An anguish of aspidistras

I have had a small number of aspidistras for a few years now.  They are generally easy plants to look after as they like to be ignored.  Nearly all of them have been living outside now in the Courtyard Garden for a couple of years and until this Winter I would have said they were happily living outside.

I confess to being possibly a little over-smug about how well they enjoyed living outside. The back of the Courtyard Garden is shady and seemed to suit them well.  I was a little worried when it got very frosty this Winter but they seemed to get through it all with no issues.  As Spring arrived I thought I was home and dry, they had got through the Winter unscathed.....

except dry is totally the wrong word as the year started with a lot of rain.

A great deal of rain.

There was rain.

and this amount of rain has consequences.

I realised that my aspidistras were losing their leaves.  Their leaves were just detaching, some looking quite green and others looking very brown.  This was very distressing.  

I gently pulled at a couple of leaves and they came away easily in my hand.  So I stopped doing this. 

I then gently prodded at the compost to see if the root mass underneath felt solid or squidgy.  There was squidge.  I then sighed a lot and turned to the internet to see what the cause and therefore prognosis might be.
I think the issue has been the amount of rain.  The cold didn't seem to upset them but there had been a lot of continuous rain.  So I took action.  Firstly I thought they needed some respite from the wet so I moved them back indoors to dry out a bit.

A couple of weeks later and leaves were no longer detaching but they still looked very poorly.  So I decided to see if there was any hope at all.
I turned the plant pot upside down and there seemed to be good strong roots emerging.  
I have given them some fresh compost over the top, whispered words of love to them and popped them back outside.  We have had no real rain for a couple of weeks and none is due in the near future so they should have some time to recover.  The largest one is looking the best but the rest now look a very motley crew.  I do have one that still lives indoors all year round and I will move them all indoors again when it gets to the Winter, especially the biggest one that is the least impacted.  Aspidistra Asahi, who is my favourite, looks ok but not great and Lennon's Song may well be a gonna.

Time will tell.  

Take care and be kind

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  1. Good luck! It sounds like you've done all the right things. Do keep us posted on their progress.


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