Haworthia Cooperi Truncata pups

An update on one of my attempts to root offsets from a haworthia cooperi truncata.  One of my original plants suffered a massive infestation of scale (a nasty pest), and in the process of waging the war I ended up taking off a lot of the dead/dying leaves, cutting off some sick roots, and repotting the mother plant in fresh soil.  In the process, I ended up removing two small offsets from the mother plant as long as I had it out of the soil and was butchering it.  I was worried that the offsets might be too small; they hadn’t started forming roots on their own yet, and weren’t very large… and they still had a bit of a problem with the pest infestation as you can see in the top image (the white spots).  They continued to shrivel and lost a few leaves each, but just when they neared the tipping point, I tried moving them from a gritty mix to a peat and perlite based soil, and they started rooting and rebounded.  Once they had roots, I could move from a topical treatment to a systemic pest control (which I also worried about, given how small the plants were… if it might be a shock to their system) but it seems to have worked.  Slowly but surely they’re thriving!

Typically grit SHOULD be better for rooting pups, but I’m guessing they might have needed a bit of the extra moisture that the peat held onto to encourage the roots to grow, and a medium that was a little more nutrient rich in order to help fight off the pests that were slowly sucking life out of the plant.

On the top was an image of the plants from November 23rd; the bottom is from today, January 16th.  They’ve plumped back up and added some new growth.

Sadly, the original mother plant continues to waste away, and may now be in an even smaller/sadder state than the offsets were.   My lesson here is that when it comes to pest infestations, you likely need to act swiftly and without reservation.  Better to hack away the sick parts and pull out the big guns then to hesitate out of fear of losing more of the plant than is necessary.  I rolled the dice on the mother plant and lost, but at least it looks like I was able to salvage parts of it that will eventually regrow.

 

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