I can't seem to get the watering schedule down properly. It seems to suffer from over watering and under watering both. Can someone tell me more about this plant so that I can get it fixed and back in good health? It was so pretty when I 1st received it but I'm afraid I'm losing it for good right now.

Thank you all so much for your help, Terri


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"Speak to the Earth and it shall teach Thee" Job 12:8
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Cactus and Succulents Plays in the sandbox Greenhouse Sempervivums
Bromeliad Adeniums Avid Green Pages Reviewer Brugmansias Garden Ideas: Level 1 Tropicals
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plantmanager
Jun 7, 2018 11:04 AM CST
Hi Terri,
It's an Adenium and they are called the Desert Rose. If it were mine I'd remove it from the pot to check the roots to see if they are rotted. Then I'd repot it in a fresh well draining mix. I use cactus mix with 50% more perlite or pumice added. Keep your pot wide, but not deep.

They love to go outside. First put them in shade and gradually move them to full sun. They will leaf out and bloom well in full sun. When it's winter you can let it go dormant, and put it in inside or in a garage with very little water. In summer it can use a lot of water. Many of us have to water ours daily. Watch for insects. Mine are prone to mealy bugs.

I think many people treat them as a cactus, but they like to be treated as a tropical, water loving plant.
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
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tarev
Jun 7, 2018 11:15 AM CST
Hello Terri! Glad you found the Adenium forum!

Yes it is an Adenium. Looking at your plant, I think the plant is still partially dormant. The thing with Adeniums, it manifests dormancy differently. It may drop all its leaves, or it may hold on to the last few remaining leaves or blooms. You will know it is still dormant if you have not seen any new leaf forming at all. And that is what I see in your plant right now.

Try to feel the caudex, that bulbous trunk, if it is still rock solid, then it is okay. What you can do is position this plant outdoors in a part sun/part shade area, so it can acclimate to your outdoor conditions. If it is raining hard on your side, put it in a protected spot for now, but in a spot where it still gets access to bright light.

When the plant is fully awake, with new leaves forming, it can be watered like any tropical plant, It actually loves water but you have to make sure the media is very well draining. As you can see it holds water in its caudex, and that caudex continues on growing too below soil level, so it hates sitting too long in a very wet media. When it is fully awake, it can take on direct sun very well, the hotter the better. It is one of my few succulents here that enjoys our very dry 100F and higher temps, but it has to be acclimated to that condition first gradually.
Name: Sondra
NE Houston, Texas (Zone 9a)
Cat Lover Region: Texas Bulbs Cactus and Succulents
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SALL20
Jun 7, 2018 11:52 AM CST
Thanks for the info about watering. I didn't think they liked water, so I may be watering mine too little. We do get rain frequently and have high humidity, so I guess that has helped it. It is in full sun and seems to be doing well.
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
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tarev
Jun 8, 2018 9:24 AM CST
I like sharing this link that shows pictures and explanations about Adenium's dormancy.

It is very informative and will help in understanding why we need to lessen or stop watering during its dormancy period. http://adenium.tucsoncactus.or...
Name: Terri Osipov
Rome, Georgia (Zone 7b)
Every day in the yard is a GOOD day
Dog Lover Bee Lover
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IJsbrandtGA
Jun 8, 2018 3:10 PM CST
tarev said:I like sharing this link that shows pictures and explanations about Adenium's dormancy.

It is very informative and will help in understanding why we need to lessen or stop watering during its dormancy period. http://adenium.tucsoncactus.or...


Thank you so much for such Helpful information. I pulled him out of his pot and I am disappointed to see some mildewy looking soil ( I removed) and that 3 of the roots are rotted. I have pointed them out in the picture. How do I proceed at this point? Do I let them dry out or…? The caudex ia still firm as well as some other roots.

Thank You! Terri


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"Speak to the Earth and it shall teach Thee" Job 12:8
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Cat Lover Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Region: California Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all!
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tarev
Jun 8, 2018 5:39 PM CST
Thanks for the photo of the root area. Just leave it out and let the root area dry out some more. may take a week or more for it to dry out properly. You can cut off some of the smaller roots especially if it looks dead. Then you will have to let it callus some more before you repot in new media. Here is a nice thread I saw on another site complete with pictures on what that grower did to do root pruning. You may not get blooms this season though, but you will be able to save your plant. Also be prepared to use a new batch of well draining media. That is also part of the problem if your media is staying too wet which rots the root, so I use cacti mix and I add more pumice to it. I also have some compost here which I mix in.

