Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Random plant event: Aglaonema x 'Stars' recovery

This plant and I have had a long, torturous, and somewhat mutually abusive history together, but after a year of that, it looks like maybe things are finally turning around again. The short version of the story is that when I bought the plant, it was in very wet, heavy soil, which had already started to rot out the roots. When I eventually clued in to the fact that the reason it wasn't growing well was because its roots were rotting out, I cut off the tops of the stalks and tried to root them in water.

Rooting in water worked, but then when I transferred them to soil, I put them in pots that were too big, and soil that was too heavy, and began the whole rotting out process again, because I am stupid, or excessively optimistic, or both.

The roots, meanwhile, got potted back up in their original container, with lighter, better soil, and then did absolutely nothing for a very long time. I actually thought I'd probably killed them, but again -- optimistic and stupid.

The roots started to resprout a couple months ago, but only in the last little while have new shoots started to come up all over the pot (the above picture is slightly dated; there are ten growing tips currently going, instead of the six or seven you can see above). I don't know if I'm likely to get a plant that's as full as the original one, but at this point, it's been a year and a few weeks of watching it go steadily downhill, so I'm not going to complain, whatever I get. The tops did eventually get rooted okay in 4-inch pots, and while they're not amazing, they're alive:

I like rescuing the occasional rescue plant from Lowe's or wherever, but it's not very often that I rescue a plant from myself.

See also plant profile: Goody Two-Shoes (Aglaonema spp.)


Tracy said...

Good Luck, and kudos for hanging in there so long, I would have given up months ago. Space is at a premium in my house, so my plants better thrive or In the summer, if I don't like a particular plant, I put it outside, if it makes it through the summer, it comes back in. If not, Buh Bye.

waterroots said...

That's a really nice looking plant, so I guess it's worth the added effort. I personally love, love, love Aglaonemas, and tend to give them a little extra TLC. I just wish we had more types available locally...sigh...

Sheila said...

That is a particularly lovely ag, certainly one worth rescuing. I used to try to rescue them, but I also have space issues, so I now I rarely bother.

I've never had a root-rotted one grow back in full and lush. I have done cuttings and crammed a bazillion of them in a pot and made a nice looking plant, however.