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    Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

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    default Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Sat 10 Oct 2009, 9:56 pm

    This a beautiful plant from the dry lands of East Africa & it doesn't like to get wet. We have had ours for 18mths & it has grown so much. Its display of flowers last summer was magnificent. Unfortunately during April/May of this year, we had several storms with torrential rain. The last of these storms caused flooding in our yard as the ground was so saturated it could not drain away. Even though we tried to keep the adenium out of the rain it still suffered from the effects of too much rain. Didn't realise this until a few months later when branches started withering at the ends & leaves dropped off.

    There was a damp, discoloured, spongy patch at the front of its caudex. This was where a bunch of the leaves shaded the area from the sun & a different positioning of its container allowed the sun to start drying this patch. It does seem to be working but it is a slow process. At least three branches withered at their tips & lost their leaves. This plants only grows leaves in a circle at the end of its branches.

    The grey patch on the caudex.



    Last edited by Joybells on Fri 30 Oct 2009, 10:28 am; edited 2 times in total
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 30 Oct 2009, 10:26 am

    The ends of the branches withered & dried up, eventually dropping off.

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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 30 Oct 2009, 10:27 am

    Leaf damage.

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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 30 Oct 2009, 10:28 am

    The caudex starting to recover, we hope. The sponginess has gone, so has the grey.

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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 30 Oct 2009, 10:31 am

    Here are some images of why we are fighting so hard to keep this plant in good health.

    From last year.



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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 30 Oct 2009, 10:35 am

    This year it had many more flowers. Wonder if this wore it out a little. It certainly needs repotting into a much larger pot. Wonder if we shall have room for it. :D





    Last edited by Joybells on Tue 01 Dec 2009, 2:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 30 Oct 2009, 10:37 am

    A newly opened flower.

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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Tue 01 Dec 2009, 2:12 pm

    Aaaaaaaaaaaarrrggghhh!!!!! Our poor adenium obesum is still looking poorly. Have repotted it & this time I put broken up pieces of styrofoam packing boxes at the bottom of its new container. This is supposed to help with drainage & if we have another flood it won't be sitting in the water with wet feet, as the layer of styrofoam will lift the plant above it. Saw the tip about styrofoam in info written by some Indonesian growers. They are real adenium fans.

    The aaargh is because I have just read a web article about the care of adenium obesums & it was recommended that you water your adenium obesum first before fertilising to prevent root burn. The writer said root burn causes the leaves to drop off!! :affraid: Well, I must say I have been guilty of the sin of fertilising my adenium obesum when its soil was dry. Didn't want to overwater it. :oops: :( The advice also said to water it in the morning to give the plant all day to soak up the water & to allow the excess to evaporate. Was going to give it a dose of magnesium sulphate or Epsom salts today, to help with leaf growth but shall have to wait until tomorrow. Will need to water it first. :roll: The article also said to encourage flowering, use a fertiliser which is high in phosphorous. Shall have to check & see if the one we use fits that bill. Just checked & found out that one of the two liquid fertilisers we have, does have a very good ratio of phosphorous. It is much better than the more expensive brand which has hardly any in it. Isn't that always the way. :roll: Glad I looked as now I know which one to use on the adenium obesum.

    One thing I was happy to read about, was that to help show off its oddly shaped roots, which are one of this wonderful plant"s great features, the plant should be slightly raised every time it is repotted. This helps to expose more of the roots each time. The reason I was happy to read this was because I had accidentally raised our plant about 2.5cms when it was repotted this time. Had been very nervous about this so am very relieved to see that this was ok. One thing I did notice about raising it was not only were some of its weird roots exposed but the area on the caudex which had concerned me was now raised above the soil & was hardly noticeable anymore. :)
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Sat 12 Dec 2009, 9:07 pm

    Still worried about this plant as it doesn't seem to be recovering at all. Has lost nearly all its leaves with no signs of new growth on its way. The only good thing is that the caudex & the branches are all still a, healthy looking, shiny grey/green colour. That is something I guess. Last summer it flowered & flowered, Was covered in them. Maybe it is having a rest. Hope so.
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Dawn on Mon 14 Dec 2009, 3:40 am

