I have a Dracaena (marginata I think) which is dying on me. When I originally got it about a year ago I had some trouble with all the leaves falling off a couple of the stalks, which felt soft and waterlogged. After some research on the web and talking to the nursery, I cut back my weekly watering to a monthly watering, but began drenching it thoroughly when I did water it.
After a while I got some new growth at the end of the stalks, but recently that died and one of the stalks became dried out, and fibrous, such that I could break it apart with my hand. The bark looked wrinkled too.
Now, several more stalks have lost the majority of their lower leaves (they're soft, not dried-out, some turning yellowish), and two of those stalks feel soft and waterlogged near the top, with the remaining leaves all dropping over and dying.
The top of the soil is dry a few days after watering, but at the end of the month there is still some moisture 8" or so down. From what I've read, it sounds like my plant
is suffering from root rot, most likely because the pot is too large and not draining well. My questions are:
Do you think this is an accurate assessment of what is happening to my dracaena?
Should I chop off the dead and dying stalks? The main trunk splits into three branches, each of which split into about three more (approximately). I'm considering cutting off the 2 already dead stalks and the two that appear to be dying. Is this the correct thing to do?
Should I repot the plant
into a smaller pot, and if so, what size? The current pot has a 14" diameter interior at the top (tapering down to about 10" at the bottom) and is about 14" deep. The dracaena is about 5 feet tall, with about a 3 1/2" trunk diameter at the bottom. If I repot, should I cut off roots that looked rotted? What sort of soil should I repot it in?
Is monthly a good watering schedule? Should I soak it all the way through when I do water it?
Thanks for any help!