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Philodendron gloriosum struggling after rhizome cut

4 months ago
last modified: 4 months ago

I recently repotted my Philodendron gloriosum in fresh soil and decided to trim off part of the rhizome that had no leaves growing from it. I sterilized my shears before cutting and applied cinnamon to the cut end as a fungicide before repotting. The leaves are now turning yellow and dying one by one, starting from the cut end. I've already removed the first two leaves it happened to. I'm worried that I may not have left enough healthy roots to support the remaining leaves - I didn't fully untangle the roots before cutting and didn't realize how much of the root system was attached to the removed section. Or it could be something else - maybe a virus? (See comments for photos.) I'm especially kicking myself because the plant seemed to be doing great before this - I should've just left it alone. But the rhizome had grown to the full width of the pot, and I was having some issues with gnats that I was hoping fresh soil would help with. Any advice on how I might salvage my plant?

Comments (14)

  • Yuri Claro

    It may be shock because of the trauma it suffered, I am not well versed in philos but if the roots are healthy, it will bounce back, maybe with one leaf or two, or just the rhizome. But, if the roots are healthy, it will recover with care and patience.

  • petrushka

    those do not look like healthy roots to me. I've been growing P. gloriosum for sev years and it's rhizome (the older part of it) got bare. But it had roots going down along the whole length of it. So what I did, I just cut the the rhizome without lifting it or disturbing the roots and within a month I had 2 buds on leafless rhizome :). I think I left 1 leaf on it though, but it declined soon. it's doing fine, has small baby leaves on 2 shoots at once!

    and then I wrapped long fiber sphag around the growing tip - where new roots form easily. they did grow too. and then I cut off the tip with 2 leaves and roots and it's doing fine now too. I am still not disturbing the original pot, as I like having multi stalks from 2 halves of rhizome instead of 1 growing tip.

    I agree, that if you wrap your cut rhizome in LF sphag and keep it moist in wrapped plastic, it should regrow new roots. I would also tent the whole thing in plastic to increase humidity and reduce evaporation from leaves. They will decline as plant uses them to grow new roots.

    your old rhizome should resprout too. Be patient, keep it in good light and warm and humid.

  • hc mcdole

    GRRR! Another wasted post on GW a few minutes ago. All the typing and finding photos - gone!

    So here goes again. I would cut off the yellow leaf first thing as it is just a waste if energy for the roots to supply water and nutrients. Perhaps the next leaf up the stem after that too.

    Lessons learned - a total repot is very stressful on a plant. Do add humidity like others have commented on.

    I am going to try adding pictures again and hope it goes in this time.

    I obtained Gloriosum several years ago in a trade (my begonias for whatever the other person had).

    I piled all the philo cuttings I got into one big bowl and years later separated them. In 2016, the gloriosum spread quite a bit into the yard and rooted. When I took it inside in October, the wayward stems broke off. I put those into a big lasagna sized aluminum pan for propagation with a little potting mix. I also put Begonia valida in the same pan and let them compete.

    I am posting this and adding pictures in if the post is successful this time.

    Yay, the post went this time. Here is the photo of it spreading in the lawn in 2014. Going through my pictures, the earliest date was back in 2007 so it is a slow grower. I am going to submit this to see if the pictures are going to go now.

    Yay, another success. It also bloomed in the yard that year but I won't post any photos of it since it was not that significant (pretty).

    In 2016, it spread beyond the bowl and I took the broken stems and put those in a pan like I mentioned earlier. The bowl in the middle is where the Gloriosum started from.

    Ah, here is a photo of a bloom bud in 2017 (mother plant).

    July 2017, the broken stems look small compared to the begonias.

    I will submit this to see if it goes.

    Yay, that went too. By October, it had produced a few more leaves.

    Same pan in August this year. The other striped leaf aroid is Alocasia 'Frydek'

    I also had a surprise this summer from the mother plant (the same old bowl with the same old mix (maybe top it off every other year). I cut this old ugly leaf off and discovered a mutant leaf behind it.

    The bright yellow has faded to almost white since Aug 19 to this (Oct 7) I hope the new leaves will continue with this mutant growth.

  • Cassandra H

    Just wanted to say HC mcdole that you’re mutant gloriosum is AMAZING. I hope it continues and maybe you can isolate it. People would probably pay big bucks for it. Wow.

  • clginsf

    Thank you, everyone!! I cut off the yellowing leaves, wrapped the rhizome and roots in damp sphagnum, and moss, and put the rhizome and moss in a Ziploc bag. So far it seems to be doing okay!

  • petrushka

    you should see new white tipped roots in a week :). when you plant use a shallow wide pot, as the rhizome just creeps on the surface. your prev pot was too deep and narrow.

    you should not be replanting it for at least a couple of years. I use so called begonia hanging baskets. but most hanging baskets that are very wide on top and narrow on the bottom will do. However, they will be unstable since the leaves will get large. I have found that only when it's given partial sunlight in west or east window indoors it will grow normal petioles, otherwise they'll get very long.

    you can put the shallow pot inside a glazed cachepot to keep it steady.

  • Stacia Bielecki

    I recently cut my Gloriosum to give a piece to my friend. The cutting appeared to have good roots but the leaves are now yellowing!! Any ideas?

  • petrushka

    you need to uses nutrients from leaves to develop more takes 4-6 weeks to finally the new shoot to develop and start growing. you need to have patience. :)

  • The Silent Seed

    Mcdole, any updates on your plant?

  • hc mcdole

    The pale part of the leaf didn't like the cold so it is almost gone now. Time will tell if the next leaf or two keep that mutant gene or not.

  • Cassandra H

    Thanks for the update!

  • Samantha Gertz

    Wow what a beautiful plant!! I have a Gloriosum on the way to me. Can’t wait to grow it.

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