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Thread: Nepenthes Root Nodules? Fungus?

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    Christian James Ambanja's Avatar
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    Nepenthes Root Nodules? Fungus?

    Decided it was time to repot a large x Red Leopard that was overwhelming the chili pepper plant it was growing up. It also needed to be moved because of low light levels on that side of the house this time of year. When I removed its pot (which was inside a much larger pot containing the chili plant) I noticed it had outgrown the pot completely, venturing into the dirt and mulch of the chili plant. It had some very weird looking root nodules for a nepenthes, and there were also some white fungal sites around the inside of the pot (they look like perlite, but aren't in the 4th and 5th picture). Any thoughts on what either could be? The plant has been growing incredibly well, actually the best of all my plants.










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    kulamauiman's Avatar
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    white things look like root mealybugs. residual wax. I hope the root with the root nodules can be traced back to the pepper plant. looks like root knot nematode galls to me. Peppers tend to be very susceptible depending on cultivare. I have no information on susceptibility of nepenthes to root knot nematodes

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    mass's Avatar
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    almost looks like some sort of mildew..

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    richjam1986's Avatar
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    I think root mealy bugs are your best bet for the white things...

    Not sure about the root nodules, but I have a couple different ideas to add, in addition to what has already been proposed.
    The root nodules could be bad, but then again it could be good: micorhizal fungi species can infect almost any plant and they form a symbiotic relationship with the plant, helping the plant draw in moisture and nutrients while being fed sugars by the plant. Both organisms benefit. (Maybe this is why it is one of your best looking plants... who knows?). You could try disecting one of them to see what's in it. Unfortunately I don't know exactly how you would tell what caused the nodule, unless you see bug larvae inside it or something.

    There are also symbiotic bacteria that can form nodules on the roots (if this is the case, then the nodule should be pink or reddish when you cut it open)

    I think I read somewhere that a few Nepenthes species have also been known to make small tubers to store water and energy, in addition to their typical fiberous roots. Could possibly be the case here?

    I must add that you have some awesome looking Nepenthes vines there! Where do you live to be growing them so well outside ?
    Da' mishu
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    My Growlist: http://www.terraforums.com/forums/sh...29#post1089429

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    richjam1986's Avatar
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    I actually just looked up about Nepenthes species with tubers (http://carnivorousockhom.blogspot.co...ber-roots.html), and niether of the parent species of N. 'red leopord' are known to have tubers, so my last thought from my previous post is out the window, most likely.
    Da' mishu
    Provo, Utah.

    My Growlist: http://www.terraforums.com/forums/sh...29#post1089429

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    Christian James Ambanja's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info guys, I probably should've taken some more time to really inspect it and figure out what was going on. I'm almost certain all are roots from the Red Leopard and not the chili plant. I didn't see any mealy bugs, but it sure does look like residuals from them. I live in Ninole, Hawaii on the Big Island at about 1000' elevation. The plant has been living outside on the North side of our yurt for the last 8 months, which provided a good amount of sun during the summer, but not enough lately - hence a drop in pitcher production and tons of flowers, I've cut 8 or 9 off in the last couple of months. It is also is extremely windy where the plant was. The peristomes and lids of the pitchers would dry out really quickly, but keep capturing tons of prey - moths, wasps, roaches, crickets, and a good number of lizards. Another thing that might have caused the nodules is that I most likely spread IMO (Indigenous Micro Organisms) in the Chili Plant.

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    Jimmy's Avatar
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    Hey,

    It's been a while since I've posted but I thought I'd jump in here so we don't make an issue where there isn't one.

    Those thickened, tannish roots are natural, and the nodules are either filled with beneficial fungus or are just caused by being stunted with little room to expand length-wise. I've observed some of the same root tendencies in my own Nepenthes... The nodules look just like the root callus in a N. Miranda cutting I have in water.

    Don't worry about it, your plant is extra healthy. Thanks for posting this! It's alsways fun to see good growing and the oddities it produces.

    -Jimmy
    "I'm just a scientist without the proper documentation."

    My Growlist: http://www.terraforums.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=113724

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    Christian James Ambanja's Avatar
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    Thanks Jimmy! I'm thinking the stunting probably had big part to play since all the enlarged nodules are near the bottom drainage hole. I found the sections of root that broke off while replanting it, and cut them open, looks just like a hard thick root, nothing special.

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