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  • 1st Up pot - Are these roots healthy? rotted? mature? (DE)

    1st up pot, cutting was rooted in DE, cutting took 22 days to show the first root, and its been 37 days since the first root showed. Total number of 59 days. Roots shielded from lights, watered every 2-3 days, water shaken up and down to drain all standing water. Roots started to turn brownish, searches turn up mixture of responses from "roots are rotted", "its natural, roots brown up as they lignify and mature", "white fat roots good, brown skinny roots bad". On uppot roots felt strong, I thought the roots that were coming out the bottom holes of the cups would get cut off as I pulled, but those slid right out. 1st time my virgin eyes have laid eyes on fig roots, so I have no basis of comparison and determining rotted roots from healthy ones. Hoping I didn't screw this up, and this cutting is headed downhill. Is this cutting headed for doom?
    Zone 10b, Southern California

  • #2
    Great roots!

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    • #3
      Perfect roots. Should do well. Don't be too scared to water now. When I up-pot from DE like this, I make sure the media is plenty moist and then water again when is starts to get dry (a few days to a week later). Each time you water, you can safely maintain the moisture level a little higher each time. Once mature and growing again after up-pot figs can handle more moisture in the media.
      Last edited by BrandonP; 01-14-2020, 04:29 PM.
      Zone 8b, College Station, TX
      Wish List: Maltese Beauty, CLBC.

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      • #4
        Looks good to me. The first time that I rooted in DE, my roots looked like that and I was concerned. But, everyone here set me straight.
        Zone 7a - Dover, DE Wishlist: ALL OF THE FIGS!
        Seriously : LdA, CLBC, CC, all CdD, All LSU, Black Ischia

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        • #5
          *sigh of relief.... Thanks for the input. I was getting worried, because my roots looked so much browner than the pics of roots I found on searches on the site.
          Zone 10b, Southern California

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          • #6
            I wish mine would quit dying at this point. Smh. So frustrating.
            Willamette Valley Oregon, zone 8b. WL: zaffiro, Black Tuscan, rodgrod, campaniere, CLBC, de la Gloria, thermalito, del sen juame gran, Sangue dolce, St Martin, Jack Lily, vincenzo, verdolino, hmadi, Syrian dark, raasti

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            • machonachos
              machonachos commented
              Editing a comment
              Is this the critical point from here on out Sod? I read your post about the troubles you had transitioning from DE to potting mix. Sorry for the losses you had at up-pot. Thank you for sharing what your learned. If mine hopefully makes it past this point, it will not be without the wealth of knowledge you and others shared on the site here. I hope your future ones make it past this point!

            • Sod
              Sod commented
              Editing a comment
              Yep. I had killer roots on several larger cuttings, more developed than these even, and they ended up failing because (I think) my potting mix wasn’t coarse enough to allow air flow and water drainage.

            • emik
              emik commented
              Editing a comment
              I'm with you Sod. My cuttings keep dying...mainly upon up potting (now that I have started sifting my DE). I feel like I have a very well-draining mix, but the shock seems to do most of mine in. Maybe this is the universes way of making sure I don't have more fig trees than sunny real estate in my yard

          • #7
            This is what mine looked like (it made it)
            Click image for larger version

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            Zone 7a - Dover, DE Wishlist: ALL OF THE FIGS!
            Seriously : LdA, CLBC, CC, all CdD, All LSU, Black Ischia

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            • stealthmayhem
              stealthmayhem commented
              Editing a comment
              THat was after only 5 weeks in DE. It is still very small because that pic was taken back in November. I have it in my office babying it through the winter.

            • emik
              emik commented
              Editing a comment
              stealthmayhem did you use a regular 24 oz cup? Or, something bigger. When do you start adding fertilizer? Even the cuttings that appear to have roots for 6+ weeks have never been that plentiful.

            • stealthmayhem
              stealthmayhem commented
              Editing a comment
              18 oz cup, 5 weeks in DE, slits on sides, no rooting hormone, no fertilizer. Used a heat mat and T8 5000K Shop lights. Technically it wasn't 5 weeks, it was 40 days. which is 5 weeks and 5 days.

          • #8
            I believe that this is what you WANT..well calloused roots.
            Piney Point Village, Zone 8b

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            • #9
              Bellefleurs I can breath better now. My untrained eye couldn't differentiate between "rot" or "calloused".

              That being said. Should one wait for brown, matured, calloused roots before uppotting?
              Zone 10b, Southern California

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              • Bellefleurs
                Bellefleurs commented
                Editing a comment
                That is a great question. I have been advised to always wait as long as possible, until roots pretty much fill the cup.

