Indoor plants help

BettaFishObsessed

I have a few plants I need help with, so I’m just grouping them all into one post to avoid spam.

1. English Ivy
I have some indoor english ivy plants thats have been doing fine for a while, and getting the right amount of water, and suddenly one of them is starting to dry up? The leaves are shriveling up and starting to get crunchy, although its still green. What is wrong with it/what am i doing wrong and what do I do to help it?

2. Rex Begonia
I have a feeling theres nothing I can do with this one, I have no idea what I did wrong though. The leaf tips starting getting a little brown and I searched online and realized it was probably a bit overwatered so I started letting it dry out between waterings. A few weeks later that did not help and all except one leaf has wilted and fallen off and the last leaf is well on its way there. What did I do wrong/ is there anything more I can do/ what should I do different next time?

3. Elephant bush
I got this plant from a family member, who had it next to a heater leaving it obviously not doing pretty well. It has almost no leaves and some branches have dried up, and it honestly hasn’t been doing much better with me. What do I do to encourage more leaves and help it?

4. Majesty Palm
I got this plant a few months ago from home depot and nothings really wrong with it, its just that it was a home depot plant and obv isnt the healthiest, some of the leaves are just not standing up tall and theres still a good amount of tears and brown spots on its leaves. What can I do to help it stand taller?
 

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mattgirl

The only one I have a suggestion for is the Majesty Palm. Move it over to the corner where sunlight from the window isn't falling on it. The leaves on the fronds can easily be burned. They prefer indirect light. The fronds do naturally droop so there is not much you can do about that. Mine grew very slowly at first but now it is at least 7 feet tall. I have had mine for at least 20 years though.
 
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BettaFishObsessed

The only one I have a suggestion for is the Majesty Palm. Move it over to the corner where sunlight from the window isn't falling on it. The leaves on the fronds can easily be burned. They prefer indirect light. The fronds do naturally droop so there is not much you can do about that. Mine grew very slowly at first but now it is at least 7 feet tall. I have had mine for at least 20 years though.

Thank you! Ill move it to the other side of the room, thanks !
 
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Lakefish

Well, I think you are right about the begonia. Too much water caused the roots to rot off, and now there aren't enough left to support the remainder of the plant. At this point I'd just chuck it. Not very likely it can regenerate, the rot is probably up too far into the crown. The ivy might be in a similar state, but it is a much tougher plant so it's hard to tell. If you scrape a little of the brown skin off each of the vines, is it green underneath? If so, you can save it. If it is brown right through, that vine is dead so you may as well cut it off. You might want to take the whole thing out of the pot and check the state of the roots. Some new potting mix may be in order (ditto for the elephant bush, that soil looks really old!).
I find it helpful to keep a bamboo skewer or chopstick jammed right down in most of my plants. It is much easier to pull that out and check the moisture level than to try and gauge by the top little bit of soil you can dig your finger into. No more drowned plants...I still crispify the odd plant, though :)
 
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BettaFishObsessed

Well, I think you are right about the begonia. Too much water caused the roots to rot off, and now there aren't enough left to support the remainder of the plant. At this point I'd just chuck it. Not very likely it can regenerate, the rot is probably up too far into the crown. The ivy might be in a similar state, but it is a much tougher plant so it's hard to tell. If you scrape a little of the brown skin off each of the vines, is it green underneath? If so, you can save it. If it is brown right through, that vine is dead so you may as well cut it off. You might want to take the whole thing out of the pot and check the state of the roots. Some new potting mix may be in order (ditto for the elephant bush, that soil looks really old!).
I find it helpful to keep a bamboo skewer or chopstick jammed right down in most of my plants. It is much easier to pull that out and check the moisture level than to try and gauge by the top little bit of soil you can dig your finger into. No more drowned plants...I still crispify the odd plant, though :)

Thanks! Also gave the begonia new potting mix today, but I don’t have high hopes for it :/ ill give the ivy and elephant bush new soil tomorrow. the ivy looks like this underneath, its not brown but its not rlly green either, just white. is this still okay?
 

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Lakefish

Ha...that is a bit hard to tell. Looks kind of green in the picture. Take your best guess!
 
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ShannyB

Begonia's are divas, especially Rex's, and I've killed my fair share for sure! They are rhizomatous plants, so it's really important to let them dry out between waterings. I let mine get a bit droopy before watering. It may be salvageable if the rhizome is not completely rotted. Let it dry out completely...like, you should feel like the strongest human when you lift it because it's so light from being dry! Also, I bottom water most of my plants but especially begonias as the water sitting on the rhizome can encourage rot. Especially this time of year (depending where you are climate wise) as the humidity begins to climb. Prefers bright indirect light.

Elephant bush is a succulent and will also prefer to dry out between watering, and it will enjoy quite a bit of light (even some direct, just watch for foliage damage). You could uproot it and see if it needs a smaller pot...seems like an awful lot of pot/dirt for so little growth.

Both the elephant and begonia should have amended soil (added perlite or vermiculite...something that keeps the soil from compacting around the roots). I mix my own using coco coir, but you can used bagged stuff and amend it to improve drainage.

