plantrookie

Desert Rose leaf tips dying

plantrookie
15 years ago

I've had this desert rose (my favourite plant) for over a year I think. It started well last year, but then all the leaves started turning brown at the tip. This spring I repotted it into a bigger pot, moved it to a south facing window (sliding door off kitchen) fed it, and watered it more frequently. Next thing I know, it's twice as big, all the old, half-brown leaves had fallen off and given way to big, beautiful leaves about 3 times the size. This has lasted for about a month, but now the ends of many of these big new leaves are dying. I haven't changed anything since it responded so well. Any ideas??

Comments (59)

  • unclebill1956
    12 years ago

    Iam a new owner of this awesome plant and I saw spider mites on the leafs so I went and bought some spray at Wal mart and after I sprayed it the leaves fell off.I dont know if they fell off due to the spraying or what.I live in Wisconsin by Lake Michigan so one day it can be 90 and the next day it can be 60 so I keep the plant indoors.Does the air conditioning play a roll in this? Thanks! Bill

  • puglvr1
    12 years ago

    I live in Fl and I had some bugs on mine about a year and a half ago or more. I did what you did and sprayed it with some soapy water mixed with a little rubbing alcohol. almost all the leaves fell off. Since it was bald anyways, I went ahead and used the opportunity to trim the branches, since I like it wide not tall. Several months later it started flowering like crazy and new leaves started growing. It should re-grow, but now I use a systemic on the soil(for outdoor plants only) and I haven't had any more bugs since. I keep mine outside everyday except when the temps go below 40(I tend to overprotect it) which is just a few days a year for us, luckily...I have found that my plant doesn't like any type of spray being used on the leaves, even neem oil turned my leaves yellow and fall off. My DR leaves seems pretty sensitive...

    Here's a pic of my D. Rose (almost 4 years old?)

    Here is a link that might be useful: {{gwi:39490}}

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  • greenclaws UK, Zone 8a
    12 years ago

    That is one amazing DR!! Plus it's only a 4yr old, its a truly stunning plant....congratulations. Is it a seed grown one or did you buy it as a plant?
    I certainly hope my babies in the pic below will someday look like that...I doubt it though. This is my second attempt at growing them from seed as after seeing one in Bangkok I fell in love with them. I can germinate them reasonably well, but from last years batch of 10 seeds (9 germinated)only one made it through to spring this year and then died on me. I am now a bit more wise as their requirements. Hopefully these will do better as I still have 7 (out of the 8 that germinated this time) alive. The biggest one with the label in is around 8cms high.
    Gill.

  • puglvr1
    12 years ago

    Thanks for kind words Gill. I bought mine at a big box store, I think it was a one gal. pot.

    I just love your little D.Roses, they are absolutely adorable. How cool that you can grow them from seeds, I have never tried that. I might someday... I think your plants definitely has the potential of growing up to look just beautiful! I just got lucky with mine( of course lots of TLC) didn't hurt either. I up-potted it often, and I raised the caudex an inch or so everytime, so I would expose the trunk more and more. The Caudex is my favorite part of my plant and of course when it is in full bloom...Good luck, but I don't think you need it.

  • mvanauker_tampabay_rr_com
    12 years ago

    I am in the Tampa area. I have a DR from a friend who moved up north. All spring and summer long it has been thriving, I have repotted it and it has continuously had blooms.

    It sits on the back patio and it has been raining a lot during the day, while I am at work, but will otherwise bake in the afternoon sun. I am worried about it getting too much rain, since I am not around during the day to pull it in during those rains. It is in a pot that seems to drain well. The leaves are green and waxy, no leaves are brown, and there are still new blooms. But the leaves are curled on the edges. Should I worry?

  • puglvr1
    12 years ago

    It is possible that your D. Rose is getting too much rain. I have mine in very fast draining soil and I have tilted the pot(I stuck a small piece of 1" wood underneath)one side of the pot(so it is on an angle) so it will drain a little faster. When I am home when it rains I do go out of my way to drag it under a patio so the soil can dry out a bit. If you are seeing leaves curling up, it is an indication of something's going on...Check to make sure there aren't any bugs or pest? If its not the bugs that's causing it, its possible the soil is staying too wet. I would go ahead and put it under a patio for at least a few days to let the soil dry out a bit before it gets any worse. Only problem is when you put it back in full sun again...do it slowly as to not sunburn your leaves! If you want you can pull the plant out of the pot and see what the roots looks like? If the roots are really wet, you may have to get it out of the rain asap...Good luck!

    Here is a pic of my DR fast draining soil...

