Wounded Cacti

Nan's Nook : Archives : Botanicals : Cactus : San Pedro : Growing San Pedro
Posted by: DirtyWOP Mar 03 03, 10:22 AM GMT
is this rot?

Posted by: DirtyWOP Mar 03 03, 10:23 AM GMT
Is this mold?
Bad to plant?

Posted by: DirtyWOP Mar 03 03, 10:25 AM GMT
Now say I were to remove the affected regions and try to root.....
How would I cauterize the wounds so that they don't return?

Posted by: Nanook Mar 03 03, 10:33 AM GMT
The first pic looks like a rot infested wound. I would trim it clean.

That second pic shows some normal shrinking, some surface mold which really should not bother anything.... But what concerns me the the curling of the skin in on itself which is where serious rot can set in. Peel the dead curled skin back and trim it off. Talking the second photo, put in it some bright sunlight (sun and air kill rot _and_ mold). I would not re-cut that base, just a clean up trim to remove dead skin and to keep the wound open where light and air can get to it.

Posted by: DirtyWOP Mar 03 03, 11:28 AM GMT
So it shouldn't cause problems to try to root one of the orange-tinged cacti?
The cactus' are already beginning to scab up from the low humidity....
Should I peel off the scab in the orange areas, give air and light, and wait for the problem to go away before planting?

Also.....the best place I can think of for fresh air and light is outside, but it's below freezing out there.....is that bad for a non-rooted cactus that is only scabbing? If it can't go outside, then the best I can do for light and air is the windowsill, for now......

thanks for the help nan smile.gif

Posted by: Nanook Mar 03 03, 01:00 PM GMT
That orange stuff is not going to bother a thing. No need to worry about pulling that scab off (you can't anyway, you would have to cut)... Just prevent rot by trimming dead skin off the edges with a smooth sharp knife.

Windowsill should be ok wink.gif

Posted by: ion Apr 28 03, 08:58 PM GMT
This post is mostly a response to a PM. Please feel free to correct me if I made any errors. smile.gif

For rotted cacti (*) or normal cuttings:

*Make double sure you use a sterilized knife to cut away the bad end. I use one of those orange razor knife jobbies. I cut a little, wipe with alcohol, cut some more, wipe, etc. until there is no rot left at all (no brown in the pith or flesh)... then I wipe and cut another half inch or so off, just for good measure.

Just cut with a clean, sanitized razorknife for normal cuttings.

Rinse the cactus and wash your hands well!

*For cutting off rotten ends, wash the final cut surface with peroxide from the bottle. Let it foam up (it takes a moment for foam to start) for about 20 seconds or so then rinse thoroughly with cool water from the tap.

After cutting good or bad cactus, Sprinkle sulfur on the wound and rub it around (make sure your hands are clean) until there is an even coat of it over the slimy cut end.

Let the cut end be exposed to sunlight in a window for about 2 days, then put it outside in partial sun for another 4-6 days. By then, the scabbed area should be firm to a gentle squeeze from the edges. This means that it feels like the scab might crack if you were to squeeze too hard... this is perfect. If the scab wrinkles, let it sit another day or two. If it never gets firm, you may either just have a dehydrated cactus, too moist an air environment, or rot might be trying to happen. Check for spots by rubbing the sulfur layer and blowing it off.

When all is well, rub off the excess sulfur (you don't have to get it all... some is good for the plant) and set the cut end into a soft layer of fine soil that is over a layer of firmly packed, slightly damp soil. Press it down a bit. The soft stuff will compact and conform to the shape of your cut end, making a nice snug contact between the scab and the soil.

There should be enough room in the pot to put about 2 or 3 more inches of soil around the base of the cactus. Press the soil in at the valleys between the ribs, compacting it to hold the cactus firm. Pack the soil around it a bit, filling the pot to about 1/2 inch from the top. Add a layer of sand or smooth light-colored pebbles up to the rim of the pot. This reflects light away from the dark soil, back up to the cactus, keeping the soil cool in hot sunlight. It can also help stabilize the cutting.

Let the soil dry out. As the soil dries, it may pull away from the cactus a little. Just pack it back on there. Only water maybe once a week with air temperature water (let the bucket sit out where the cacti are). You might want to add about a tablespoon of bone meal to 5 gallons of water. This will add a bit of phosphate which promotes root development. (Kinda a token offering, being that bone meal phosphate isn't very soluble.)

Keep the pot wrapped in a light sheet, or buried in the ground. It should stay cool while the cactus is warm.

Press down on the cactus gently but firmly (I love that expression tongue.gif ) every few days. As long as there is no "give", you are golden. If there is some squishyness, tug gently on the cactus. If it comes out of the soil with ease (no roots), then check for rot visually and with your fingers. If rotting, cut again and repeat the process... though it may be a lost cause at that point.

I think that about covers cuttings. What do the big guys think? wub.gif


Posted by: MajorBuzz Mar 14 03, 01:34 PM GMT
Is it rot? If so, is it from over-watering. Any advise to save the plant is appreciated.

