Orchids forum: miscellaneous orchid

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Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Jun 27, 2014 3:41 PM CST
I don't have many houseplants, but I did get an orchid as a gift. It's produced 3 blossums after reading online instructions. Every one of them has failed to open. They get about cherry tomato sized, stop growing, and rot till they drop. Anyone know what I'm doing wrong?
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Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
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drdawg
Jun 27, 2014 4:19 PM CST
Do you know what variety of orchid plant it is? When you say "blossums", I assume you mean "buds" or perhaps "sheaths", depending on variety you have.
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Name: Jim Hawk
Odessa, Florida (Zone 9b)
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hawkarica
Jun 27, 2014 4:21 PM CST
Can you find out what kind of orchid it is or perhaps post a picture of it so we can ID it?

Jim
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Jun 27, 2014 5:38 PM CST
It arrived with no info at all. These are the leaves:

Thumb of 2014-06-27/texaskitty111/651d03
This is the stem:



Thumb of 2014-06-27/texaskitty111/dcd844

Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: Jim Hawk
Odessa, Florida (Zone 9b)
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hawkarica
Jun 27, 2014 6:39 PM CST
Looks like you have a Phalaenopsis. The good news is the leaves look fine and the bloom spike is still alive so don't cut it off. The bad news is it is growing in wet moss which will soon give you the deadly black rot. I can't tell if that is an orchid pot or not. Orchid pots have slits up the sides as well as a hole in the bottom. You should go to Home Depot or Lowes and buy some orchid bark. If that pot has the side slits fine, if not, buy one about the same size as that one. While there, buy a small bag of Better-Gro orchid fertilizer. Pull the orchid out of the pot and pick off all of the moss. Wash the roots off and cut off any that are dead. Repot in orchid bark in an orchid pot. Remember ceramic is no good as the pot must breath. The orchid you have is epiphytic meaning it derives its nutrients from the air so it must be able to breath and have good drainage.

Once repotted give it bright light but no direct sun. An east window may work. Orchids like high humidity and most of us mist them every day. Water heavily once a week. It will not like water standing in the crown so planting on a slant is a good idea or perhaps you can tip the pot. The fertilizer is water soluble so you can add a little to your misting bottle once a week or so.

With these tips as a start, Google up Phalaenopsis care and you should be set. Best of luck.

Jim
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Jun 27, 2014 6:57 PM CST
Thanks. I can get an orchid pot, and fertilizer. It is now in an unpainted clay pot, with orchid bark. It came with the moss on top, so I left it when I transplanted it. I will follow your directions, and remove it.
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Jul 5, 2014 12:21 PM CST
Ok, after following above instructions, plant now has fourth pod growing. It is sesame seed size now. Hopefully, it will open. Thank you for help.
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: Jim Hawk
Odessa, Florida (Zone 9b)
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hawkarica
Jul 5, 2014 5:23 PM CST
I tip my hat to you.

Jim
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Oct 1, 2014 9:36 PM CST
So, what is this growing?

Thumb of 2014-10-02/texaskitty111/2f8592

Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: Jim Hawk
Odessa, Florida (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Hibiscus Birds Bromeliad Greenhouse Master Gardener: Florida
Garden Photography Region: United States of America Roses Tropicals Region: Florida Orchids
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hawkarica
Oct 2, 2014 4:36 AM CST
It looks like a new root and that is a good sign. Healthy roots bring about healthy plants and pretty flowers.

Jim
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Oct 2, 2014 5:12 AM CST
Roots start above the soil?
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: Tara
NE, Florida (Zone 9a)
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terrafirma
Oct 2, 2014 5:42 AM CST
They sure can! They are Epiphytes not terrestrials, which would grow in soil. These need the good air circulation, in their native habitat, in/on the crooks and limbs of trees, and therefore enjoy growing in a fairly loose bark medium.
Thumb of 2014-10-02/terrafirma/f5d040 Thumb of 2014-10-02/terrafirma/7138dc

BTW...This one is growing in bark, but I did put a very thin layer of the sphagnum on the top.
[Last edited by terrafirma - Oct 2, 2014 5:46 AM (+)]
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Name: Jim Hawk
Odessa, Florida (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Hibiscus Birds Bromeliad Greenhouse Master Gardener: Florida
Garden Photography Region: United States of America Roses Tropicals Region: Florida Orchids
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hawkarica
Oct 2, 2014 5:42 AM CST
Most orchids, including yours, are epiphytic, meaning they derive their nutrients from the air, not the ground. So yes, they can produce roots from well above the soil line. Actually, there is no soil, just bark or other medium.

Jim
Name: Jim Hawk
Odessa, Florida (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Hibiscus Birds Bromeliad Greenhouse Master Gardener: Florida
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hawkarica
Oct 2, 2014 5:44 AM CST
We cross posted, Tara.

Jim
Name: Tara
NE, Florida (Zone 9a)
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terrafirma
Oct 2, 2014 5:46 AM CST
Thumbs up Morning, Jim! Smiling
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Oct 2, 2014 6:33 AM CST
Well that would be great, as maybe it will help stabilize my wobbly, top heavy plant. Sounds (and looks) like it's not going to root back into the bark, though.
Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: Tara
NE, Florida (Zone 9a)
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terrafirma
Oct 2, 2014 7:06 AM CST
Not sure about that assumption. I believe in time it will indeed send roots down into the bark. All of mine have roots extending down through the bottoms of the pots.
I really like to use the wood baskets for my Phals, and they do send out the roots through the bark.
These are shots of the same basket I posted above...
Thumb of 2014-10-02/terrafirma/b20c3f Thumb of 2014-10-02/terrafirma/cd063d


Name: Tara
NE, Florida (Zone 9a)
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Organic Gardener Garden Sages Birds Frogs and Toads Plant Identifier
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terrafirma
Oct 2, 2014 7:07 AM CST
Forgot to ask...How did the root system look when you repotted?
Name: tk
murchison texas (Zone 8a)

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texaskitty111
Feb 10, 2015 9:19 PM CST
Well, i followed all the above suggestions, and my orchid was doing great! Until it wasnt. NOW, all the leaves are falling off. I thought they were just old leaves, but now the second to the last leaf just dropped for no reason.


Thumb of 2015-02-11/texaskitty111/005b00
both the leaves and roots have stopped growing. Any advice would be appreciated.
Crying

Cauliflower is just a cabbage with a college education (mark twain)
Name: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
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Ursula
Feb 11, 2015 8:10 AM CST

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My advice is to pitch it, go to the store and buy yourself a new one. Phals are available everywhere and they are surely not expensive. Buy one in bud with perhaps a couple of blossoms open so you choose what color you are buying.
Have Fun!!!
Looking at your picture, I would think the pot is perhaps a bit large/ too much bark?
Anyway, I wouldn't beat myself up over this, sometimes you have an Orchid which just doesn't grow for you, no matter how hard you try.

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