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Seek Help - Vanda is languishing.....

This is a discussion on Seek Help - Vanda is languishing..... within the New Growers: Ask the Senior Members forums, part of the New Growers category; I am stumped. I take care of about 400 orchids at our city conservatory. Most ...

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  1. #1
    Germinatorman's Avatar
    Germinatorman is offline Senior Member
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    Default Seek Help - Vanda is languishing.....

    I am stumped. I take care of about 400 orchids at our city conservatory. Most do wonderully but there is one Vanda. It is slowly losing its leaves, from the bottom up. It gets watered twice a week, it has roots but nothing big fat and green. The leaves slightly wrinkle then turn brown and fall off. I have absolutely no experience with Vandas. It is getting warmth and about 50% shade cloth. Soaked once a week. It is in a basket with no medium. It has been green for 4 years and just now acting this way. It was moved from a greenhouse to this one last year. Has been going down hill for several months. Afraid I am going to lose it. Any hints on growing Vandas?

  2. #2
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    jeffrey6115 is offline Senior Member
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    First let's talk water. My vandas get at least heavily misted once if not twice daily. They need water and lots of it. You say it has no medium so therefor no water storage. Next to the 50% shade, way too much. Vandas need as much light as they will tollerate without burning. During the summer mine receive direct sun for many hours. With ecception of the hottest part of the day when they are in dappled shade. You say it was moved from a greenhouse setting. What care was it getting there to keep it thriving?

  3. #3
    Germinatorman's Avatar
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    Same care as before, but it was getting more light in the other house and it was a bit cooler there.

  4. #4
    jeffrey6115's Avatar
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    Especially with more heat you need to water more. What's the humidity like?

  5. #5
    Germinatorman's Avatar
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  6. #6
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    Here in Uk, I have maybe 100-150 Vandas - and currently ( I'm not trying to boast, but put my remarks in perspective) have 9 in flower and about 30 in spike - of these 1 has three spikes, and about 10 are double spiked. They always come bare root , either loose - no "pot" or in those 4 inch plastic baskets. I have grown in them, but reckon they need spraying twice a day in summer, and almost once a day in winter , and even then, go downhill slowly. When I started with this group - about 1990 , they came in wooden baskets, no compost ; same applied, at first they were all new green roots, grew several inches of leaf per month ( best ever grew 15 inches of leaf in a month - this is adding up the growth on several leaves), but after a couple of years slowed down ; after 3 or 4 years, leaves dropped off, etc..
    Now i mostly grow in 6 inch or 8 inch plastic pots , using coarse fir bark or pine bark, but I have a lot in bark + sphagnum moss , and even a couple in coarse Perlite. All hang up as close to the glass as possible . They are dipped in a tank of water/nutrient ( 600 mS, 6,0 pH) once a week in summer, once a fortnight in winter. Those with any external aerial roots get them sprayed every few days too. I repot when they get leggy, and even if n ot , do this every 2 years, more or less , trim off bottom few inches of stem and older or dead roots, get as many back in the pot as possible. I use 2 or even 3 layers of 40% shade cloth to keep temperatures down from late March to late September , and have good air movement from sweep fans. The greenhouse is 35 feet long , 15 feet wide and about 9 ft high in the middle , and jammed full with other orchids ( a few hundred Paphs, ditto cattleyas, ditto oncidiums, and lots of miniatures species, etc) - see pics elsewhere in the greenhouse section - I am just posting a few more today.
    As to specific advice on why your plant is suffering, I am sorry to say that some orchids - in my 50 years of growing them , just get tired of life, and all efforts are to no avail. My worst experience which is still continuing is a multi-floral paph ( Susan Booth) which got frosted in 1993 , and after 18 years of cosseting has 3 or 4 growths none of which are likely to flower any year soon , I may lose patience with this one....

  7. #7
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    I want to thank everyone for their comments. I am going to fill the basket with a coarse bark and instruct the manager to mist daily. I am also going to get it closer to the glass and move it out from under the shade cloth until April or May. We shall see what happens. I will post results. Thanks again.....

  8. #8
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    Don, how's that vanda doing?

  9. #9
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    Hope the vanda is better. Since loosing its lower leaves, it does sound like a humidity issue. Hope it is doing much better, Don.

    Cheers,
    BD

  10. #10
    Germinatorman's Avatar
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    It was the lack of water. I could not believe that filling the basket with bark and watering almost every day or every other day was the right thing to do but it stopped the leaf drop. A lady in our local club waters all her vandas every day and mists them when they are summered outdoors. I consider the greenhouse harsher than outdoors. It has not started growing yet but it has stopped the downhill spiral. Time will tell I guess but it sure looks better. Thanks all.

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