            • #10
              Keep us posted on your progress. I've got some up pottings coming up pretty soon too. Good Growing!
              Tony. Pickens county, SC zone 7b
              WL: Atreano; Azores dark; Brooklyn White/Dk; Florea; Golden Riverside; Lattarula; LSU Early Improved Celeste;any of the Maltese or Italians; Napolitana: Tiger Panache

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              • #11
                One thing that could help with the DE transition is make sure that you are using a well-draining mix. DE is super well-draining and is what the plant is used to, so use a mix with a lot of perlite, I believe someone once suggested as much as 50% perlite. I'm not quite using that much, but much more than I otherwise would use for a normal pot. In the future when you up-pot to something bigger, you could go to a more traditional potting mix.
                Jason. San Diego, CA - Zone 10A

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                • machonachos
                  machonachos commented
                  Editing a comment
                  So after this cutting hopefully becomes a tree, I'm planning to go with Gary's Top Pot on the recommendation from another member here, which is basically 50%/50% pumice and peat moss. It's great for moisture retention for hot southern california weather, but probably not the best for seedlings. So for the first few uppots I bought a bag of ProMix HP, since its drains better (I was scared of over-watering). I believe the ProMix HP has about 30% Perlite. You think I should mix in a bit more Perlite?

                • JCT
                  JCT commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I do not have any experience with ProMix, so I cannot really say. I only had moderate results transitioning out of DE before I started adding a lot more perlite to my mix, but I haven't been doing it for a long time and am just going off someone's recommendation. Hopefully someone with more experience with this can chime in.

                • BrandonP
                  BrandonP commented
                  Editing a comment
                  @machanachos @JCT
                  I have near 100% up-pot success with a mix of the following: 25% DE, 25% Perlite, 50% peat moss. Add in a little bit of earthworm castings (and even a little slow release fertilizer if you want) and crumble up part of a mosquito dunk and mix it all up. I make up about 2-3 gallons of this at a time and use it each time I up-pot. I wet the mixture down to where you could squeeze a little out (not dripping wet, but if you squeeze you still get some out). Easy to make at home. Keeping the other components dry (DE, Perlite, peat moss) before mixing them allows you to store them a long time without fear of an infestation by bugs/gnats.

                  With roots like yours in the photo, I would be very confident of success with up-pot.

                  My up-pot failures out of DE have all been when the roots were too immature (cuttings only 3-4 weeks old) and my mix was too dry.

              • #12
                I found this searching for a photo of a calluses fig cutting. Might help

                GregMartin
                Senior Member
                • Join Date: Feb 2015
                • Posts: 411

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                #11
                12-16-2015, 07:33 PM
                To the question about callus tissue, it's a form of unorganized plant tissue that develops to heal wounds. The callus tissue can then differentiate to form roots, so scoring a cutting can allow more areas for roots to form from. On many cuttings I've noticed that roots will only form at the bottom edge of the cutting where the callus forms from the damage at the cut. Scoring those cuttings provides more damage that then translates into callus, then roots. With figs I don't really think this is necessary as they seem to send roots out all over the cutting where moisture is maintained, but for other cuttings like the citrus and grape cuttings I've sometimes rooted this provides a definite boost.

                An interesting thing about callus is that it can also produce shoots if the hormone balance is correct. Makes me think that you may be able to create shoots without a bud if you apply the right concentration of the right hormone to callus tissue you can form with scoring if you keep that tissue moist. That might come in handy, no?

                Millersville Maryland
                zone 7b

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                • DerekWatts
                  DerekWatts commented
                  Editing a comment
                  In some circumstances, I think so. I recently had a tree I airlayered, which died because there were no viable buds below the nodes I removed. It's a painful experience watching an otherwise healthy tree die, perhaps if I had applied BAP to the bottom callous, I could have saved it. It would be interesting to know.

              • #13
                So I came home today and saw this. Leaves drooping. They were perfectly perked up this morning before I left. Searches on the site here coming up diagnosis such as transplant shock, over-watering, under-watering. This happened all in a 24 hour period. Yesterday around this time up-potted. This morning, looked like everything was fine. Got home tonight and leaves are droopy.

                I could add more water, but don’t want to over-water. I could put under heat mat to dry it back out, but afraid it’s been under-watered....figgin’ is tough

                Advice?
                Last edited by machonachos; 01-14-2020, 11:46 PM.
                Zone 10b, Southern California

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                • emik
                  emik commented
                  Editing a comment
                  This happens to me a LOT (in fact, I have one that I uppotted 2 days ago that is doing that now). In the past, eventually all of the leaves dropped and I didn't see any new leaves. I still kept them, lightly watered with H2O2, spaced about 1 - 2 weeks (for fungus gnats). Never re-leafed, and eventually I put them in the outdoor cheapo grow tent/green house. When I tugged on the cutting it didn't move a lot/ come out, so I am hoping it is continuing to grow roots. I figure there is nothing to lose by trying... We'll see come spring.

                • ginamcd
                  ginamcd commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Did you pre-moisten your mix, or did you water after up-potting? I go with a pre-moistened mix (barely able to squeeze a few drops out), then wait at least a week to water again. This ensures a moist, yet still fluffy environment for the roots and I haven't lost a single one since my first DE cuttings when one died as a result of the DE getting too dry before up-potting. If you pre-moistened or watered after up-potting, I would let it be for at least a week.

