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Dracaena

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2005
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by catlover on May 25, 2005 09:02 PM
I have a peace lily potted with ivy....just noticed last night that the ivy had sticky goop on the ivy and surrounding area....the ivy looked like it had what I would call little brown baby scale. So I totally took out all the ivy and discarded in the trash. This morning I looked at my dracaena planted with the ivy way on the other side of the two connecting rooms and low and behold the same sticky yuck. [Eek!] ...I cut out all the ivy and discarded....looked on the underside of the dracaena leaves and the same sticky stuff is balled in several areas. Did not see the scale on the dracaena but did see a few on the ivy. I took a wet sponge (now dedicated to this plant) and wiped the sap off.....NOW WHAT???? and how did it spread from one side of the house to the other???? These plants have been grouped with the ivy for nearly a year. Where the dracaena leaf tips stretch to there is sap on the window counter, so it has been dripping for awhile now. Is it from the scale???? or another problem. And where did the little monster scale come from???? HELP!!!
Is there some chemical or treatment to save the dracaena...does the soil need to be treated??
What about my other plants???? I have 5 cats...is this sap poisonous???HELP!!! [perplexed] [kitty]

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by phoenix on May 25, 2005 09:19 PM
[wayey] catlover,
[tears] to hear about your plant problem.
I looked this up in the forum I hope this helps
Small infestations can be removed by touching each insect with a cotton swab dipped in alcohol. Scales suck your plants juices, stunting the plants growth and they secrete a sticky honeydew which attracts ants and other pests. If it becomes necessary, spray or dip using malathion as directed.

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"If you want to talk bollocks and discuss the meaning of life,you're better off downing a bottle of whiskey.That way you're drunk by the time you start to take yourself seriously"
by catlover on May 25, 2005 09:30 PM
I have malathion....but I don't actually see anything on the dracaena....I only saw the scale looking critters on the ivy which is GONE now...good riddens [Razz]

The sap is mainly on the bottom and sides of the leaves. Do I treat the soil too?...if so with what...the same malathion? will they climb out of the pot to other plants?
This is totally freaking me out! Are they crawling all over the house???....I think that microbiology class isn't helping. [perplexed] [Big Grin]

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by phoenix on May 25, 2005 09:40 PM
quote:
This is totally freaking me out! Are they crawling all over the house???....
I can see you running thru your house swatting and spraying everything [Big Grin] [Big Grin] I'm not sure if you should treat the soil. I probably would, just to be on the safe side, but then again is the treatment going to harm the plant if it touches the roots? [shocked] oh my gosh I'm probabaly making you even more frantic!! I'm sorry
I'll run around the forum and see if i can find anymore info for you

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y203/lilpuppolo/
"If you want to talk bollocks and discuss the meaning of life,you're better off downing a bottle of whiskey.That way you're drunk by the time you start to take yourself seriously"
by phoenix on May 25, 2005 09:44 PM
catlover try this http://www.ortho.com/

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y203/lilpuppolo/
"If you want to talk bollocks and discuss the meaning of life,you're better off downing a bottle of whiskey.That way you're drunk by the time you start to take yourself seriously"
by pcgrav on May 25, 2005 09:57 PM
Since scales are actually 1/8 inch long insects I'm sure thay just simply crawled across to the other side of the room. I don't think you have to worry about anything but your plants(but THAT'S enough) --there are products called root pesticide spikes that will treat the soil but I can't find a place right off that sells them; check your local nursery-- the plant itself can be washed with an insecticidal soap if the infestation is too bad otherwise use a cotton ball and alcohol and if you see the "balls" use a small brush and gently brush them away...

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 - Each day is a new beginning...What you begin is your choice.
 - The pleasure you receive from life is equal only to the attitude you put into it.
by catlover on May 26, 2005 12:44 AM
Thank you Phoenix and Tricia!

These little things were not 1/8 inch...they were like 1 mm. brown...really little.

Thinking about it...the plants are in two seperate garden windows and I open up those windows quite a bit....talking with Jiffy she thinks that if the seal wasn't good enough or the window was open they could come in that way. What a relief that was to hear. To think those stinken things crawled all over the house makes me itch.ewwwwe!!! I got up into those windows this morning and scrubbed the heck out of those counters and windows.

I am just making the assumption that it is scale since I know the ivy had a few on them. I know for sure it isn't aphids. I don't see anything on them except those little specks/balls of goo. I placed the two pots outside and washed them and the dracaena with soapy water using a sponge and the ants are having a hay day on the dracaena pot even thou I wiped it down. In the brighter light I see a few needle point holes in some of the leaves.

What time of year do you propagate dracaena? Right now it has one main stem with three branches off that with all the foliage. Can I just top the 3 branches(throw the tops away)??? will it come back? if so how long? Cutting it back I would only have to treat the stems instead of all the foliage. Is it worth the try or will I kill it completely?
[kitty] [perplexed]

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by pcgrav on May 26, 2005 01:23 AM
From what you described I do think it is scale; the book I was reading from said 1/8 inch but I thought that was kinda big myself. My dragon tree is a member of the draceana family. I have repotted it at anytime of the year that it needed it but mostly in the spring. Its 22yrs old. bought it on the clearance shelf at K-Mart when my oldest was 6 months old. Since then it has outgrown several pots; been divide into two pots; and has just this season been reunited into a HUGE new pot. I would NOT recomend cutting the tops completely off(although that's just me) I would leave it out for a while if that's possible and keep it washed with the alcohol and soapy water and give it a chance. I looked on gardensalive and I think they have an organic insectcide that might treat it pretty well if you want to look at that... GOOD LUCK!!!!!!

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 - Each day is a new beginning...What you begin is your choice.
 - The pleasure you receive from life is equal only to the attitude you put into it.
by catlover on May 26, 2005 01:50 AM
Thanks Tricia....I will leave it outside and keep treating...I will check out garden's alive and see what they have just in case.

I think I'm going to hose down the side of the house with a soapy solution while I am at it.
Thank you again, Catlover [kitty]

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by pcgrav on May 26, 2005 01:55 AM
[thumb] [Wink] My Pleasure!!!

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 - Each day is a new beginning...What you begin is your choice.
 - The pleasure you receive from life is equal only to the attitude you put into it.
by Will Creed on May 27, 2005 02:31 AM
I tried to post this last night, but the system was down

Wow, is this ever a crazy thread!

Catlover, please calm down. The scale insects will not attack you or your cats tonight while you are sleeping. They survive only on plant tissue; not fur, human flesh, or even soil.

Scale is often found on ivy and on peace lilies, but rarely on corn plants. If you have removed and discarded the ivy, then you have probably eliminated te problem, other than the leftover stickiness. However, you should check the undersides of your peace lily leaves.

Dabbing with alcohol loaded q-tips is an exercise in futility because it only treats the ones you can see. The juveniles are too tiny to see, especially when they are hiding.

Malathion is overkill and is much more likely to harm you and your cats than scale.

A thorough spraying with a cocktail of rubbing alcohol, water and liquid soap is most effective. (You can drink the leftover when you are done - J/K!)

Scale insects move very imperceptibly. If they crossed the room it was because they hitched a ride on something (one) else. But that is unlikely, as is their coming in through the window.

They were probably on the ivies when you purchased them, but in such limited numbers that you (or I) would not notice them. As conditions favorable to their development occurred, then their population began to reproduce as they had all-night sex orgies. The honeydew they manufactured was what finally attracted your attention.

Anyway, you seem to have busted them, so you should be able to sleep tonight with my firm assurance that none of them will sneak into your bed tonight.

Sleep well and call me in the morning if you have any questions.

Dr. Will

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