Speaking of drainage, all plants should have drainage holes and (if top watering) not be allowed to sit in water in the collection dish for more than ~30 minutes (okay, when I bottom water I forget and have left some overnight, but 30 minutes is a good rule) before you empty it.

I don't know a lot about palms but definitely protect it from direct sun as suggested. Also not much experience with ivy. Both could be removed from their pots and check the roots. They should be white and firm. Cut away any dead/mushy brown roots, then repot (amend the soil here too...bagged potting mixes are generally super heavy and become easily water logged so good practice to at least toss in a couple handfuls of perlite). As a vine you could probably chop back quite a bit of the ivy...if the roots are healthy that will help it refocus energy on new growth instead of trying to save those vines that are probably no longer viable.

The ivy may have outgrown the pot...it looks pretty full and if everything is fine and then suddenly they seem to be drying out more quickly I usually check to see if it needs an upgrade. If it's a tight root ball when you take it out of the pot may be good to go up a size. When you repot don't go up in size more than ~1 pot size (4" to 6", 6" to 8", etc). Most plants would rather be a little root bound than have lots of space...and the more space in the pot the more soil to get and stay wet, adding to overwatering problems.

A good general rule is that it's better to underwater than overwater. Even my tropical, sensitive plants like calathea tend to do better the busier I am when I forget about them a little. I used to water on a strict weekly schedule but now I just wait until they feel light or get a bit droopy. I'll put some hydro spikes in some in the next few weeks as the growing season really takes off but otherwise I let most dry out a bit!

Hope this helps!
 
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BettaFishObsessed

Begonia's are divas, especially Rex's, and I've killed my fair share for sure! They are rhizomatous plants, so it's really important to let them dry out between waterings. I let mine get a bit droopy before watering. It may be salvageable if the rhizome is not completely rotted. Let it dry out completely...like, you should feel like the strongest human when you lift it because it's so light from being dry! Also, I bottom water most of my plants but especially begonias as the water sitting on the rhizome can encourage rot. Especially this time of year (depending where you are climate wise) as the humidity begins to climb. Prefers bright indirect light.

Elephant bush is a succulent and will also prefer to dry out between watering, and it will enjoy quite a bit of light (even some direct, just watch for foliage damage). You could uproot it and see if it needs a smaller pot...seems like an awful lot of pot/dirt for so little growth.

Both the elephant and begonia should have amended soil (added perlite or vermiculite...something that keeps the soil from compacting around the roots). I mix my own using coco coir, but you can used bagged stuff and amend it to improve drainage.

Speaking of drainage, all plants should have drainage holes and (if top watering) not be allowed to sit in water in the collection dish for more than ~30 minutes (okay, when I bottom water I forget and have left some overnight, but 30 minutes is a good rule) before you empty it.

I don't know a lot about palms but definitely protect it from direct sun as suggested. Also not much experience with ivy. Both could be removed from their pots and check the roots. They should be white and firm. Cut away any dead/mushy brown roots, then repot (amend the soil here too...bagged potting mixes are generally super heavy and become easily water logged so good practice to at least toss in a couple handfuls of perlite). As a vine you could probably chop back quite a bit of the ivy...if the roots are healthy that will help it refocus energy on new growth instead of trying to save those vines that are probably no longer viable.

The ivy may have outgrown the pot...it looks pretty full and if everything is fine and then suddenly they seem to be drying out more quickly I usually check to see if it needs an upgrade. If it's a tight root ball when you take it out of the pot may be good to go up a size. When you repot don't go up in size more than ~1 pot size (4" to 6", 6" to 8", etc). Most plants would rather be a little root bound than have lots of space...and the more space in the pot the more soil to get and stay wet, adding to overwatering problems.

A good general rule is that it's better to underwater than overwater. Even my tropical, sensitive plants like calathea tend to do better the busier I am when I forget about them a little. I used to water on a strict weekly schedule but now I just wait until they feel light or get a bit droopy. I'll put some hydro spikes in some in the next few weeks as the growing season really takes off but otherwise I let most dry out a bit!

Hope this helps!

Not letting it dry out enough between waterings was most likely my problem, ill be more careful with letting it dry out next time!
The elephant bush probably does need a smaller pot, when I got it it was in a pot with no drainage so to make life easier i just put it in the only other pot i had at the time. I do let it dry out between waterings
The elephant bush has a sandy soil, the begonia was just pure potting soil. That was probably another of my problems with the begonia
Ill repot the ivy when I give it new soil, and make sure the roots arent rotten. The palm just looks scorched, and its so big that honestly i probably wont bother checking the roots if i dont have too lol
That was very helpful, thank you!
 
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ShannyB

Not letting it dry out enough between waterings was most likely my problem, ill be more careful with letting it dry out next time!
The elephant bush probably does need a smaller pot, when I got it it was in a pot with no drainage so to make life easier i just put it in the only other pot i had at the time. I do let it dry out between waterings
The elephant bush has a sandy soil, the begonia was just pure potting soil. That was probably another of my problems with the begonia
Ill repot the ivy when I give it new soil, and make sure the roots arent rotten. The palm just looks scorched, and its so big that honestly i probably wont bother checking the roots if i dont have too lol
That was very helpful, thank you!

