How To Protect Your Plants From Root Rot

If you live in Southern California or are planning to move there, it’s important to be aware of root rot and its dangers. The first time you’re on a boat in standing water, it is easy to ignore a small plant floating on top of the surface. However, as time passes, you will want to pay more attention to your water plants. Controlling and preventing water damage can prevent further loss of aquatic life and reduce risk of disease to fish and plants. Here are some tips for keeping your water plants healthy through the winter and spring:

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Protect your water plants. Cover them with a plastic cover during the day and remove them at night. Water conditions that favor root growth are usually found during the daytime. When leaves begin to drop, it is a sign of water stress. This stress can lead to fungal infections, root rot and other diseases. To prevent this from happening, it is best to protect your water plants through the winter.


Remove dead and damaged leaves on a daily basis. Overfertilizing water plants in the winter will stunt their growth and cause many water problems throughout the year. If you are fertilizing your water plants, use an organic fertilizer and make sure to not apply more than 1 tablespoon per gallon. Do not over-fertilize, water restrictions are often necessary to control algae.


Keep your plants well watered, but do not drown them. Make sure your water ponds and planters have adequate drainage. Algae will grow and thrive in water that is stagnant or has no circulation of air. If leaves start to turn yellow and fall, it may be time to remove the plant from the water. If the water is still not clean enough, it could spread bacteria and diseases to your plants.


Keep dead leaves and twigs from falling on the ground. Water your water plants thoroughly when you water them and keep the soil around the base of the plant moist. Thatch can build up easily if the soil is dry. Moisture will also help keep the roots warm during colder temperatures. This will help stop the loss of leaves on the ground.


Root rot can occur if your water plants are over-watered. Excess moisture during winter can damage your water plants. Excess snow also freezes over leaves, stems and other parts of the plant. When leaving thaw and begin to break off, this can also cause damage to your plants’ health.


Preventative measures such as checking for excess moisture and checking for fungus growth are important to avoid having a damaged root system by the middle of winter. Healthy roots will continue to grow throughout the year. To detect whether the root ball of your plant has developed a black spot, squeeze a finger in the center of the ball and touch the inside wall of the hole with your finger. If you find that a small mass of black goop has developed on the inside wall, your plant has probably developed a root problem.


To prevent your plants from becoming damaged in the winter months, follow these simple winter care tips. The first is to prevent the accumulation of leaves on the ground, which can cause damage to the roots of your plant. The second step is to water your plant well in the evening hours. Watering in the evening can help to keep fungus growth at bay and preserve the health of your plant through the night. Finally, you should prune your plant often during the winter season to help it survive the cold winter weather.