Posted by: Nanook Mar 14 03, 01:50 PM GMT
Looks like rot. You need to depot that cactus and have a look at the rest of the plant below the soil level. If it's invasive rot you need to get a clean sharp knife and remove the infected tissue and leave a clean smooth cut. Allow the plant to re-scab in moving air and light for a week, then repot it and go easier with the water wink.gif

Posted by: DirtyWOP Mar 14 03, 03:16 PM GMT
just out of curiousity, what type of cacti is that there?

Posted by: MajorBuzz Mar 14 03, 03:28 PM GMT
I believe it is a bridgesii.

Posted by: ion Mar 15 03, 12:14 AM GMT
Eek! Base rot! Worst place to have rot... do what Nan says, immediately. I would cut off a disk from the entire bottom of the cactus... and sulfur the thing up well before letting it scab.


Posted by: Voodoo Mar 14 03, 05:01 PM GMT
Im new to cacti so sorry if its a stupid question. I just got this pedro, and it has some red and white stuff on the top. Is it going to be OK? Pic is kind of low quality, but hey...thats what you get when you buy a thirty dollar digi-cam. biggrin.gif

Posted by: Nanook Mar 14 03, 05:20 PM GMT
The focus is off on the trouble spot, but that certainly does not look normal. Is it possible the tip had been damaged and some type of infection set in?

If the growing point is gone, you really have no choice but to cut off the bad spot, root it, then let it sprout new buds.

Better focus would help more. Best I can do looking at it here.

Posted by: Voodoo Mar 14 03, 05:24 PM GMT
This ones a little better. Thanks for the reply Nan. biggrin.gif

Posted by: Nanook Mar 14 03, 06:16 PM GMT
Looks bad, cut off the tip and root it. It will pop out new growing points smile.gif

Posted by: Voodoo Mar 14 03, 06:17 PM GMT
Thanks Nan, will do. wink.gif

Posted by: deckerd Mar 03 03, 05:30 PM GMT
I potted 6 Pachanoi's a month ago. Within the past two days two of these cacti have each developed a black spot on their tips about the size of an areol. I'm going to cut these off, but am worried about reoccurance. What are these cacti warts and how can i treat/prevent them?

Posted by: ShroomVator Mar 03 03, 05:39 PM GMT
It may be the start of rot, but I wouldn't worry about it.

Don't cut it off unless it gets worse - no need to traumatize your cactus. If it does get worse as a rot spot, cut it off cleanly and let it heal over.


Posted by: Nanook Mar 03 03, 06:43 PM GMT
I agree, no need to cut unless you see black diving under the skin and the surface getting soft.

Posted by: ion Mar 04 03, 02:57 PM GMT
That little tip area seems to get those spots quite regularly... I've seen it on quite a few cacti. If it is firm and raised (like a wart or something) leave it alone. If it gets bigger and the center of it becomes soft, go ahead and cut about 1/8th inch around it, removing all of the black part. Put some sulfur (sublimed sulfur or flowers of sulfur at the drug store) in the hole you made, just coating the slimy flesh.

Chances are, being at the gowth tip like that (where most of the energy of the cactus is going), the rot will be halted by the cactus's immune system. smile.gif

Look at me... pretending like I know about this stuff tongue.gif


Posted by: Whiskey Wonka Mar 04 03, 10:01 PM GMT
Hey Decker,

There were 3 of those things on my Pedros when i bought them. I picked at them til they came up, it was much like a ripe scab i guess bleah.gif

It hasnt come back yet after a week or so, and looks ok

Posted by: maryxmas Mar 23 03, 10:12 PM GMT
i got one of those on my san pedro, didnt knwo what it was and it was hard so i thought i couldnt be rot so i thought ill just leave it. well it spread like wild fire and now my entire cactus is covered with them. i took a cutting off the top a year ago and the lil black things are speckled inside the cacti to, all the way to the center of the cacti. dont know what they are but all i know is the cacti has been growing like shit since. id say get rid of it


Posted by: maryxmas Mar 23 03, 10:29 PM GMT
i posted your pic and a your descrition to a horticulturial website and see what they day. ill post the results


Posted by: Bob Roberts Mar 25 03, 05:47 PM GMT
mmm...It shouldn't be a problem. It's time to put them outside anyway, so a bright light should help it from developing. If it is a fungus and the type I'm thinking of, the fruiting bodies are yellow and stink as does the mycelium. They would probably show up pretty quickly you left them in a dark, damp place for a week or so.

Posted by: maryxmas Mar 25 03, 07:07 PM GMT
when mine developed it , it was in full sun outside in the middle of july.


Posted by: maryxmas Mar 25 03, 07:30 PM GMT
i also have an unrooted cutting i took from that cacti that has been sitting on my desk for over a year now. the black spots still are popping up every today, a year after infection and just lying on a desk. what ever it is it is freaking resistance, tried fungucides, alcohol, ect and nothing will stop it


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