Click on this link to see the root pruning: http://forum.bcss.org.uk/viewt...
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Cat Lover Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Region: California Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all!
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tarev
Jun 8, 2018 5:45 PM CST
Thanks for the photo of the root area. Just leave it out and let the root area dry out some more. may take a week or more for it to dry out properly. You can cut off some of the smaller roots especially if it looks dead. Then you will have to let it callus some more before you repot in new media. Here is a nice thread I saw on another site complete with pictures on what that grower did to do root pruning. You may not get blooms this season though, but you will be able to save your plant. Also be prepared to use a new batch of well draining media. That is also part of the problem if your media is staying too wet which rots the root, so I use cacti mix and I add more pumice to it. I also have some compost here which I mix in.

Click on this link to see the root pruning: http://forum.bcss.org.uk/viewt...

Btw, remember not to water right away after repot, wait for about a week, to help the roots recover some more. The caudex has enough moisture in it to sustain the plant in the meantime. Position the plant outdoors in part sun/shade, no direct sun, no fertilizers yet, so it can recover nicely. Your timing for root trimming and repot is good, it is going into wake up time for the plant. If it gets rainy on your side, protect it in a covered area with bright light access as it continues to recover.
Name: Terri Osipov
Rome, Georgia (Zone 7b)
Every day in the yard is a GOOD day
Dog Lover Bee Lover
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IJsbrandtGA
Jun 10, 2018 1:58 PM CST
@tarev I noticed that 1 of the stems is rotted at the bottom but the tip seems to be OK if not growing something new. Should I cut the stem off where it meets the caudex and then cut the rot off and replant the remainder of the stem or?????? Thank you Thank You!
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"Speak to the Earth and it shall teach Thee" Job 12:8
[Last edited by IJsbrandtGA - Jun 10, 2018 1:58 PM (+)]
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Cat Lover Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Region: California Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all!
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tarev
Jun 11, 2018 11:18 AM CST
Hi Terri, you can cut off that good branch. It may leak some of its latex, so just wash that end of with water, shake off excess water, dab some cinnamon lightly on the cut end and let it dry off and callus. Please use gloves when you do the cut, to protect yourself from the latex.

It may take awhile for it to recover, since it really is rather young and has less energy, but it is doable. You will have to use the smallest container since it has no roots, and it does take a while to form new roots. Just got to be very patient. You can then stick it to a well draining media and position in part shade for now. The only downside to this, cuttings do not form a caudex. It may fatten a bit that stem, but not to the extent of forming those engorged caudex.

Better to cut off that totally rotted part so the rot does not spread to the rest of the plant. In time it will do new branches anyways, so at least you are able to save and protect the mother plant. It will still have two other branches. Good luck!
Name: Terri Osipov
Rome, Georgia (Zone 7b)
Every day in the yard is a GOOD day
Dog Lover Bee Lover
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IJsbrandtGA
Jun 12, 2018 8:16 AM CST
@tarev

Ok done! The rotted parts are drying but still damp. I have the urge to "clean up" the rot wounds once they are dry. Is that a good idea or no? I was thinking of cutting the dried papery and stringy part back to the caudex.

Thanks so much for walking me through this. I really want it to be a beautiful success someday Crossing Fingers! Thumbs up
"Speak to the Earth and it shall teach Thee" Job 12:8
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Cat Lover Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Region: California Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all!
Composter Cactus and Succulents Dragonflies Hummingbirder Amaryllis Container Gardener
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tarev
Jun 12, 2018 10:48 AM CST
Terri, just let it callus off. I know, it is rather hard to leave that plant alone, but that is what it needs. Pretty much you have removed the rotting part, so now got to allow it to dry off completely. Patience will be your friend. It really takes awhile, like weeks, before you can any sign of new growth.

Your weather is much different than ours, you got more rain and humidity than we do, so be very careful that the plant does not get drenched while in recovery mode.

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