    Here is a link that might be useful: {{gwi:17950}}

  • lellie
    12 years ago

    Puglvr...WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    (I'll trade ya!)
    LOLAM

  • puglvr1
    12 years ago

    Thanks Lolam, what do you have to trade? LOL...

  • vanauker
    12 years ago

    Thanks for the post. I pulled the desert rose under the patio because of Fay (who just won't leave this state alone), to keep it out of the rain. I pulled the plant out of the pot. One small section of the root seems soft but most looks fine and free of rot. I can find no evidence of bugs. It has dropped some leaves and blooms but I read that if you change the plant's location -- particularly to an area that gets less light -- the desert rose will tend to do that. Between being under an overhang, and the simple fact that we have had no sunshine since Monday, it is in a much darker spot than normal. So I am keeping my fingers crossed that the plant is a little stressed but it isn't going to die on me.

  • vons
    12 years ago

    hi everyone, i got a desert rose from a friend who was killing it, potted it up, but still the leaves are turning brown and falling off, i will pull it up to check the roots to see if they are wet and soft. what about the trunk, mine is very soft near the roots, should it be soft or hard.

  • puglvr1
    12 years ago

    Vons, the trunk should be hard...yes check the roots and see if it looks or smells like it is rotting. Most of the times, when the trunk starts to get soft, its a sign of rotting. Let it dry out if the soil is wet and don't water again till the soil is dry. Good Luck!

  • puglvr1
    12 years ago

    Vons, the trunk should be hard...yes check the roots and see if it looks or smells like it is rotting. Most of the times, when the trunk starts to get soft, its a sign of rotting. Let it dry out if the soil is wet and don't water again till the soil is dry. Good Luck!

  • dalley
    12 years ago

    I have another question as to when I should trim my DR back. We travel from Iowa in the summer to Florida in the winter. It is getting cool here & it will be until the end of Oct. when we arrive in Florida. I have it in the camper now. Should I trim now or wait til we arrive in Florida?

  • puglvr1
    12 years ago

    If it were mine I would wait till you arrive in FL, But remember, once you do just keep an eye on it, when the temps in FL dips down. I would bring it in for protection. Although others have kept these outside in cooler weather(40's), I bring mine in when its warmer than that. I err on the side of caution. I do have a tendency to over protect... Just my opinion.

  • dalley
    12 years ago

    Ty I do bring mine in when it gets cool out to. Sometimes in the 50's!!!!! I also over protect...............

  • dalley
    12 years ago

    Any thing special I should know on cutting this back?

  • puglvr1
    12 years ago

    If you've never trimmed these before, they do have this sap that some people are allergic to and I think are poisonous? So be careful or use gloves..I have trimmed mine once or twice a year since I've had it(almost 4 years ago)... Just shape it how you like, they take pretty well to pruning and gets bushier. If you missed it, I posted pics above. Good luck!

  • dalley
    12 years ago

    Ok I have read all these posts & I still haven't found out for sure what to spray on it for mites??????????

  • puglvr1
    12 years ago

    dalley, this is my experience only. But I've never had any luck spraying my DR's foliage with anything, be it organic/homemade or store bought insecticides. I have tried several of them and each one has made the leaves turn yellow/brown and fall off within a few days. The only thing for me that worked was the Bayer Advanced for "outdoor container" formula, this is applied to the soil, and its a systemic. But if you bring yours inside the house this is NOT recommended for houseplants. Outdoor(non-edible) plants only.

    Maybe others here can recommend something that is safe to used on DR's, for plants that you bring indoors, I have even used Neem oil, and that also made the leaves fall off, granted it did get rid of the bugs, that was when I decided to really shape the tree and pruned it heavily. After all, it didn't have any leaves left anyways, LOL...Good luck!

    Here is a link that might be useful: Bayer Tree and Shrub 12 month Insect Control

  • mitchycarol
    11 years ago

    puglvr! I am a big fan of your beautiful Desert Rose plant and I hope that will still be available for questions!

    My DR is the same age but is pathetic by comparison. I live in a NYC apartment with a couple west facing windows and fire escape as my primary sun source. In reading this discussion I have learned of my many flaws, but I feel like the odds are against me and my plant here in the cold and well insulated apartment.

    I want to repot, resoil and trim my plant's branches. Should I wait until May to do that? Also, what is your recipe for a good soil? And how deep is your pot? It sounds like the smaller the better...

