Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Mealybugs Nooooo!

The Pachypodium Bispinosum I bought some time ago has not been particularly happy. I noticed some time ago that the caudex was feeling a bit soft but wasn´t sure if it was rot or dehydration. After inspection yesterday I saw the whole plant was covered in mealybugs and it was time for action.

So now I have a soft trunked and mealy bug infested plant that is obviously not happy. Time to try and remove the bugs. I rinsed the plant with some soapy tepid water which removed most of the bugs but not all of them. I removed the plant from its pot and saw there were very few roots, especially in relation with the upper branches.

So I decided to give the plant a haircut. I removed the three big branches and with it most of the mealybugs. I made sure to remove all remaining bugs from the plant. Now it is going to dry out a for a couple of days and I am going to force it to hibernate by keeping it cooler and dryer. I don´t think there is rot in in the caudex and the caudex if fat enough to handle some drought. Hopefully this plant will start growing a healthy root system again in spring so it can support the new branches. I will be spending more time on bug patrol from now on. I would normally prune pachypodium at the beginning of the growing season and not the end but in this case I think it is wiser to take direct action.

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