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Thread: Basal size compared to parent plant?

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    happy-gnome's Avatar
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    Basal size compared to parent plant?

    G'day everyone, hope you are all well

    Just wondering, when your plants form basals, do the basals usually outgrow the parent plant in size? I had never thought about it until recently when my largest ventricosa put out a basal which, after very few leaves, is already far larger than the parent plant at the same height. I assume it is because it has a much larger root system than a small, young plant would have access to?

    It is an exciting thought, as most of the larger plants I own suffered set backs due to transportation. It would be nice to think that they will form new plants which will not suffer the same problem and which will grow to a better size.

    Just my musings

    John

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    Katherine
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    I find that it does happen, I think it may be because for a time, while the basal is getting started, the parent plant donates a lot of it's energy to the basal. So instea dof the parent plant using the energy it makes to grow bigger, it sends a little bit to the basal, and so the basal is effectively getting two lots of energy, one from the parent, one lot that it makes itself with it's own leaves.
    I don't know if that's true, but it's my theory.
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    Let's positive thinking! seedjar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by happy-gnome View Post
    I assume it is because it has a much larger root system than a small, young plant would have access to?
    Yes, I think this is very true. In my experience, basals formed by healthy plants always outgrow the parent vine. There are exceptions, of course, for basals grown by dying vines and the like. But all of my Neps that have spontaneously sprouted new leaders have grown rapidly afterwards - I suspect you're right about the value of a mature root system. Even though you can't propagate them by root cutting, I've come to think that Neps are very much a "live in the roots" type of plant. The biggest gains I've ever made with my plants have come from pampering the roots with airy potting mixes and net pots.
    I don't think you should worry about your plants that have been afflicted. I once received a little, spindly Nep that was badly etiolated and continued to grow weak and scrawny even after switching to higher lights. It had a seven-inch stem, which was about a half a centimeter wide and had gone woody since I got it, but after moving the plant into orchid mix the growing tip ballooned from two and three inch leaves to footlong leaves over the course of two months or so, and the stem past the woody part doubled or maybe even tripled in width. It's now one of my biggest plants and has sprouted a new stem from the middle of the initial spindly bit of etiolation, which is also quickly approaching footlong leaves. So there is hope! You just have to find what works.
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    Your one and only pest! Ant's Avatar
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    I must say that the basals are better then the parent vine. Every basal my ventricosa made was much thicker then the last, and the last basal I let live is making a flower with another basal peaking out of the soil.

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    Grey Moss's Avatar
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    Hope all of this is true for me, I have two truncata basals coming up.

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    Interesting. Well, I think then I shall leave the basal to grow unhindered and see how it goes. I'm impressed with your basal experience Ant, fingers crossed mine go that well.

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