    Thanks for any and all help:)

  • puglvr1
    11 years ago

    Hi Mitch, I sent you an email yesterday about what soil I use. I forgot to mention that I can't be sure when to advise you on repotting for NYC? Since I live in Fl we have a much wider range of when I can repot and trim, for me I've done it late winter(end of Feb or early March) and late summer after blooming early Sept...we usually have a mild fall. I can always bring it in the garage should we have a late/early frost(very rare), though its happened I'm sure! If I had to guess I would say when your weather warms up, the warmer your weather the better for new growths and less chance of root rot.

    My DR is in a 16" pot, I bought it appx. four years ago? was in a 6" pot. If you are going to up-pot/trim your DR and the roots are not rootbound, I would use the same size, and just add some fast draning soil and lift the Caudex a couple of inches or so to start with. If your plant is outgrowing its pot, then I would go a size bigger. This is what I did with mine, but only if you feel comfortable doing it. I would hate to be responsible to your DR being damaged in any way. I'm not an expert, just sharing my methods...Good luck!

    Thanks for the kind words on my DR.

  • zacbit
    11 years ago

    Just acquired 6" tall, very small Desert Rose in 4" plastic pot as gift. Had never heard of this plant before. Intriged..enjoyed info about it on this site that I just found. Would appreciate any helpful hint, especially as to what systemic pesticide to use if it gets bugs.

    Looking forward to growing this plant and being a part of this group. Live in Southeast Texas. Would like to sent picture but don't see option. Help with that?

  • puglvr1
    11 years ago

    Welcome Zacbit,

    Actutally if you go to the Cactus and Succulent Forum, there are tons of posts on Desert Rose(Adenium).

    I'm not recommending this to anyone, just saying that this is what I've used and worked for me. This Bayer is recommended for Outdoor Plants(never use this for houseplants) I had to use it since everything that I've tried spraying on the leaves made the leaves turn yellow then fall off.

    http://www.bayeradvanced.com/product/12-month-tree-and-shrub-protect-and-feed/concentrate.html

    Below is a great link(from the FL forum) on how to post pictures...HTH

    My Desert Rose...

    Here is a link that might be useful: How To Post Pictures On GW

  • rosepedal
    11 years ago

    Wow that is beautiful...It really loves you and florida...Thank you for sharing it....:))))

  • zacbit
    11 years ago

    Trying to post pic of my new 7" plant. Need info on how to care for..How to make it branch..
    http://s681.photobucket.com/albums/vv172/ZacBic/?action=view&current=100_15443

    Here is a link that might be useful: PhotoBucket

  • zacbit
    11 years ago
  • cbressler1976
    11 years ago

    I finally know what my plant is!! I looked up desert rose because I wasn't sure what you were talking about.....well, when I moved into my house a year ago the origional owners left a huge one here and it was in sad shape...(it had aphids all over it!).....so I hosed it down every day and now it has tons of flowers all over it....it's very beautiful...I water it every day and it seems to love it....but I also live in south florida and it's very hot here...

  • zacbit
    11 years ago

    ZacBit here....Still appreciate any info you can give me. Please see two above messages....Photo is posted under "PhotoBucket" link in second message. (14:02). Have a very small plant as you will see in photo. Is growing straight up. Need to know how to make it branch..and any other advice you can give me. Thank you......

  • erict
    11 years ago

    Hello ZacBit.

    Adeniums can be trimmed quite heavily. Three things to keep in mind: *extremely sterile knife*, and *cut at an angle*, *wait until dormant*.

    Trimming adeniums during the middle of the growing seasons takes off the leaves that would help grow the new branches you want. This is why adenium grower prefer to wait for the dormant season to whack the plant to its base+2inch height.

  • fireflyintexas
    11 years ago

    I have three Desert Roses - adeniums obesums - and I almost killed one when the soil around it stayed moist. These plants like to be DRY. You won't kill them by letting them dry out for a week or so. The reason they have "gouty" bases is that is their water storage. Even if you let them dry out for a month, all you would see is the trunk start to shrivel a bit, indicating that it could use some water. These plants are hard to kill from underwatering, but they will rot and die if you have them in a continually moist soil. They like sunshine too. The warmer and drier, the better. Good luck!
    fireflyintexas

  • estonehi_gmail_com
    10 years ago

    Hi, I need some help. The branches from my girlfriends DR has slowly been dying and now the top part of the trunk is easy to squeeze. I initially thought it was some issue with the roots, where nutrients were not getting to the plant because the root system was drying, so I replanted in it small pebbles and rarely water. I saw when repotting that the original pebble mix was very moist and maybe that was killing off the roots. I do not know what to do now..do I cut the softened top part of the DR and hope it recovers, or is there some advice I can get here? Thanks so much! :[

  • Marie Tran
    10 years ago

    Hello Eddie, my 2 cents advice to you.
    When DR caudex gets soft, cut off the soft part, don't try to save any of it, because it will get worst if you try to save it. Dry out in the sun for 2 days to let the sap dry up. Take any paint (yes, the paint you use for your house, any paint) paint over the cut part and left out one more day for the paint to dry. Pot it and leave it in the shade for 2 weeks to heal. After that, full sun is okay. Marie from Houston.

