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Thread: I think my brand new neps are dying

  1. #1

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    I'll try to get some pics later today when I'm home from work.

    Friday, my plants finally arrive via mail. The USPS beat the hell out of them and the pots were all cracked, so I immediately transplanted them into some 6" pots. I can't find ANY unfertilized perlite or silica non-play sand around here, so I was forced to use straight peet as I was finally able to find some of that un-fertilized.

    The plants remained in their original soil. I simply filled the new pot, dumped the old pot out, soil and plant as one, and placed it right into the new soil. I covered the top with LFS.

    Many of the plants were in pretty bad shape, but have perked up, especially the VFTs. However, my 2 neps are dying.

    They are dying from the top down. After the first night, the leaves were withered. After a couple more nights, they've started to turn yellow. However, the leaves on the bottom seem to be completely fine. There are no bugs or fertilizers. They are being watered with rain water and let drip out of the bottom.

    These plants are kept on my balcony railing. They receive full sun since it is a south west facing balcony. The first night, it got down to 40-50F. Since then, it's always been 70-80F.

    They came unlabeled, but they can only be 1 of 2 species. Either Nepenthes rafflesiana or Nepenthes ventricosa or 1 of each. The pitchers seem to look similar to Nepenthes rafflesiana, but it's hard to tell since they're so young and small. 1 Plant has roughly 3/4-1 inch pitchers. The other has perhaps 1/4 inch pitchers. The smaller one is definately in much worse condition then the larger one.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Tony Paroubek's Avatar
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    Sounds like moisture stress, and possible sun overexposure. Probably a combination of factors. If they got tossed around the box roots might have been damaged. Also depending on how they were grown by the supplier and the conditions they are put into at their new home, they MAY droop and wilt anywhere from moderately to death threatingly in the span of a few hours. I find lowland Nepenthes even more susceptible as they usually have larger softer leaves than highland Nepenthes.

    Putting them where they are getting full sun immediately is probably not a good plan. Whenever you get new acquisitions you need to acclimate them to your grow area. Because of your description of the wilting I would place them in ziplock baggies either sealed or with a small opening at the top. The increased humidity will help them recover, if it's not too late. Be sure to place the baggies in bright indirect light as sun would quickly bake them. Also watch for fungal problems while in the bags. The high humidity and lack of airmovement can bring on other problems!

    For future reference different plants will respond differently and plants from different suppliers will respond differently. You need to monitor new plants and adjust their care depending on how they react after you receive them. You may find that in some cases a plant just adjusts right from the day it arrives while others need to be babied for a while.

    Some pics would be helpful as well.

    Tony
    Is that a Nepenthes in your pocket or you just happy to see me?

  3. #3

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    Here are the pics.

    This is the poor little guy that I don't think will make it.


    This is the big guy,


    And the lower leaves on the big guy.


    In case it is humidity, here's what I've done.


    In case you need to know, the big one is still flexible despite the brown look. The small one is a bit cripsy, but still doesn't quite crumble when pinched.

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    Tony Paroubek's Avatar
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    Thanks for the pics. Looks more like sun damage than humidity. Looking closely at the tiny emerging leaves on the larger plant, that were down below the tops of the bigger leaves, they look like they are not wilted. Which is a good sign. The little one is certainly in bad shape but it might recover.

    Was the sun out when you first put them in their new location? I am curious if they were looking ok before the sun hit them.

    The baggies will help a bit but you need to watch that the damaged leaves don't start growing fungus. You could cut off any brown leaves. Try and leave the green though. When you start to see the new leaves emerging I would start removing the bag to give the plant some fresh air. Nice bright light but watch the sun during the middle of the day. You can eventually adjust Nepenthes to handle full sun all day but must be gradual. Leaves that are already formed will burn easier while new leaves that form will be adjusted.

    BTW they look like N. rafflesiana as best I can tell. Hope they didn't cost alot.. kinda small [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile_h_32.gif[/img]

    Tony
    Is that a Nepenthes in your pocket or you just happy to see me?

  5. #5

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    Nope, got them at ********** so they were cheap.

    They wilted overnight, in the dark. They were fine when I removed them from the shipping box. I removed the plastic cover and repotted them. They received no sunlight that day as I unpacked them when I got home from work.

    I'm wondering if the lower leaves received more humidity since the upper leaves would trap the water down low.

    Of course, it could be a combo of both. They wilted but did not turn yellow/brown until they received a full day's sun.

    So, I should cut off the brown leaves although they are still soft and moist?

    Also, if the plants are on the floor of my balcony, the path of the sun and the moving shadow from the railing will only allow for maybe 2 hours of direct sunlight. Should that be OK?

    P.S. I know they're small, but I'm unaware of anyone that sells decent sized CPs. Everywhere I've been ships them in 3in pots.

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    Tony Paroubek's Avatar
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    If your uncertain about trimming then don't bother at this point. Well moisture stress does hit the softer newer leaves first. Does sound like a combination of problems if they got droopy even at night after removing from the packaging. Sunburn will also hit the uppermost leaves first as the lower ones are usually shaded by the higher ones.

    Maybe you can string up a little piece of fiberglass screen to break the sun a bit? That might be better than having full sun on the plants even if it is slowly traversing with shadows through the railing. Particularly if you keep them covered up yet. Direct sun will very quickly overheat even a partially closed grow chamber.

    Tony
    Is that a Nepenthes in your pocket or you just happy to see me?

  7. #7

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    so are they rafflesiana? i grow mine indoors and they do well for me comparing that i got mine for 3" @ time of purchace now its well over 6". or how about this, i think your mix is too compressed by the way it looks to me. tony, do you think he should "fluff it up" or airate it more?
    \"Nepenthes, the Devil's Cup\" - Santos
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  8. #8
    Tony Paroubek's Avatar
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    Well I would use a chunkier lighter mix. But up in my neck of the woods a heavy peat mix or pure LFS just holds too much moisture. I am a fan of perlite, sphagnum and some chunky stuff... fir bark, coconut husk chips, lava rock, charcoal ... something like that. With maybe just a handful of peat tossed in. For an all sphagnum or high amount of sphagnum though you are correct not to compress it too much when pushing it into the pot. That eliminates it's ability to hold air as well as water.
    Is that a Nepenthes in your pocket or you just happy to see me?

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