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Cattleya Root Question

This is a discussion on Cattleya Root Question within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; So, my first every orchid, an Iwanagara Haelia (I know that's not sp. right. Need ...

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  1. #1
    Heather is offline Banned
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    Default Cattleya Root Question

    So, my first every orchid, an Iwanagara Haelia (I know that's not sp. right. Need to work on that one!) is growing roots like mad. I repotted it in January in one of these clay orchid pots w/ all the holes. So, the roots are all growing out the holes. I know I won't need to repot for ages but by that time I imagine the pot will be swarming on the outside. How exactly does one get a plant out of a pot like this? Breaking it comes to mind, but thought I'd ask, maybe there is a more humane to pots kind of way?

  2. #2
    MonkeyThrowPoop's Avatar
    MonkeyThrowPoop is offline Junior Member
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    yep, alot of breaking and cutting.

    i let it sit in water for a while to loosen everything up, then grab the hammer

  3. #3
    Heather is offline Banned
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    Alright, well, I honestly didn't like that pot much anyway....

  4. #4
    LJA's Avatar
    LJA
    LJA is offline OrchidTalk Tech Admin
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    Heather, Monkey's right; if it really is that rootbound, breaking the pot may be your only option. Catt roots will practically etch themselves onto clay, making it virtually impossible to remove the plant. Some people take a long, sterilized knife and run it around the inside perimeter of the pot; that sometimes works if you wanted to try before smashing.

  5. #5
    Gilda is offline "Master of the Moth and Phrags "
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    That problem is why I prefer plastic....then you still have the problem of getting roots out of the drain holes.

    I just tackled(literally), a phal in a 8 " clay pot. It had been in that pot for 2 years ,so like lja said"It was etched into the clay".

    I soaked and soaked and finally pried it loose with a thin blade knife...I did loose a few roots but kept the pot! The phal has a new home in a plastic pot! It's a shame too, because they really LOVE clay!

  6. #6
    Heather is offline Banned
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    Well, when I repotted in Jan. It was pretty attached to the plastic pot it was in, so, I know what to expect next year I guess. Glad its such a prolific root grower though.

  7. #7
    Jmoney's Avatar
    Jmoney is offline Senior Member
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    I use only clay pots for catts because, 1. I grow big catts that like to topple over otherwise, 2. I like to be able to water heavily while they're growing and have them dry out very quickly when they're not growing, and 3. aesthetics, I just like clay.

    That said, repotting is a real pain. Half the time I end up breaking the pot, and 100% of the time there is a great deal of root damage (they stick to clay and don't come off). Of course, if you repot at the correct time, i.e. when the plant is just about to send out a flush of new roots, it won't hurt the plant much, but it is traumatic the first time you witness such carnage.

  8. #8
    Heather is offline Banned
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    Thanks Jason! That is when I repotted in Jan - it was just getting ready to go KABOOM!! So, I lucked out. Now I have a good idea when to make a go of it next year. I'll be gentle, at least on the plant. As I said, wasn't too picky about pot, since it was a spur of the moment re-potting and I just ran out and bought the first "orchid pot" I could find. Know a lot more now....mostly thanks to all of you lovely folks here!

  9. #9
    Gilda is offline "Master of the Moth and Phrags "
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    Heather,
    If you wet your orchid in plastic really good,and squeeze the sides as you turn the pot, the roots will let go of the plastic. Have fun!

  10. #10
    Invinciblegirl is offline Junior Member
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    Man, I'm anticipating quite the struggle with my only catt. in a clay pot - my Pot. Burana Beauty was repotted last year and now it's doing some sort of De Soto crazy expedition with its roots, winding out of the pot, traveling down, crawling back in through one of the holes. It's chaos.

    Since I don't really care about my dumb 75 cent terracotta pots, I'm wondering if there's a way to score it and break it in a controlled way and just throw those shards in a bigger pot when he needs to be repotted.

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