  • socrfan
    10 years ago

    I just picked up another DR, this one from Wal Mart. It was the last one they had and on half price sale. It's interesting because the branch lower down is normal and the branches on top are variegated. Surprised nobody grabbed it but I find that many people don't know anything about variegation so they may have thought something was wrong with it. I'll be interested in seeing how it develops.

    By the way puglvr, that is one sweet looking plant. Take care of that puppy, it's a beaut!!

  • SunnyA1A_aol_com
    9 years ago

    I have a beautiful Desert Rose plant that is kept outdoors all year long (I live in Florida). It is about 3 ft high, has bright rose colored flowers, and on two additional branches has totally white flowers. It looks beautiful, but has anyone ever heard of one plant having two different colored flowers?

  • talonslady
    9 years ago

    Well i have 2 desert roses one i have had almost a yr and on it there looks to be a long cigar looking thing...lol i think it might have seeds in it..I have 2 questions one is how do i plant them if they are? and the second question is that in the yr that i have had it it only has bloomed maybe twice why would that be any help would be grateful....The other plant has bloomed quite a few times since i have had it

  • jiglesias_fisherislandclub_net
    9 years ago

    I have a Dwarf Desert rose in my front yard that it is probably about 20 years old and noticed some branches growing too close to the ground and I am afraid that they get damaged when cutting lawn. I wonder if I can cut them and plant them somewhere else, I wonder if they will grow....any ideas?

    {{gwi:1312540}}

  • karyn1
    9 years ago

    Janie your DR is spectacular! I've never seen one planted in the ground. Where do you live? I've trimmed my DR's but toss out the trimmings. I assume that the cuttings can be rooted if you allow the cut end to cure for a few days. On a plant that size I'm not sure how close to the base it should be cut. I'd post this on the Plumeria and/or Cacti & Succulents forum to get expert advice. I'd hate to give you incorrect info that would damage your beautiful plant.

  • Toni72141
    9 years ago

    My Desert Rose has a few brown leaf tips, but it also has tiny worm-like things in the saucer. How can I get rid of those?

  • greenthumb_5
    9 years ago

    They go dorment when they don't have enough sunlight but all I can say is that you can pretty much keep them in a greenhouse to get the maximum amount of sun light.

  • lilce51286
    7 years ago

    The desert rose in this plant has been revived since Mar 2013 I pruned it hard due to the leaves yellowing/dying since I bought it from lowes and potted it indoors. Its been doing good until earlier this week the leaves started to slowly yellow/brown on the tips again. Only different thing is needing more sun. So i moved it to the southern exposure window sill (afternoon full sun) because i believe it needs it. The other leaves are now slowly turning brown on the tips/drying. All my plants only get watered until completly dry, but since I have it in the gritty mix, I have to water more often, and I still check to make sure its dry. I use a chopstick and shove it in the soil and if it comes out damp I don't water. AC daytime 75 and night 73. Here its summer and extremely humid but I keep the desert roses indoors potted on the sill. Any reason why the leaf decline all of a sudden? Hoping this new location will reverse it by giving more sun light, since before its in the northern exposure and got the same watering. Each watering I use foliage pro/bloom booster so not sure if this is whats causing it to do this? and the water sits out overnight tap water

  • lilce51286
    7 years ago

    close up of the leaves

  • greg61032
    6 years ago

    I received 2 potted D R plants late last year and they are doing wonderfully, I am asking where do I keep them in the summer? In the front of my house (East) or the back (west) the back is full sun.Or do I bring them inside in the AC? And how much water? I give them a nice drink everyday, because right now they are in the direct west sun. I live in NorthWestern Tucson AZ. TKS Greg

  • puglvr1
    5 years ago

    Since you live in AZ...I would not keep them in FULL sun...is there a tree/shade area you can put it under? My sister lives in Las Vegas and you probably have similar summer weather and hers cooked in full sun...it might be okay to give it an hour of morning sun...but you should really find a porch or shaded area to keep it under and I would water it often...NOT wet but it water it well...let it dry out somewhat and water it well again...

