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Can I save this Phal?!?

This is a discussion on Can I save this Phal?!? within the New Growers: Ask the Senior Members forums, part of the New Growers category; Hello everyone, this is my first orchid. well not technically, i never knew how to ...

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  1. #1
    phalorchid78 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Can I save this Phal?!?

    Hello everyone, this is my first orchid. well not technically, i never knew how to take care of an orchid before and i threw one away in the past. (i can't seem to get that off my conscience). My current orchid is over a year old and it came in a box through the mail. It was happy, healthy and what not. The blooms fell off almost immediately and it has not flowered since then. However, I was watering it, misting it and it was growing leaves very quickly so I knew it was happy. I finally cut a stake off at the second to last node to promote some growth since it had been a year. No luck. It still had one spike that i had not cut or touched. so now the move. This Phal has moved from a wide open space with lots of circulation to a very small space with little to no light, little to no circulation, and now i realized... way too much water. needless to say, within a month of moving from missouri to michigan, the plants first stem fell off, then leaf by leaf it became bare. the final two leaves were green and hard, they just fell off in my hands when i touched the plant yesterday. So i did all this research online and I realized that the plant has a fungal infection. This plant has never been repotted. It seemed to be fine and happy in its pot so i didn't worry about repotting. I went to the store today and I bought a new pot, fungicide, orchid mix with charcoal and began my little operation. so now i need help. This is what i discovered when i opened it all up and i don't know what to do... should i repot? or just day good bye and spend the money on a new orchid?

    now the roots that you see seem viable. but, one is almost yellow, one is half black and the greenest green one is hanging by a string. plus, these are the aerial roots, can they be submerged?

    If you guys think its salvageable, please tell me how i can save it.

    anxiously waiting...

    phalorchid78.
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  2. #2
    Kmac's Avatar
    Kmac is offline Senior Member
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    It appears that the crown of the phal rotted...and crown-rot is usually fatal. Is there any plant (not root) that is still solid? It doesn't appear so from the photo.

    I think I would say sayonara to this one, and go pick out a nice new one. Sorry!

  3. #3
    kiwiorchids's Avatar
    kiwiorchids is offline Plant Nut
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    Ok, my advise on this one is-chuck it.

    You must have got water in the crown at some point. Remember water the medium ONLY. dot water the plant lol and dont let it sit in water or get waterlogged-they LOVE air around theyr roots!

  4. #4
    Jose R. Nieves's Avatar
    Jose R. Nieves is offline Senior Member
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    If you manage to save it (???????????) it will take gizillion years to re-bloom. If you want to try....put it in an empty clay pot and forget about it for a couple of days/weeks. Sorry, I know how it feels! But you learned a valuable lesson. Get another one!
    Jose

  5. #5
    Cjcorner's Avatar
    Cjcorner is offline Senior Member
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    Looks like a concensus... Hang in there. I'd suggest you go buy a new plant....maybe you should try an oncidium this time. They have lovely flowers and who knows...maybe you are just better with cattleya or oncidiums...maybe a vanda. You cannot overwater a vanda...that I know of. Hang in there, when you find which ones like your care you will be amazed at how they grow like little weeds!

  6. #6
    kiwiorchids's Avatar
    kiwiorchids is offline Plant Nut
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cjcorner View Post
    Looks like a concensus... Hang in there. I'd suggest you go buy a new plant....maybe you should try an oncidium this time. They have lovely flowers and who knows...maybe you are just better with cattleya or oncidiums...maybe a vanda. You cannot overwater a vanda...that I know of. Hang in there, when you find which ones like your care you will be amazed at how they grow like little weeds!
    Agreed, even though Phals are the most common world wide, they are one of the more difficult orchids for beginners, contrary to what the tag may say. Oncidiums are easy, they like it cool/intermediate, and can handle higher light levels, and flower profusely. Catts like lots of light when new growths are appearing, and dont need watering too much, while Vandas (even though ive had no experience) can handle almost direct light, intermediate/warm temps and as Connie said, lots and lots and lots of water!