You're welcome! And I hear you on the palm...I have a 15 year old giant lily along with a huge monstera that are both beasts that I avoid repotting/uprooting as long as possible! When you transplant the ivy go ahead and massage/break up the roots too. This will encourage new root growth. Good luck!
 
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BettaFishObsessed

You're welcome! And I hear you on the palm...I have a 15 year old giant lily along with a huge monstera that are both beasts that I avoid repotting/uprooting as long as possible! When you transplant the ivy go ahead and massage/break up the roots too. This will encourage new root growth. Good luck!

Thanks!
 
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Flyfisha

I would like to contribute to the conversation on watering indoor plants.

My climate has a big swing between the heat of summer and the cold of winter. We heat our house in winter and have air conditioning running in the heat of summer.
My statement is simple .
At least in my climate. “Its not possible to have the same watering routine year round.”
 
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mattgirl

One more suggestion if you are not already doing it. Water your house plants with water you've pulled from the tank during a water change. The best water is the water you get when you vacuum the gravel or rinse your filter media. :)
 
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Motherlovebetta

I rescued an overwatered begonia from Lowe’s last fall! It’s almost a foot tall now! Try and cut those big leaves off at the node and let the soil dry out or repot it. I second the watering from below.
The Palm.....Don’t let it dry out completely between watering. Try increasing the humidity i dont know where you live.... mist with water, portable humidifier, take in the bathroom when you are showering and leave the bath fan off. Better to increase the humidity than overwater.
The elephant bush I would also cut back to where the leaves are coming out. You won’t get any new growth on that part and it will help the plant feed the leaves that are on it rather than that part. I think I water mine every two weeks at the most. Mine is in a bright direct sun window too. That one is definitely salvageable.
Also agree with using your aquarium water I have some monsters I use it on! Good luck!
 
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BettaFishObsessed

I would like to contribute to the conversation on watering indoor plants.

My climate has a big swing between the heat of summer and the cold of winter. We heat our house in winter and have air conditioning running in the heat of summer.
My statement is simple .
At least in my climate. “Its not possible to have the same watering routine year round.”

I agree, the way the humidity changes with the seasons you need to change the watering schedule

One more suggestion if you are not already doing it. Water your house plants with water you've pulled from the tank during a water change. The best water is the water you get when you vacuum the gravel or rinse your filter media. :)
Oh cool, I didn’t know that!

I rescued an overwatered begonia from Lowe’s last fall! It’s almost a foot tall now! Try and cut those big leaves off at the node and let the soil dry out or repot it. I second the watering from below.
The Palm.....Don’t let it dry out completely between watering. Try increasing the humidity i dont know where you live.... mist with water, portable humidifier, take in the bathroom when you are showering and leave the bath fan off. Better to increase the humidity than overwater.
The elephant bush I would also cut back to where the leaves are coming out. You won’t get any new growth on that part and it will help the plant feed the leaves that are on it rather than that part. I think I water mine every two weeks at the most. Mine is in a bright direct sun window too. That one is definitely salvageable.
Also agree with using your aquarium water I have some monsters I use it on! Good luck!
I had cut off the dead leaves and changed the soil but it still died : ( i try to keep the palm moist, but sometimes it ends up drying out a little more than it probably should since its just so much work to water it. Ill try the shower humidity trick, thanks! Ill cut back the dead branches on the elephant bush later! Thanks for the advice!
 
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BettaFishObsessed

I rescued an overwatered begonia from Lowe’s last fall! It’s almost a foot tall now! Try and cut those big leaves off at the node and let the soil dry out or repot it. I second the watering from below.
The Palm.....Don’t let it dry out completely between watering. Try increasing the humidity i dont know where you live.... mist with water, portable humidifier, take in the bathroom when you are showering and leave the bath fan off. Better to increase the humidity than overwater.
The elephant bush I would also cut back to where the leaves are coming out. You won’t get any new growth on that part and it will help the plant feed the leaves that are on it rather than that part. I think I water mine every two weeks at the most. Mine is in a bright direct sun window too. That one is definitely salvageable.
Also agree with using your aquarium water I have some monsters I use it on! Good luck!
I just cut back all the dead branches on the elephant bush and some of the fully dead braches i was uprooting and discovered root rot D : no idea how that happened. But none of the still living branches had it so i just removed all the rotting stuff. Ill repot/change out soil tomorrow. Thanks for the advice, probably wouldn’t have ended up doing anything without everyone on here’s advice!
 
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Motherlovebetta

Awesome! Yea, better to underwater than overwater. They usually recover quickly if you underwater. Palms can just be divas!
 
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bumblinBee

Mmm I'm betting the English Ivy is either root rot OR when it was transplanted into that pot nobody broke up the root ball and so the soil surrounding it is soaking up water, but none of it is actually getting to the roots... I would definitely suggest repotting into fresh soil and if it looks to be root rot then I might suggest a peroxide solution dip before transplanting.

Edit* Do these pots have drainage holes?
 
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