    You can always try bringing it indoor if they don't do well in shade...but bringing them inside might cause your leaves to drop? Big difference in A/C and outdoor climate...but keep an eye on it...I think shade with some light filtered sun from the branches might be your best bet.


    Maybe someone from AZ will chime in and give you better suggestions...Good luck!!

  • wendymrsp70
    5 years ago

    Hello, I live in the UK Oxfordshire. I am new to these kind of plants, as I am somewhat disabled I thought I would try indoor gardening to go out in the summer. I bought lots of seeds propagators and lights. My problem is everything I've planted has just taken off, I have at least 40 plus adenium and they all have lovely dark green shiny leaves. I've bought a stand so I can put them out in the summer, will they be okay in full sun here in England. Should I cull the tiny skinny ones, I don't want to but I have Jasmine and Chilli plants coming out of my ears as we say here, I have several mimosa pudica which I absolutely adore. I just love planting the seeds and nurturing the babies, I didn't expect everything to grow. I've loved reading all the posts I mainly wanted to know which size and material pots I should use. I want them to stay squat at the bottom with branches, can anyone advise

  • Bobby Knell
    5 years ago

    So glad I found this blog. I've been wondering why my DR's leaves suddenly start to curl and then drop off. What I learnt/realized from ready this blog is that it is the bug spray. I recently sprayed with Neem and lo and behold the leaves are now all gone. I have mine planted in a Bonsai mix (mostly gravel) so I know it is not being over watered. Am going to go with the systemic insecticide. Am wondering if I can trim it now, since it has no leaves, or should I wait until the fall?

  • e061312
    5 years ago

    I have a very large Desert rose, guessing it is about 14yrs old. It has always done very well. We are in Midwest and we bring it in for winter, and move back outside is summer. This year it has a few flowers, but I am more concerned with the leaves. They are very small, there are new one's but all small. It looks nothing like it did in previous years. Any idea what is wrong. No root rot, and it does not appear to be dropping it's little leaves.

  • krismaz2112
    5 years ago

    I haven't heard anyone talk about DR,that are planted outside in the ground. Mine gets the afternoon sun,it was doing good but now it looks sad. Yellow leaves.I hardly water it at all but it has rained a lot this year,I think that mite be it. Should I spray it with quick blooming spray?

  • lilce51286
    5 years ago

    I leave both of mine on the deck (south facing full afternoon-evening sun) and it goes through a cycle. I don't water it unless it's been a long dry spell since I seen my DR love to be severely dry. I keep them in small pots, I'll squeeze the base to make sure it's still firm before I decide to water, and it grows fine. As for the leaves that goes through a cycle of turning green-brown tips-yellow-fall off and new leaves go right back. They flower every year. I live in Maryland east coast so basically whatever rain it gets I let nature decided & only water if the base is soft, we have a bad dry spell. I water w/a mix of Dyna grow products

    top photo is the final product - tall skinny one has white flowers and this one blooms slower. Bottom left before it blooms w/all green leaves. Bottom right is what it looks like today all leaves fell off due to daily summer storms but there's tiny green leaf shoots emerging now. So my plant goes through leaf cycles

  • HU-914330248
    10 months ago

    I have been trying to grow a desert rose for many years now. When I first got it the pot was too small so I repotted it, but I used regular soil and was very tricky to water it just enough to keep it between brown tipped leaves and yellow leaves. I finally read up and repotted it into cactus/succulent potting mix. When I had pulled it out of the old pot I was amazed it was still alive because it had only 2 or 3 small roots coming off the big ball, and it surely had root rot. There was not much at stake so I washed it in water and actually sprayed it very hard with the hose nozzle to clean off the black stuff. Back to the new pot and soil, it started to grow very fast but the leaves will not get dark green, they look pale. The soil was miracle grow and I'm wondering if it has the wrong fertilizer in it? Also even though it drain much better than before, I think I'd like to pot it again with a good amount of sand added to the succulant soil so it drains even better. Oh, I did pull it out of the new soil once to see how the root rot was doing and it had grown new roots like crazy! I couldn't believe how fast the new roots grew! So what do you think I should do? Add sand because I feel it is still holds too much water, and what about the pale green? It used to have dark green leaves. It has only bloomed once in many years, sometimes I just can't give up on a living plant no matter how bad it looks.

    Thanks, Tony

  • HU-945813666
    2 months ago

    So i planted desert roses outside and during sprintime they bloomed beautiful. But with the winter approaching in Texas, all the leaves turned brown. Please help me with info on how i can save them. Thank