    I hope so too . I feel sure if the stem and the branches don't show signs of any rotting it will be ok.
    I don't know what is happening. I think that the most serious thing that could happen would be rot in my way of thinking
    The leaves going yellow could be a sign of burned roots.. But usually if I have had roots with fertiliser burn ( this has happened on my roses) they recovered. But they were not an adenium were they. Hoping for your adenium to show you some sign it is ok soon
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Mon 14 Dec 2009, 2:35 pm

    One thing that concerns me, Dawn, is that around the same time as it started showing signs of something really amiss, we had had some "cowboys" doing the pest control spraying. They may have sprayed it with insecticide or whatever. They were REALLY careless in their attitude. It would have come on top of all the rain stress it had been under. My fingers are well & truly crossed for this precious plant & my biggest hope is the, apparently, healthy condition of its caudex & branches.
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 4:02 pm

    This was heartening to see. This pic was taken about three weeks ago.

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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 4:03 pm

    Then a couple of weeks later.

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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 4:04 pm

    Eagel-eyed Bruiser spotted these as well.

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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 4:28 pm

    A week later & the larger leaves have grown quite a bit.

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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 4:29 pm

    So has one of the little leaf buds. I do believe these are all good signs.

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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Dawn on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 4:52 pm



    Yes it must have been resting I think.?
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 5:18 pm

    Probably has been having a bit of frest & recuperation. Every little sign of growth is a huge plus. The water damaged part of the caudex still looks yucky & some ants have gotten into it. Must have a good look at it tomorrow. Don't want them burrowing into it. :x
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 5:26 pm

    Those two lots of new leaves are the only leaves it has, apart from two very old & damaged leaves, soon to drop off. This time last year it was covered in leaves & flowers.

    A couple of days ago we discovered this hole in one of these two leaves. First time I have seen bug/grub/whatever damage on the leaves. This plant is highly toxic so I do hope whatever ate it is feeling very sick. Especially if it is the critter that has been destroying my hibiscus leaves.

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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Dawn on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 5:34 pm

    When I repotted my orchids they advised me to sprinkle ground cinnamon on to the roots and any broken piece or section trimmed to avoid fungis and related issues. I have never had a problem after doing this!. I am sure those ants wouldnt like it. I also think it is a natural blah blah and can't really hurt the plant?????. Well I wouldn't think so, but an idea if you want to try it out. What do you think? might put in check any rot ??
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Dawn on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 5:36 pm

    We cross posted

    or might deter what ever is trying eat it?
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 5:39 pm

    Shows how much of a cook I am, Dawn, as I don't have any cinnamon in my cupboard!!! I do, however, have a pyrethrum spray, which is a natural product, that can be used on ants.

    As that leaf is already damaged & will drop off very soon, I'm not worried about it. Do, though, think whatever ate it must be either very hungry or brave to eat that leaf. Now, my hibiscuses are a different problem.
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    Dawn

    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Dawn on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 6:01 pm

    Good you have an ant spray as they bring so much disease to plants in pots, especially if they are nesting in a drip tray etc. as I am sure you know already
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Joy on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 9:14 pm

    Think they are trying to nest in the pot, Dawn & none of my outdoor plants have drip trays. Too concerned about mozzies. :lol: There are a couple of types of ants that we have noticed. There are the small, but pesky, Pacific brown who aren't attracted to any ant baits & a slightly larger black ant. They seem to be the ones that are in & around the adenium obesum. There aren't many of them there, thank goodness. They are, also, the ones that "farm" scale insects. Fortunately, we have the skinks that live on our front & back patios who help to keep ant numbers down. Plus, of course, my trusty pyrethrum spray. With every plus there is a minus & ours is that I have to move the carnivorous plants if I want to do any spraying &, also, can't do it if it is windy.
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    default Re: Adenium Obesum ~ Desert Rose

    Post by Dawn on Fri 08 Jan 2010, 10:19 pm

    I know the feeling Joy ! ug ! pesky ants

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