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I feel so frustrated!!! A rotten phal...

This is a discussion on I feel so frustrated!!! A rotten phal... within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; I've posted a thread about this phal earlier. It's the one that (around early May) ...

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  1. #1
    orchidaddict789's Avatar
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    Default I feel so frustrated!!! A rotten phal...

    I've posted a thread about this phal earlier. It's the one that (around early May) I discovered most of its roots are rotten leaving a few aerial ones. It's been well over two months and nothing happened. I mist roots once a day--the aerial roots are just resting on sphag. Now everyday the leaves get a little softer. No new roots, no new leaves. Just sitting there doing nothing. I've been hopeful but now...*sigh*

    Poor phal
    I wonder if it'll ever recover...

    That's why I'm trying other orchids.

  2. #2
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    I don't think it would hurt to stick the aerial roots into sphag, assuming that the roots will go that direction,and that you keep the sphag very very loose. That way at least they can absorb some moisture. As long as the sphag is kept very loose, the roots will not rot (although count on it drying out every few days).

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    Heather is offline Banned
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    Quote Originally Posted by orchidaddict789

    That's why I'm trying other orchids.

    Me too!! LOL!

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    Hi, Lily. I am still a newbie myself but just wanted to share one of my experiences. I have several phals with very limited roots, I overwatered last Winter and when I realized it was too late. Most of these phals were potted in sphag moss which I hate because of my heavy hand. I repotted one into bark, my very first orchid mind you and I wanted to save it. It finally grew a new leaf and improved but ultimately it died.

    I have a few others like this and I put them into s/h with the thinking that the pellets would stay moist but not wet and allow new roots to grow. So far the leaves are not THAT limp. It seems better than the bark for this and not as wet as the moss. Some of the plants are better than others. Just an idea.

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    I,m a newbie as well & i did find the right watering really confusing(especially with Phals).I decided that i would water twice a week , once thouroughly on a Sunday & just a quick splash & dash on a Wednesday.This worked well for my Phals(my mums & aunties were fine as well) but i still didn,t really know if they needed watering.This is the main reason why i changed to s/h with clear pots.
    My Mums & Aunties are still in med bark & are doing fine.They have just followed the regime i started.I don,t know if it,s anything to do with climate in the UK but Phals seem a lot easier to keep here

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    Quote Originally Posted by orchidaddict789
    I've posted a thread about this phal earlier. It's the one that (around early May) I discovered most of its roots are rotten leaving a few aerial ones. It's been well over two months and nothing happened. I mist roots once a day--the aerial roots are just resting on sphag. Now everyday the leaves get a little softer. No new roots, no new leaves. Just sitting there doing nothing. I've been hopeful but now...*sigh*

    Poor phal
    I wonder if it'll ever recover...

    That's why I'm trying other orchids.
    I'm curious as to the size of the pot you have your phal in. I have mine (which is recovering from rotten roots) in a 2 1/2 " pot loosely potted in sphag moss. Of course, I set the pot in a larger one so it isn;t toppled over. The small pot seems to really help make the roots grow.

    I wanted to add that I have ALWAYS had problems growing phals, I've been growing for over a year and have gone through at least 5. To me, they are NOT an easy forst time orchid. Maybe buy an epidendrum or an onchdium. Those seem to be fairly forgiving.

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    I feel for you Orchidaddict, i've also got a phal that i'm trying to save.
    Some days i think it's gonna make it and other days i wonder why i don't just chuck it out and make place for another orchid.

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    Thanks for the help!
    I covered the roots with some sphag so they can retain some moisture. Sounds like s/h is another option but I've never done that before. Is it that phals like s/h more than regular bark/sphag?


    The phal is in a 4 inch plastic pot. Maybe I can put it in a smaller pot (like clay pot to minimize more root rot). Because with not many roots, the most of the sphag in the phal's pot is unused.

    I just don't get it. Phals are said to be the beginner orchids--"the easiest orchid to start with"--which I find is not true! When I first started orchids, I saw phals and they seemed to be the prettiest ever. So I bought a lot of them, and they are nowhere to be "easy".

    Oh well, just hoping that my phal will get better! Its leaves are so limp...

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    Is it that phals like s/h more than regular bark/sphag?
    I doubt there would be much difference between a Phal cultivated in s/h or bark/sphag if they,re watered/cultivated correctly.It,s just that it,s easier to get the watering correct with s/h.
    Never tried to rescue an ailing Phal by using s/h , all the Phals i,ve put in s/h were very healthy before.

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    I too am a confessed phal killer who feels sorry for Martha :-) What I have noticed is that the phals I get from HD or Whole Foods all live for my non-orchid growing friends and die once I get them. The one phal that I got from Al's Orchid Exchange is in bark and is THRIVING, throwing out so many roots it's downright weird.

    So, I'm wondering first where you're getting the phals that die. Second, I finally put my last almost-dead Whole Foods phal in s/h, because others recommended it when I whined about always killing phals, and so far it's been holding it's own, one new leaf already and a second new leaf is just beginning - sure, I've also lost 3 of the old leaves, but hey, the thing would be dead by now I think had I not put it in s/h two months ago.

    For some reason, I just find phals tricky. Other than my one in bark that I'm TERRIFIED to repot next year, lest my curse finally kick in.

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