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By cricketsong
Posts:  16
Joined:  Wed Jul 05, 2023 4:29 pm
#439695
I posted a while back that my ceph was turning pale. It's throwing a lot of new pitchers but there is almost no red on the plant and macro photos are showing tiny dots I cannot identify .
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Even with a jewelers loupe I cannot tell if these are insects or sand or something else. They don't look like spider mites or thrips or anything else tiny that I've seen in the past.

Pitchers are coming in deformed with small lids, no red, and dying before they get to full size.
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I live in Ontario, and just about the only thing I can get my hands on is Safer's End All, because most things are banned here. Is this okay to use on ceph's?

Any advice or experience with this problem would be greatly appreciated!!
By cricketsong
Posts:  16
Joined:  Wed Jul 05, 2023 4:29 pm
#439696
I'll add that I read on the Safer's bottle that is got a base made from potassium salts, so I'm guessing not safe for CPs. Apparently neem can now be purchased in Ontario, so I ordered some in the hopes that I can use neem oil to treat whatever this is.
By Huntsmanshorn
Posts:  932
Joined:  Wed Sep 03, 2014 6:32 am
#439723
Years ago (pre internet days. Yea, I know, don't rub it in) I had a similar problem with my first Ceph. Had no idea what I was doing and finally sprayed the heck out of the poor thing with some pest killer for roses (I know, right? Roses! What was I thinking!? smh) I bought, which wound up burning the plant horribly (don't do this), and then I decapitated it (also best avoided if possible) because it really, really, looked bad. Interestingly, the plant survived and finally grew into a really nice big beast of a Cephalotus, before I killed it in an entirely different way. Ah, the joys of the pre internet days!

Right! Right! Sorry for the ramble! You know how old people like to tell stories. Anyway, you should find something like BioAdvanced 3-In-1 Insect, Disease and Mite Control, or whatever similar stuff you can get up there in the Great White North, and give that a go. Waaaay better than Neem oil. I find that stuff to work better as a deterrent rather than a treatment after the fact. Esp. if your problem should turn out to be fungal, rather than insect or mite.
By anon
Posts:  37
Joined:  Wed Aug 30, 2023 3:19 am
#439734
No idea if it is in Canada but for basically any pest at all on CPs I use Monterey Garden Take Down Spray. Kills everything does not damage at all, and is 100% harmless as soon as it dries.
By cricketsong
Posts:  16
Joined:  Wed Jul 05, 2023 4:29 pm
#439773
Thanks for the suggestions folks, but the pesticides/products named are banned here, so I can't get any of them.

For the short term I pulled the top layer of substrate to remove the moss and replaced it with a pumice/gravel/perlite/inert sand mixture to offer better air flow and drainage around the pitchers and rhizome. Gave the plant a bit of a spray/rinse as well

Still hoping someone will recognize these symptoms so I can narrow down what the problem is.
By Z_Y
Posts:  177
Joined:  Wed Jun 24, 2020 10:19 pm
#439832
I had the exact pest on my cephs too, little red dots. I actually used the Avid Miticide from FlytrapStore here and it got rid of them pretty much immediately on both my cephs and my vfts.
By cricketsong
Posts:  16
Joined:  Wed Jul 05, 2023 4:29 pm
#439892
Z_Y wrote:I had the exact pest on my cephs too, little red dots. I actually used the Avid Miticide from FlytrapStore here and it got rid of them pretty much immediately on both my cephs and my vfts.

Thanks so much for this, it's nice to know someone else has encountered the same issue. Abamectin is banned in Ontario, so I cannot get Avid Miticide :roll: :( I guess I'll move forward with the neem...
By cricketsong
Posts:  16
Joined:  Wed Jul 05, 2023 4:29 pm
#440282
I thought I would post an update.

I purchased some pure cold pressed neem oil and made a 1% solution with distilled water and just a couple drops of dish soap to help with emulsion.

