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Sunday, June 22, 2008

Should I do it?

This crested THING (I like to call it that because it looks monstrous to me) is so top-heavy, I want to cut the top off and plant it directly into soil. What do you think...should I try it??? I like the color and shape of the top, and I think it would look really splendid in a pot all alone, basking in it's own glory...without that green stalk underneath it.

17 comments:

Cindy said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the whole point of grafting to have a hardy foundation for a delicate plant that might not survive on its own?

I would repot the whole thing in a larger pot, and maybe decorate around the base plant with something that will hide it just a bit.

Tootsie said...

can't hurt to try! are cacti like aloe...do they need to be left to cure for a few hours before you set them in the dirt? not sure about succulents...they seem to be your forte though!

Fern said...

Is the crested part a flower or some sort of mutated part of the plant itself? Will cutting off the crested part kill the remaining plant? If so, does that bother you?

I say if the crested part is not a flower, and it cutting it off will either not kill the "host" or you don't care if the host dies, then go for it!

Claude said...

The top of that grafted cactus is producing some clorophyll, so it will survive on it's own roots. You could certainly re-root it, but it's usually safer to plant the whole graft into a deep pot, so that it's under the soil line. The scoin, that's the bottom part of the graft, would then turn into a giant root. These grafts only last a few years max anyway, as scar tissue builds up between them and slowly starves the graft... planting it low enough in the soil allows the soil to touch the top part of the graft, and naturally put a few roots out of it's own. The ones that don't produce clorophyl need to be regrafted to keep them alive.

Julie said...

Thanks for your ideas everyone! I think I may try Claudes ideas to plant the whole host under the soil to it can be a big root! That is such a great idea, Claude!!! I know I have seen these crested parts living alone, without the host plant, but I just felt kinda bad slicing the thing apart like that...and this way the host plant will stay alive...just as a root!!! Gotta go shopping for a new large pot now!!!

Julie said...

Cindy- I will have to look this up...I had always thought they just put these colorful, or frilly parts on top of an otherwise boring euphorbias, to sell them! I can see that if it didn't have enough chlorophyll though, maybe it wouldn't survive!!!

Claude said...

The bottom part is a hylocereus... a pretty impressive plant on it's own... It can produce great flowers and eddible fruit, but it has to be pretty huge to do it. Occasionally you see the fruit in asian markets, marketed as Dragon Fruit...

Julie said...

I am finding two different bits of info regarding these things. First, mine does have a scar mark betweeen the bottom and top parts, which leads me to believe it was grafted, and then I find that these straight euphorbias can suddenly start going crazy and do the crested thing all on their own!!! I have no idea, which way mine is, except for that supposed scar mark (but yet maybe this mark is just a natural occurance if the plant just suddenly started taking off on it's own??? LOL. Succulents can be very hard to figure out, they are just plain crazy in looks and growth!

Teri C said...

It looks like it was grafted on the top so I think taking it off and planting it would work just fine. Cacti ar SO forgiving.

Fern said...

If you don't want the euphorbia and mostly want the crested part, what about making a clean cut a few inches below the crested part (i.e. with a few inches of the euphorbia still attached). That way you'll be sure to have a part that produces chlorophyll but you'll mostly have the plant you like?

Fern said...

p.s. I've read the same thing as Cindy, that the colorful parts are usually grafted on because they can't produce chlorophyll on their own.

Sue said...

What Claude says seems to make sense. Either way, this one looks like some mutant experiment gone awry. I would bury the cactus for the sake of the crested euphorbia's dignity.LOL

My LIttle Family: said...

Seems to me someone went to a lot of trouble to graft it and the plant seems to be thriving. I say if it ain't broke then don't fix it. Just my two cents. Vickie

Julie said...

OHHH...You guys are all so awesome helping me to make a decision as to what to do!!! Thankyou, so much! I like Fern's idea as well, where I would keep a peice of the bottom cactus under the soil. That way I wouldn't have to have as deep a pot. YES!!! Sounds perfect. Thanks again to all of you wonderfullyt fantastic people!!! Love ya!
Julie

Julie said...

Oh BTW...LOL, Sue!!! I agree!!! Ha ha ha!!!

Claude said...

having grafted a few cacti myself... here's a few things to consider... The grafted plants that you see that are bright orange, pink, etc are plants that produce no chlorophyl of their own... This plant is showing green, and therefore has some chlorophyl and will survive on it's own... there are many reasons to graft plants... some plants grow better grafted, some grow quicker or larger grafted, some plants will bloom earlier grafted( ie: golden barrels are usually 25 ot 50 years old before they bloom on their own roots, but when grafted to a cereus will bloom at 10 years old) , some cacti have roots that survive fine in the wild, but are almost guaranteed to rot in a pot...

This plant was grafted because it looked wierd that way, and that's what they were going for...

really, IMHO... planting the scoin underground is the option I would choose, but cutting it and rerooting may work too...

Julie said...

Hey...thanks Claude...you are a gem for giving me all this wonderful info! I will do as you suggest and plant the whole stalk without cutting! I think the top part will then begin to really grow and flourish!!! Can't wait to see! Will probably do it this weekend when I have time to get a new pot.

Vickie...More than likely this thing was created on an assembly line somewhere in China...I am actually gonna do it a favor to live free of this restictive stalk someone placed under it, if they did! I think so, anyway. I believe it will end up spreading out and having a much better life after this!!! XXXOOO
Julie