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Mother in Law's Tongue


I received a new Mother in Law's Tongue plant from eBay recently. I've noticed that small wrinkled patches were forming on the leaf surface after a few days only. Having lived with them for a week now, they have developed into huge light green, wrinkled areas covering around 60% of affected leaves. 

Any ideas what it could be?

The plant has been moved into the south facing green house, to get plenty of light. Then brought indoor during the night, to prevent cold. I haven't watered the plant, trying to avoid root rot. The soil from 3 inches below the surface feels fairly dry to the touch, although when I first got the plant, it felt slightly moist.

The ebay seller said to cut off the affected leaves, but this seems drastic. I did it on one leaf, and the wound has closed up over the past two days. 

Online articles and videos have a lot of conflicting information with regard to Light, Water and Temperature. Our house temperature fluctuates quite a lot, from fairly cold during the night, to boiling when the heating is on.

Thanks a lot for any advice.



  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 3,277
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  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 82,800

    Place your Mother in Law's Tongue on a sunny windowsill indoors and leave it there - water it once a week in the summer, and give it little more than a dribble once a month at the most in the winter.  Leave it in the same pot until it is literally bursting out of it.  It will reward you well.  It is as tough as old boots as long as it gets sunshine and no frost.

    I've grown them very successfully for nearly 40 years image

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • TimSTimS Posts: 4

    Thanks for the quick responses. I'd love to see a photo Dovefromabove!

    Just to reply to a couple of comments - It's been indoors for as long as I've had it, approx 2 weeks. Soil is bone dry for the top inch. Below that is a little damp, but I haven't watered it since getting it. I pulled out a small new growth today, which was soggy. None of the other larger leaves are soggy though, so would that indicate root rot?!

    I tried leaving it on the sunny windowsil, but maybe I should just leave it there. Do you think some of the wrinkles and brown patches could be from scorching by the sun in the greenhouse? It gets very hot in there, facing south. I've had to remove Areca Palm from in there as several of the leaves turned brown!

    Thanks again.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 82,800

    It might have been a bit too hot in there, if it hadn't been used to it - maybe give it a bit of shade until it toughens up - my current one is on a west-facing windowsill so good light but only direct sunshine in the afternoons which is suiting it fine, but I have had them on south-facing windowsills in the past which were equally fine.  This one is immediately above a radiator so mornings and evenings in the winter it's toes get quite warm and it doesn't mind that at all, neither does it seem to mind the heating not being on during the day.

    I would give yours a bit of shade in the hottest part of the day until it toughens up, and keep it fairly dry.  Do you have somewhere in the house which would suit, rather than the greenhouse?

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • I bought one of these plants today and it looks as if it could be divided into two, can I do this ? if i can how do I do it ? and when is the best  time ? Thanks in advance for all the helpful info I'm going to get image 

  • TimSTimS Posts: 4

    Christine, you can defo split them up. The ones I had, had root rot, so I split them, cut the effected roots off, planted a couple of the leaves without any roots at all, and they are all doing really well, having grown really big, strong root balls. I keep them in REALLY well draining soil (soil with small stones and other chunky bits) now, to prevent rotting, from accidently over watering. And I keep them on a sunny window that doesn't get drafts.

    Good luck!

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