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Canidate for repotting

This is a discussion on Canidate for repotting within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; Here is a picture of the Den. that I am concerned about. As you can ...

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  1. #1
    DarkRubiTJ is offline Junior Member
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    Default Canidate for repotting

    Here is a picture of the Den. that I am concerned about. As you can see the two tallest canes are begining to yellow and drop their leaves. At the base of the plant you can see new growth that seems to be un affected with the yellowing. Any ideas or suggestions.
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  2. #2
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    LJA
    LJA is offline OrchidTalk Tech Admin
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    The spots on the leaves are definitely fungal. Some folks swear by Neem--it's a natural extract and more environmentally friendly than some other things, but for it be really effective, you have to repeat the treatments pretty often. You might want to check into something like Orthonex or Immunox, both of which are systemic fungicides and insectides in one. They get absorbed into the plant and do their work from the inside. Or, if you don't mind the whitish residue that stays on the leaves, Daconil is a fungicide that works great as well. Just remember to do all of your spraying outside....

    I'd be willing to bet that, when you unpot the plant, the roots coming out of those two yellowing canes will be pretty much dead: the plant is using the energy and nutrients it has stored in the canes to generate that new growth that's coming out, since it can't absorb any nutrients from dead roots. The sphagnum the plant looks like it's potted in is staying too wet down in the middle and it isn't allowing any air to dry the roots out between waterings. This isn't uncommon, but you'd do well to repot the plant as soon as possible in a good quality mix, or just straight bark. Now would be a good time, too, while the new growth is still small, before it starts sending out its own root system.

    At this point, I would leave the old yellowing canes attached instead of cutting them off when you repot. They're not done doing what they need to do to get that new growth "on its feet" and, if you remove them, you might be delaying the new growth's development.

    Otherwise, the plant still looks healthy enough to rebloom for you in the next five or so months....

  3. #3
    DarkRubiTJ is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks, Louis

    I have to agree with you on the moss staying too wet. Almost all the plants we receive at boxstore are planted in moss. I think they do it because shipping is so un-reliable. The shipment we got Wednesday was put on the truck a week ago Monday. One thing I have noticed is that when moss starts to dry it dries out very quick. Damp today dry tomorrow type thing.

    I'll post a series of pictures of the repot, sometime next week.

    If anyone is interested, one of the associates I work with in Garden at my store is a State Licensed Pesticide applicator, in addition to being a state licensed Arborman, and state licensed Nurseyman. I'd be more than happy to relay questions and answers if the forum participants have any. He knows his stuff.

    Thanks again,

    Bruce

  4. #4
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    Brutal_Dreamer is offline Dreaming with my eyes open...
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    Talking Den...

    Okay, here are my two cents worth...

    I would repot and quick! Get the den out of the moss. Use a bark mix that has medium size bark, coconut bark, perlite, and charcoal. The 'dying' canes are sending their nutrients to the new growth. I would just leave them on the plant until they are completely gone. Like Louis said, if you remove them too soon it could slow down the development of the new growth.

    The main thing to do it make sure your den is fungus free and gets lots o' light.

    Happy growing, Bruce!

    Cheers!
    Brutal_Dreamer

  5. #5
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    Bruce,

    The nursery manager at one of the Lowes' stores in NW AR became a member of one of the orchid societies we're part of (the OSO,) and she had some of the same complaints you did about orchid plants coming in to the store. They're all potted in sphagnum, and when an associate goes to water everything else, the orchids get the spray too. They stay too wet; the roots rot, and the plants start going downhill immediately. One of the suggestions we made (granted, it would add to the cost of each orchid....) was to repot the plants immediately in a bark mix so they'd get a chance to dry off a little between the daily waterings. I think the wholesalers you're buying from pot things up in sphagnum because they think the plants won't get any water at all, when the reverse is actually true.

    I don't know how much pull or say you have at the boxstore where you work, but the repotting alone (if they'd go for it) would at least make the orchid plants you get in last a whole lot longer in decent shape. Anyways, just a thought for you guys...

    Thanks, too, for offering to relay questions to your pro....

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    DarkRubiTJ is offline Junior Member
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    In a perfect world, what you suggest would happen. In the world of the "Big Box" retail, there are 3 chances, fat, slim and none. What with 350 palms, delivered last week for Palm Sunday, and 200 Boston Fern hanging baskets, plus over 400 other tropical plants, there is little time to devote to repotting orchids.

    Because I have taken the time and have the passion and love for orchids, in a short 6 weeks I have become "The Orchid Guy". It's been a rapid learning curve, with lots of holes in my knowledge. I've gotten permission to set up a seperate area for the orchids and to try and do them justice. With the volume of total "garden business" my store does, I've decided that education, of associates and customers, is really the best tact to embark on. This time of the year the garden dept of my store is anywhere from 1/4 to 1/3 of the total business of the store on any given day. Needless to say but we are incrediblly busy with little or no time to devote to any tasks other than answering a question or two and loading that lawn mower on your cart. All my education efforts will be visual in nature, with lots of verbage so the customer can understand Orchids and debunk some of the myths of the plants and the culture of them. As the spring season winds down and more time becomes available I plan to start holding 10 to 15 min. learning experiences for the customers and associates.

    Education is the key in my opinion.

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