Codonanthe diseases, pests & problems

Problems with codonanthe

Codonanthe is a trailing suspension houseplant that only rarely has problems. Here are a few of the most common issues you’ll have when caring for Codonanthe.

The most common (though still hard to find) Codonanthe species are C. crassifolia and C. deviosana (which has 2 famous cultivars: ‘Pink’ and ‘Paula’. Similar problems affect both of these species.

→ Similar problems, similar solutions: issues with hanging Stephanotis

Dry edges on Codonanthe plant

This is a case of “dry air”. The stem can’t pump water to the leaves fast enough to counter transpiration in dry air.

  • Mist the plant often with a hand spray
  • Try to grow other plants nearby to create a “air moisture oasis”.
  • Set a mini-fountain in the vicinity.
  • Another way is to simply a put the pot atop a tray with wet clay pebbles. Water will evaporate, raising air moisture.

Codonanthe turning yellow and flimsy

Leaves sick codonantheThis is the sign of impending root rot. Stop watering immediately and wait for the clump to dry up almost entirely.

  • When soil feels dusty right to the center, water again but only a small amount.
  • Make sure you let the soil dry up before watering every time.

You can also take a drastic course and rinse everything out: soil, rotten root parts, etc. Let it dry out for at least two days and then repot in fresh soil or orchid mix.

Common pests on Codonanthe

  • White sticky blobs at leaf joints – mealybugs, a particular type of scale insect
  • Sticky glossy substance on leaves, leaves curling upaphids, which are relatively easy to deal with
  • Leaves seem dusty and start turning yellowred spider mite is what you’re up against

Leaves and fruits have tiny velvety hairs all about that help it fend off other pests, for example thrips.

Codonanthe leaves forming drops at the tip

Occasionally, especially the plant is watered at night, drops of fluid will appear along the edges of Codonanthe leaves.

  • This is a perfectly harmless process called “guttation“.
  • It is how the plant expels excess water during the night when roots are too wet.
  • In the case of this ant-attracting plant, this phenomenon doubles as a “food source” for ants.
  • If it happens repeatedly, try watering in the mornings instead.

→ Read also: how to care for Codonanthe

Images: CC BY-NC 4.0: Karina Avila, Dhébora Cardo