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  • 1 Post By Halloamey

Cattleya help and questions... Oh, so many questions!

This is a discussion on Cattleya help and questions... Oh, so many questions! within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; I was given this Cattleya orchid by a friend in September last year in pretty ...

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  1. #1
    matheius's Avatar
    matheius is offline Member
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    Default Cattleya help and questions... Oh, so many questions!

    I was given this Cattleya orchid by a friend in September last year in pretty much it's current state. The pseudobulbs were and still are very shrivelled and so are the leaves. It has sat in this miserable state for almost a year without any change until a few weeks ago 2 new growths appeared from the front of the plant and one more this week.
    It grows now on a west facing windowsill indoors (the only position I have) at about 22C Day and 18C night. Im watering when it gets on the dryish side, feeding weakly weekly, seaweed fortnightly and flushing monthly.

    Can anyone tell me how it got like this? and how to rectify the situation?

    The two new growths are growing quicker by the day but I'm concerned that they won't mature before the cooler weather and dull light of the British winter takes over (already the sun is so low it doesn't get any direct sunlight). What will happen if they don't mature in time before the winter rest?

    This is my first Catt so thanks in advance for any info.

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  2. #2
    kiwiorchids's Avatar
    kiwiorchids is offline Plant Nut
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    Ewww, my god....what you need to do there is completely repot the orchid into some Radiata (or Fir) bark. Also give it a good dosing of Sulphur or Potash when you do. That looks sick I personally would pot into Terracotta, as it breathes for the plants roots, as they prefer a lot of air movement around their roots. When you do repot, trim off all of the dead/dying roots, to minimize infection, then treat with sulphur or potash to help control any existing infections. It also looks like you might be watering it too much, try reducing watering, so it has a dry period of about a week. They like to dry nearly completely between watering. I would also reduce feeding, if you are using your fertiliser at full strength, this will be causing a few issues, especially if it is organically based (bacteria love it lol). Reduce feeding to fortnightly, and half the manufacturers directions. Probably doesnt need to be that warm either, but then a little warmth never hurt any cattleyas The warmer temps have most probably influenced the production of two new, healthy growths i see there. This is actually a perfect time to repot when the growths are only little, as the new roots will settle in nicely!

    Infact, just re reading your post, the lack of healthy root mass probably is the cause of your shrivelled pseudobulbs, as there isnt enough water being taken up by the plant at watering times.

    Hope it helps!
    Jordan

  3. #3
    Halloamey's Avatar
    Halloamey is offline Senior Member
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    Yes the media and most of the roots have completely rotted. It needs to be repotted. Also the water you are using could be a major issue, I think it is too hard or is soft but with a lot of sodium and potassium. Wipe the leaves with some diluted orange juice and distilled water. Stop feeding any fertilizer to the plant for the time being. It would be a very good time to switch this plant to semi hydroponics. Here is a link as to how to do it that I posted recently.

    http://www.rv-orchidworks.com/orchid...tml#post329610

  4. #4
    matheius's Avatar
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    Thanks for the input guys,
    I had actually timed taking the photo just after I watered it so the medium didn't come away from the root when I took it out of the pot. I usually let it dry between waterings by feeling the weight of the pot - I've always watered this way.
    I will repot asap into bark and perlite and give the leaves a clean up - I'm think a slatted pot may be better too. I'm feeding 1/4 strength weekly at the moment but I'll reduce this further.
    The water in my area is indeed hard but I water with waste water from my aquarium that is mixed with RO so I know it to be on the soft side.
    Thanks for the link Halloamey - interesting stuff

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