It’s been really humid here, so humid the dehumidifiers inside haven’t had enough time to catch up and lower the humidity back down to where I want it.
And I think this is pretty obvious when you have a look at the soil in my plants. Heck, my basil pot’s growing mushrooms!
That’s outside, but the point remains, it’s crazy humid right now, and honestly it hasn’t even been raining so I don’t even want to know how bad it would be if it was!
What’s this done to my year old Calathea that’s been planted indoors? Well he looks miserable…
Like, about to kick the bucket miserable. And I honestly thought he was a goner, even though he’s stuck around like a trooper all this time.
This was him in August so legit WTF??!
If I didn’t have a crazy beautiful succulent garden outside that I’d created by quite literally propagating one pot at a time and starting a bunch of bougainvillias off with climbing walls and planting yuccas that have grown beautifully myself, I would’ve thought it was me.
I don’t think it’s me. You may think it’s you, but it may not be you!! You may just not know what exactly the problem is or how to fix it with this one plant. And no, not everything is down to over-watering.
Initially I though I’d over watered. So I stopped watering. But he looked miserable, so I watered again, and then he perked up!! And so I cut off all the dead and called it a day.
But it was a psych out. That’s when that horrible look happened.
Dreadful. So what’s the problem?
Fungus? The only thing I could think of. There were no pests, and he hadn’t moved in a year, he’d made it through a very cloudy winter last year and there wasn’t a cloud in the autumn sky now, so it couldn’t magically be a lighting issue.
I clued into the fact that although I repotted him when I first brought him home, last year I needed to give the Bird’s Nest fern I brought home a good douse of hydrogen peroxide to save her from dying to fungus that the fungus gnats that plagued my house were happily feasting on.
All was well after that (if only I learned this trick before the others died!), and time went on without a re-emergence of the fungus.
That’s her right now, so just fine!
Well, as a last ditch effort I threw some hydrogen peroxide into this Calathea’s pot, following it up within a few minutes with some water to spread it around a bit.
That was yesterday afternoon or evening.
Low and behold, this morning he’s looking a bit better…
Not quite perked up all the way, but better! And a lot of dead, but I’m going to leave that until the plant seems stable and growing, just in case, I’m not sure of what.
Maybe it’s better to cut off the dead right away but I did that last time and it tanked after so I don’t know if my intuition’s wonky but it’s telling me to leave it and keep doing what’s working for a little bit until the plant is stable, and then cut the dead off.
Who cares if this makes sense I’m sticking with it.
I did the same with this one outside that I couldn’t be sure was dealing with the same problem…
He could have just been thirsty but I did water him literal days ago (albeit without a collector pot, so maybe he dried out too quick, but the soil was a teeensy bit damp to the touch!
All the other Calatheas outside looked great!
I just got these from Lidl not too long ago and that’s what he looked like, wilting long before the others did from the start.
So just to be on the safe side if it really was just him with the problem, I figured, hydrogen peroxide chased with some water in a new pot anddd leave him alone to see!
Propped him up against the wall too and moved him because I preferred him here over where he initially was.
So how’d that work?
Well he’s looking so much better today!
I will probably give both plants a few days off and then do another round of hydrogen peroxide and water.
I really don’t do anything special, just plop in a random quantity of hydrogen peroxide straight out of the bottle (that came from the first aid section of the grocery store!) and then follow up with a regular amount of water as though I was watering the plant.
That seems to do the trick.
Crossing fingers they will make it through, because I love these plants so stinkin’ much, especially the indoor one, and I honestly don’t have a lot of options I like that will be good in low light with my cats being obsessed with snacking on houseplants in here!
Well, only one cat of my three, actually… Avery, he’s an addict!
But he likes lettuce, so he’s an oddball and a half…
I’m crossing my this fingers the hydrogen peroxide does the trick for all my woes at the moment.
I rarely ever have issues with pests these days, but sometimes my plants kick the bucket anyways, and I’m guessing it’s something fungal because it’s gnat season.
This year, I’m hoping they gnats stay outside!
Edit 2023/11/21: The outdoor one? Perfection! The indoor one? It didn’t work. Sadly, the indoor one didn’t make it :(.
But it was almost certainly my fault because I literally doused the indoor one AGAIN after this and I most likely overdid it and shouldn’t have gone in a second time. I didn’t do this to the outdoor one. He’s still going happily.
Probably way too much too late, as I nuked the indoor one with a second round less than a week after this round and that was probably much too much. It probably needed more time to recover, and it took a sudden turn after.
Definitely don’t do what I did and err on the side of less is more! I think if I had started sooner with the hydrogen peroxide this never would have happened and it would have been so fine.
If I had spaced out the hydrogen peroxide and used far less of it, my indoor calathea may have been saved in this case as well.
But the technique works, just don’t overdo it like I did with my second round!