                  And any chance humidity level changed when you up-potted? Different room? Covered vs uncovered?

                • Figtron
                  Figtron commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I shocked a cutting like this by over watering on accident.
                  Leaves fell off but recovered about a month later.
                  it was in a clear cup and I could see some of the roots died but other new ones grew.

                  I guarantee I killed a whole bunch by over watering with my first batch of figs.
                  Seems some varieties start out pretty sensitive, other tougher types managed to put up with my nonsense in the beginning... but only 5 that first go round haha, oh the pain.

              • #14
                I pre-moistened the mix. However when squeezed more than a few drops came out. Fluffed back up. Filled halfway with the ProMix HP . Put the cutting in, spread out the roots. Then filled it up to the top. Humidity hasn’t changed. Same room. Same conditions. Same LED lighting. 5000k White led, blue led (450m), red led (620 Nm). At approx 8,500 lux with a lux meter, with that spectrum should be a little over 200 umol/s/m2. 14 hours on/10 hours off. Room is avg 68 degrees, with a low of 65 degrees, high of 69 degrees. Humidity avg 67%, with a low of 65%, high of 69%.
                Zone 10b, Southern California

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                • ginamcd
                  ginamcd commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Then it could be just a little up-potting shock. Leave them be for a few days and see what happens.

              • #15
                Originally posted by Rudy View Post
                An interesting thing about callus is that it can also produce shoots if the hormone balance is correct. Makes me think that you may be able to create shoots without a bud if you apply the right concentration of the right hormone to callus tissue you can form with scoring if you keep that tissue moist. That might come in handy, no?
                That is one of the first steps in tissue culture......developing undifferentiated callus tissue, that can then be "coerced" into making roots, shoots, etc, depending on what growth regulators, and how much.
                Zone 7a - Dover, DE Wishlist: ALL OF THE FIGS!
                Seriously : LdA, CLBC, CC, all CdD, All LSU, Black Ischia

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                • Noah Mercy
                  Noah Mercy commented
                  Editing a comment
                  And feed it carbs (sugars) through the roots until foliage can be established... I do have that old homemade laminar flow hood from when I was growing mushrooms... I think I better clone myself first though, lol!

              • #16
                Plugged in the heat mat under it this morning. Sacred to go home tonight and see what happened....
                Zone 10b, Southern California

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                • #17
                  How deep did you place the cutting when you up potted it? I mean compared to where it was in the rooting medium?
                  Tony. Pickens county, SC zone 7b
                  WL: Atreano; Azores dark; Brooklyn White/Dk; Florea; Golden Riverside; Lattarula; LSU Early Improved Celeste;any of the Maltese or Italians; Napolitana: Tiger Panache

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                  • #18
                    I planted it just a little bit deeper in comparison to the rooting medium. Just enough to bury the tiny bud where a small leaf is sprouting from.
                    Zone 10b, Southern California

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                    • #19
                      Best thing u can do right now based on what I can tell from the moisture level I see in the picture is leave it be and do not water again until the soil starts to dry out more. My guess is transplant shock. Suggest to let it sit for a few days without adding any water. If you feel you must do something, spray the leaves a couple times with straight water or a diluted foliar feed.
                      -Luke S. at Keesler AFB, 9a
                      -SAH Dad, gardener, fan of comedy, philosophy, and the deep dive on YouTube
                      -W/L: JN, CCN, Thermalito

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                      • #20
                        Originally posted by Lucrative View Post
                        Best thing u can do right now based on what I can tell from the moisture level I see in the picture is leave it be and do not water again until the soil starts to dry out more. My guess is transplant shock. Suggest to let it sit for a few days without adding any water. If you feel you must do something, spray the leaves a couple times with straight water or a diluted foliar feed.
                        Yep, I agree. I had quite a few do that after uppotting them. At least 20 of out 40 lost leaves completely in the first two weeks. After that, most (not all) started to grow back normally.
                        Zone 7a - Dover, DE Wishlist: ALL OF THE FIGS!
                        Seriously : LdA, CLBC, CC, all CdD, All LSU, Black Ischia

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                        • #21
                          Looks like you are a good rooter!, Here we don ot remove rooted cutting from the pop bag of DE it rooted in and instead slit the bag vertically several times and holding t together by wrapping paper towel all around, plant slit bag DE and all in a prepared hole in the uppot mix.this stresses new roots less for us here. But everyone wears his own kind of hat, they say! IMHO whatever works is good!
                          Z8A NC SANDHILLS

                          WISH LIST :CC, ZAFFIRO, CAMPANIERE

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                          • #22
                            Yeah from this point on, I'll just hang on and sit tight and hope for the best
                            Zone 10b, Southern California

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