  7. #7
    opaline's Avatar
    opaline is offline Senior Member
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    Classic old crown rot are the killer of many orchids not just phals. My phals are potted/ mounted intentionally to point diagonally downwards to reduce risk of any moisture /water collecting in crown and axils. Vandas suffer aswell as many others that have pseudo bulbs and leaf growths from top of bulb. Any orchid with joints/ crowns infact. In future ensure good air moveement and spray/water early to allow evaporation and avoid drop in temp at night encouraging fungal/rot. Crown rot is the primary reason for me not to grow paphs (slipper orchids) and I do love them. Atleast now you know and you can begin to finetune your approach to your new interest. Dont give up just be aware! Our individual grow environments and provision of care often dictate much of what we can grow.

    It is possible that you may ressurect it but not in any time soon.! Discard and value it as a learning curve. Many of my prized orchids with crowns/ pockets/ leaf joints are treated with a pre emptive strike and a twisted tissue is used to wick out any poss water present. Many growers refuse to mist/ spray due to the high risk. I do because mine are all mounted but thats because growing in pots means death by root rot in my care.

    Go mad and treat yourself to a new bargain phal. Let the roots breathe as crown rot comes very close to root rot. Visually assess roots in pot as most phals come in a see thru pot! Green roots mean sufficient water at the time and no more! grey/silver roots means drink please! brown and mushy means rot and requires action.

    Orchids are a wonderful addiction!

  8. #8
    kiwiorchids's Avatar
    kiwiorchids is offline Plant Nut
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    Quote Originally Posted by opaline View Post
    Classic old crown rot are the killer of many orchids not just phals. My phals are potted/ mounted intentionally to point diagonally downwards to reduce risk of any moisture /water collecting in crown and axils. Vandas suffer aswell as many others that have pseudo bulbs and leaf growths from top of bulb. Any orchid with joints/ crowns infact. In future ensure good air moveement and spray/water early to allow evaporation and avoid drop in temp at night encouraging fungal/rot. Crown rot is the primary reason for me not to grow paphs (slipper orchids) and I do love them. Atleast now you know and you can begin to finetune your approach to your new interest. Dont give up just be aware! Our individual grow environments and provision of care often dictate much of what we can grow.

    It is possible that you may ressurect it but not in any time soon.! Discard and value it as a learning curve. Many of my prized orchids with crowns/ pockets/ leaf joints are treated with a pre emptive strike and a twisted tissue is used to wick out any poss water present. Many growers refuse to mist/ spray due to the high risk. I do because mine are all mounted but thats because growing in pots means death by root rot in my care.

    Go mad and treat yourself to a new bargain phal. Let the roots breathe as crown rot comes very close to root rot. Visually assess roots in pot as most phals come in a see thru pot! Green roots mean sufficient water at the time and no more! grey/silver roots means drink please! brown and mushy means rot and requires action.

    Orchids are a wonderful addiction!
    The great thing is, they are growing naturally if you mount them, because they naturally grow downwards for that exact reason in the wild. To keep water out of the crown. Growing in this way means the water just runs off!

  9. #9
    phalorchid78 is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks for the responses!

    I don't recall watering it from the top. I always water it from the bottom. When I took the moss out not only was it wet, there was water coming out of the top most layer of moss, forget the amount that came out from the bottom. When I took it apart, it rot from the bottom up and thats how the fungal infection made it to the top. I'm kind of bummed out about not being able to save it. It was a gift from my husband. The amount of money I spent on the fungicide, the huge bag of repotting medium, the new pot... will easily pay for a new one, but that one was beautiful and I didn't even get to see it flower again.

    Lesson learned.

    I attached a picture of how it looked the day it came.

    phalorchid78.

    thanks so much for the feedback. i left the root in a plate on the kitchen table so it could dry out. i think i will have to throw it out... it was from FTD and cost about $70. what a bummer.

    Opaline, can you show a picture of how you mount your orchids? are they indoors? I am just wondering how someone does that indoors in north america. while searching online I see many many people mounting them upside down outdoors... and they tend to be in tropical climates. you also mentioned not to allow a temperature drop because it can promote rot, however I keep reading online that the orchids need lower evening temperatures in order for a new stem to grow...

    anyhow, i had read that orchids don't like to be moved and this one didn't do well at all!
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  10. #10
    Jef09071984's Avatar
    Jef09071984 is offline Senior Member
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    My piece of suggestion to you is discard it and buy another Phal, as it looks it seems imposible revive it.

    you will just put extra effort on that plants wich is upcertain...

    just charge it up to your expirience. :-)

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