Trunk rot? Portulacaria afra

LemonBonsai

Shohin
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So I picked this guy up at a nursery. Did the first prune on it, and noticed some brown in the center of some branches thay I cut off. I posted a pic of the worst one I saw, it was a knot that I carved away from the main trunk, and the brown spot in the middle is the darkest of all the spots that were on the tree. So is this rot? Something else? And if it is rot what do I do? On a tree this big, would the rot eventually take over the tree and kill it or would it have a chance of surviving? Or should I just cut it off as close to the base as I can get until I cant see any brown?

20210516_192135.jpg
 

Mycin

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I’d take a “wait-n-see” approach on this one. Why would it rot in a area like that? Seems more likely that it’s scar or some other physical feature. Don’t ruin a nice tree unless you absolutely have too, imo

E: I see this was from a knot you carved away, I’m really thinking this is a benign remnant of the regrowth..

“First, do no harm”
 

LemonBonsai

Shohin
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I’d take a “wait-n-see” approach on this one. Why would it rot in a area like that? Seems more likely that it’s scar or some other physical feature. Don’t ruin a nice tree unless you absolutely have too, imo

E: I see this was from a knot you carved away, I’m really thinking this is a benign remnant of the regrowth..

“First, do no harm”
I dont recall ever seen that with mine.
Yes this was a knot I carved away, further down the tree I carved away a bigger one that had no brown what so ever in the middle so thats why I was concerned, some of the top branches when I cut them the middle was not bright green like jades are supposed to be, there was a dark spot in the middle that vaguely resembled brown. If it is rot im thinking it must have gotten in the trunk somewhere in the canopy through a cut in the bark. Because the knot at the very bottom of the tree looked nice and green. I will be repotting it today to get it out of its nursery compact soil anyways so I will check the roots to see if theres any signs of rot, if all else fails I could chop it until I see no brown spots, and hopefully it hasnt come from the roots.

Does anyone have experience with if big succulent trees can recover from trunk rot? If it is trunk rot could the tree recover somehow? If I put diluted hydrogen peroxide in the water so the tree sucks up that up it might kill bacteria?

(I will wait and see unless someone says otherwise that has alot of experience with port afra, and I wont water for a while when I repot)

Thanks for your replies so far
 

Forsoothe!

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My limited experiences with succulent rot is it is fatal and pretty fast, or at least when I see it, it's too late.
 

Forsoothe!

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No, but what do I know? Hollow stems are not common, but not unusual either, some varieties of Forsythia as an example. I don't know that big old Portulacaria don't all have hollow parts.
 

LemonBonsai

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No, but what do I know? Hollow stems are not common, but not unusual either, some varieties of Forsythia as an example. I don't know that big old Portulacaria don't all have hollow parts.
Thats fair, however the stem isnt hollow id say its more the actual ppant that is brown in the middle, but same difference lol. I also thought it might be the sap of the tree (not sure if they have sap this color)
 

just.wing.it

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When I cut branches off...the green part usually just dries up and blends in with the "bark".
They don't really roll callous tissue like a real tree, at least not that I've seen on my small ones.
 

Forsoothe!

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Almost all heartwood is dark colored. Soft is a problem.
 

Forsoothe!

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Wood is what we call the hard stuff inside ~trees~. Trees is something that grows big enough to be called ~trees~. I'm sure there is a specific definition for wood, and one for the stuff that is in the center of old, big succulents.
 

LemonBonsai

Shohin
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Well I will monitor the health of the tree for right now, will repot it as well. I notoced when I bought the tree there was maybe 30 leaves that were yellow (this is out of probably over 600 leaves though) and i fogured it was old leaves. The leaves on the tree right now are very strong, dont pull off or fall off easily so ill see how things go and if need be update it further here.

Thanks again for all the replies
 

Snorlax99

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Usually with P Afra if it's rotten the trunk or branch feels squishy and pliable to the touch, and you don't see green if you cut. That looks perfectly healthy to me.
 

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