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  • 1 Post By espranch
  • 2 Post By gardenguysorchids

What Did I Do Wrong with my orchids?

This is a discussion on What Did I Do Wrong with my orchids? within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; ...

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  1. #1
    DEC's Avatar
    DEC
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    Default What Did I Do Wrong with my orchids?

    I have about 20Phals that appeared to be doing great. I keep them on my patio in subdued light and I can close off the area and heat it when it gets cold. The plants looked very healthy and the leaves have been growing. They spiked and developed buds but more than half of the plants have dropped their buds. I never let the temp get below 50°. I water once a week, a little less often in the cold winter weather, and I feed once a week with a weak solution I live in central Florida and we have had a mild winter. Where did I grow wrong?

  2. #2
    Exo
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    Could be the feeding...once my orchids start forming buds, I stop feeding till they are done, as the extra nitrogen can cause many orchids to drop buds. Could also be the cool temps, but since I grow mine a bit warmer, I can't confirm it and have no experience.

  3. #3
    espranch is offline Senior Member
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    Dave, "what" exactly is going on with your phals, beside bud drop? Generally speaking, phals do not like temperatures below 60 degrees...especially when spiking. They also do not like sudden temperature changes, at any time. This being said, I can only hope that you did not lose all of your buds. I am sad about this for you...Betty :-(

  4. #4
    DEC's Avatar
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    My spikes get 6-8 buds and they get about the size of grapes, show nice color and then they shrivel up and drop. I currently have 3 small plants that have bloomed normaly with three flowers on each. We have a mild winter and I never let it get below 55 degrees. I have a few plants that are spiking now and I hope they do beter. All the other orchids look fine.

  5. #5
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    I am so sorry to hear about the bud loss!! 50-55 sounds a bit cold to me, but I don't know if that would do it...I have always heard that 60-65* was the minimum for them.

  6. #6
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    gardenguysorchids is offline Don't be afraid to color outside the lines
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    They can take 55 degrees in the autumn and that helps to iniate spikes. Once spikes form and start to grow they need warmer temps---no lower than 65 degrees. Temp swings will cause bud drop and shriveling as u describe. Also they should never be fertilized once they are in spike. Sorry you are having this happen to you.

  7. #7
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    [QUOTE Also they should never be fertilized once they are in spike. QUOTE]


    SO when do you start fertilizing again? Once the blooms are all open?

  8. #8
    espranch is offline Senior Member
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    I do my fertilizing BEFORE the orchid blooms. During blooming, I do not fertilize. Just my opinion, but it sure works for me! Betty :-)

  9. #9
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    Wow - I appreciate all the information I have gleaned from this thread. I learned some new things that my orchids should appreciate! Thanks to all you lovely people.

  10. #10
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    There's some good information on this thread already. Bud drop is one of the most difficult problems to diagnose because it can be caused by many things. Just a few things that can cause it are sudden temperature changes, too much or too little water, too much or too little fertilizer, thrips and other pests. Orchids are much more tolerant of those changes in conditions after the flowers are open but they're sensitive while in bud. I've had problems with bud drop on some phals that I have in wooden baskets because they can get too dry before I even notice. I seldom have that problem with the phals I have in plastic pots that dry much slower.

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