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Can flowering inhibit new growth?

This is a discussion on Can flowering inhibit new growth? within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; I have one question, but I'm using two different orchids as examples. Orchid #1 My ...

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  1. #1
    TundraKev's Avatar
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    Default Can flowering inhibit new growth?

    I have one question, but I'm using two different orchids as examples.

    Orchid #1
    My Colmanara Wildcat (yep, the same one I referred to in another post)
    I've had this one for a very long time and in the past it always bloomed around December and started new growth around February. This year, it bloomed in December but started to produce a 2nd spike from the same PB a month or so ago (I cut it off). No new growth has started yet, although it's starting to produce new roots.

    Orchid #2
    NoID Dend Phal
    I abused this one for years, so it never bloomed, but again always seemed to start new growth late January - early February. This past year, I guess I gave it what it wanted, so it finally bloomed in February and still is - 2 spikes (I really kind of like it now ). No new growth has started though.

    So, my question is this: Could the fact that no new growth has started yet somehow be related to the blooming or attempt at reblooming of these two plants? Do these two plants usually do both at once or could the blooming delay the start of vegetative growth? Would chopping off the flowers on the Dend. possibly help get this puppy moving? As I stated, I did chop off the new spike on the Wildcat. Do you think that will help the situation any?

    Me

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    LJA
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    Blooming can definitely inhibit the start or resumption of new growth. Mature plants or plants at the peak of health can sometimes do both, but if they're not in the best of shape, they'll still put their energy toward spikes if it's their season and you allow it, at the expense of vegetative growth.

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    Thank you.

    (chop, chop)

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    Kev,

    I bought a Dtps. in Jan. that was in spike with flowers just opening. The leaves seemed healthy. As a rule, I repotted it upon arriving home, despite the flowering spike. There were rotting roots, which I trimmed, and all seemed well. The dual spikes had many branches and as the final flowers opened (30+), the leaves began to shrivel.

    The poor plant no longer had the root structure to take in all the water needed to support such a massive floral infrastructure (think hydraulics). It was suiciding to keep the flowers looking good.

    ...snip, snip.

    The flowers looked good in a vase for a week. No regrets saving the plant, which is now doing fine. Leaves are recovered.

    Julie

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    Julie,

    I know what you mean. A small 2 PB division of an Oncidium Aloha Iwanaga decided to bloom. While it was blooming, the 2 PB's would not plump-up. They just always looked kind of tired. Within a couple of days of chopping off the flowers, the PB's sucked up water and now look nice and fat the way they are supposed to. I'm glad I cut the spike.

    Kevin

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    Hi Kev,


    I think the answer is a definite yes, at least for the orchids I'm most familiar with--Phals. Whenever my Phals spike, the roots cease growing. Leaves, likewise, never seem to get initiated until after the flowers fade.

    I guess I need to stress, though, my plants are all still rather young. Perhaps a really huge plant will grow during flowering. Most of the experienced growers in my club, however, have commented on the cessation of all other growth during blooming of Phals.

    Cheers,

    Rob

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    Yep, I agree. I had this little den that did nothing but bloom from December to February. It had no new growths, which was really getting me worried (no growths=no future spikes ). Finally the spikes finished and just a few days ago I noticed two tiny growths popping out. Then again my Sharry Baby bloomed for quite a while, and the little growths seemed to be in a stand-still. Now, with blooms gone for a while, the growths are growing again.

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    Well, I cut the flowers on the Den today. I'm sure they will last a few weeks in water. Thanks for your responses.

    K

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    Personaly I think it is the age, and health of the plant that is the judge of this question. I have a wildcat also that normaly has bloomed by now, but for some reason hasn't yet, and I noticed a new growth coming on the plant. Well, this plant is hung up high in the GH, and I pulled it down today to look at it and low and behold there is a nice FAT spike coming up from the newest matured SB. There is also a new growth starting as well. Now I don't know if this growth will stall once the spike gets bigger. That has yet to be seen, but the new growth is growing on the oposite side as it normaly grows on. for the past two years this plant has been growing new growths on the same side every year. So in esance growing in a circle, but this year it decided to change. I will post pics of it once it flowers. This is just my 2 cents by no means the gosple. Heavens knows I'm still learning!!:lemmetell

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