I fully saturated the ceph before lights out one evening, and then left it with no water in the tray for a few days so it could dry out.

I immediately noticed a difference. The new pitchers started to grow in more normally, and the plant seems no worse for wear after the treatment. I gave it a full week and I treated again with the same solution. I'm really hoping this has done the trick! I think that changing the top inch or so of substrate for a very chunky pumice/sand/gravel mix has also contributed to the improvement. Better air flow and also removal of any potential pests that were in the old top layer can't hurt.

I will get some pics in another few days as I monitor progress.
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By Panman
Location: 
Posts:  6215
Joined:  Wed Mar 04, 2020 8:41 pm
#440284
I never thought about removing the top layer, but that is a great idea. I've got some sarrs I'm treating for scale. I'll put the top layer of sphagnum off and burn it and give it multiple treatments so that it can get at the rhizome.
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By Camden
Location: 
Posts:  1703
Joined:  Mon May 23, 2022 9:25 pm
#440314
Panman wrote: Tue Sep 26, 2023 7:03 pm I never thought about removing the top layer, but that is a great idea. I've got some sarrs I'm treating for scale. I'll put the top layer of sphagnum off and burn it and give it multiple treatments so that it can get at the rhizome.
(I’m sorry for the off topic post guys)
How do you go about treating scale? I’ve got a hibiscus that just can’t get rid of it
Last edited by Camden on Wed Sep 27, 2023 7:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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By Panman
Location: 
Posts:  6215
Joined:  Wed Mar 04, 2020 8:41 pm
#440315
Camden wrote: Wed Sep 27, 2023 6:52 pm (I’m sorry for the off topic post guys) How do you go about treating scale? I’ve got a hibiscus just can’t get rid of it
Not very easily and not too successfully so far. I'm trying treatment with Spinosad then followed up a couple of days later with a 3 day drowning period. Rinse and repeat several times. I tried cleaning individually with alcohol, but it seemed to damage my sarrs.
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By ChefDean
Location: 
Posts:  9042
Joined:  Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:44 am
#440317
Camden wrote: Wed Sep 27, 2023 6:52 pm(I’m sorry for the off topic post guys)
How do you go about treating scale? I’ve got a hibiscus that just can’t get rid of it
For a garden plant that doesn't have the sensitivity of a carnivorous plant, find a systemic. Scale is armored, so it's tough to treat topically. But they're sucking insects so, if you can poison the sap of the plant, you'll have better success.
If you don't want to use chemicals, get ladybugs or lacewings. They are predatory to scale, and can be purchased online to ship right yo your door. I get mine from naturesgoodguys.com
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By Z_Y
Posts:  177
Joined:  Wed Jun 24, 2020 10:19 pm
#440324
I use BioAdvanced Rose and Flower Insect Killer for scale when I get it occasionally on my Helis. I haven't seen the spray damage the plants so seems safe for helis/neps at least.
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By cricketsong
Posts:  16
Joined:  Wed Jul 05, 2023 4:29 pm
#440580
Hello again, I've taken a few photos to post for update.

I am seeing major improvement, but pitchers still don't look as good as they did before this pest hit. I'll spray with the neem again soon.

After a few things of neem the new pitcher lids are less deformed. They are not yet 'normal' but they are less shrunken and curled.

The first pic is one of the pitchers that grew in before treatment, the next two pics are newer pitchers:
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I no longer see any little orange dots on the plant, and the red colours are coming back.
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I don't know if I'm outta the woods with your pest, but I think things are heading in the right direction!


Panman wrote:I never thought about removing the top layer, but that is a great idea. I've got some sarrs I'm treating for scale. I'll put the top layer of sphagnum off and burn it and give it multiple treatments so that it can get at the rhizome.
Hey Panman I hope it works for you! In my case there was a lot of cushion moss, so it might have been more an improvement to ventilation than anything, but it definitely hasn't hurt! Good luck with your sarracenias.
andynorth liked this
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