Shop Orchid Care OrchidTalk Orchid Forum Weather Station Links Nursery

Welcome to OrchidTalk Orchid Forums


The Friendliest Orchid Community on the Internet!


  •  » Learn to Repot your Orchids
  •  » Learn Orchid Care Tips and Secrets
  •  » Find the perfect Orchid for your Growing Environment
  •  » Chat with Orchid Growing Professionals

OrchidTalk - "Bringing People Together to Grow Orchids Better!"


Let us help you grow your Orchids better; Join our community today.


YES! I want to register an account for free right now!


Register or Login now to remove this advertisement.

Results 1 to 10 of 10
Like Tree1Likes
  • 1 Post By SeanHoutman

Roots turning brown

This is a discussion on Roots turning brown within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; Hi orchid lovers, can anyone please tell me why my orchid roots are turning brown? ...

Click here to increase the font size Click here to reduce the font size
  1. #1
    Real Name
    Andrew
    My Grow Area
    Windowsill
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Gender
    Male
    Location
    Auckland
    Posts
    38
    Member's Country Flag

    Default Roots turning brown

    Hi orchid lovers, can anyone please tell me why my orchid roots are turning brown? The ones changing their colour are all exposed in the air by the way.

    The same orchid in the pic below has lost two leaves since I have acquired a month ago but otherwise it has sent up two spikes and putting out a leave. It is potted in bark and I have been watering it every week. It's day six since the last time I watered. And by looking at the second photo, do you think I have to hold off the watering until the roots turns grey ?

    Name:  image.jpg
Views: 1334
Size:  95.2 KB

    Name:  image.jpg
Views: 1167
Size:  91.6 KB

    Name:  image.jpg
Views: 1190
Size:  86.8 KB

  2. #2
    ksriramkumar is offline Senior Member
    My Grow Area
    Outside 24/7
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    Vanda, Phals & Dendrobium
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Gender
    Male
    Location
    Bangalore,India
    Posts
    6,790
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    Hi andrew, how does it feel to touch the roots?. the roots inside the container look ok to me.

  3. #3
    Real Name
    Andrew
    My Grow Area
    Windowsill
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Gender
    Male
    Location
    Auckland
    Posts
    38
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    Hi Ksriramkumar, the roots are generally firm but I did chop a few roots on the surface that became mushy.

    A pic below shows aerial roots this phal had when it first came to me in December. These roots are now gone. What I find interesting is that those aerial roots have first turned grey and later became soft whereas the roots exposed on top of the pot have become brown. I noticed a few of them exposed in the air have gone mushy and brown so I chopped them off. The ones remaining on the surface are still firm and the roots sitting inside the pot looked pretty healthy as they look green. So I am wondering what's actually causing the top roots going brown?

  4. #4
    catttan's Avatar
    catttan is offline Senior Member
    Real Name
    Yew-Sung
    My Grow Area
    Outside 24/7
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    cattleyas, vandaceous,paphios
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Gender
    Male
    Location
    Kedah, Peninsular Malaysia
    Posts
    15,877
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    They look OK to me too.

  5. #5
    kspalding's Avatar
    kspalding is offline Senior Member
    Real Name
    Kim
    My Grow Area
    Windowsill
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    Cattaleya and Intergeneric
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Gender
    Female
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    982
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    What color phase did they go through before? Green to white to yellow to brown to black? May just be over exposed. Could be over or under fed. Could be location..... Lots of things can cause this.

    ---------- Post Merged at 02:11 PM ----------

    Whatever u do stop chopping!!!!!!!!! You could cause more harm than needed if u don't know why!!!!!!

  6. #6
    Real Name
    Andrew
    My Grow Area
    Windowsill
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Gender
    Male
    Location
    Auckland
    Posts
    38
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    Not sure about the colour phase it went through. The only thing I remember is that the roots in the air were green when the plant came to me.

  7. #7
    SeanHoutman's Avatar
    SeanHoutman is offline Senior Member
    Real Name
    Sean Houtman
    My Grow Area
    Windowsill
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Gender
    Male
    Location
    Albuquerque, NM
    Posts
    107
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    Surface roots turning brown like that could be either salt buildup or light damage. Most likely salt build up, if you have been fertilizing, cut back. I see lots of new root growth, and those new roots will be acclimated for your current conditions. You also have 9 leaves on a Phalaenopsis, which is phenomenal.

  8. #8
    Real Name
    Andrew
    My Grow Area
    Windowsill
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Gender
    Male
    Location
    Auckland
    Posts
    38
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    Thanks. I will be feeding less from now.

    When would be the right time to water your orchids? When the top of its media becomes dry or are you going by your normal watering schedule?

  9. #9
    78Terp's Avatar
    78Terp is offline An Avant Gardner
    Real Name
    Harvey
    My Grow Area
    Under Lights
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    1-Neo falcata,2-Phal,3-Paph
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Gender
    Male
    Location
    Littleton, Colorado
    Posts
    6,036
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    I guess that depends on the potting media.

    Planted in:
    Spag moss- No. I'd pull the plant out of the pot and feel to see if it is damp or not.

    Bark- I try to judge the weight of the orchid dry and wet and try to go by that. In my dry environment, I water my bark media orchids every 2-3 days(only one left to repot out of moss. That is my zygo and I am looking for new growth on it before I repot). Paphs generally daily if they are light weight enough.

  10. #10
    OrchisAmor's Avatar
    OrchisAmor is offline Senior Member
    Real Name
    Annette
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    Slippers, Moth, Psycopsis, etc
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Gender
    Female
    Location
    Salt Lake City, Utah
    Posts
    256
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    Another option on water is to stick your finger down in the media about an inch or so to see if it's still wet. Those that like to be more moist - I water at ~1" dry media whereas those that like to be more dry - I water a day after around 1-1.5" dry media. I have my orchids in bark mix, and this works very well for me.

Similar Threads

  1. Cause for new growths turning brown?
    By nicki in forum Orchid Ailments / The Compost Pile
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: March 7th, 2013, 02:00 AM
  2. Catt. Sheath Turning Brown ?
    By rich63 in forum Orchid Ailments / The Compost Pile
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: May 29th, 2010, 01:09 PM
  3. Dendro 'Elma Lai', why are the flower buds turning brown
    By zero in forum General Orchid Culture
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: February 8th, 2010, 07:28 AM
  4. Brown roots? Strange...
    By orchidaddict789 in forum General Orchid Culture
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: August 29th, 2005, 07:14 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
OrchidTalk --An Orchid Growers Discussion Forum brought to you by River Valley Orchidworks. A World Community where orchid beginners and experts talk about orchids and share tips on their care, cultivation, and propagation.