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White listless roots on orchids

This is a discussion on White listless roots on orchids within the New Growers: Ask the Senior Members forums, part of the New Growers category; I've had my orchid since mid August. It was blooming when I bought it, but ...

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  1. #1
    AllisonMT01 is offline Junior Member
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    Default White listless roots on orchids

    I've had my orchid since mid August. It was blooming when I bought it, but the flowers died out by the end of the month. I cut the blooming step down to about 1 inch above the leaves.

    Since then I've had 1 new leave grow, but no new bloom sprout. I water it once a week in the morning and don't allow the pot to sit in standing water. The roots, however, are not looking good. I will attach a picture and hopefully you will have some advice as to what I'm doing wrong!
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  2. #2
    TirSigel's Avatar
    TirSigel is offline Member
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    I'm not a senior member, however I've been growing for about two years now and have learned a few things. Plus I saw that there were many views, but no help.
    I'll assume the plant was from a big box store, which are often cared for improperly & sometimes doomed from the start. Your's looks like it may make it however. I would first remove all the dead roots and repot in some new Phal mix, in possibly a orchid pot for better ait circulation and draining. I don't have very good luck with the solid plastic pots. It looks like the current bark is very dry so watering frequency and humidity should probably be increased. You can use the skewer method to test the moisture in the potting mix. I never let mine completely dry out, but avoid "wet feet". Give it some light and some time and I think she'll be fine.

    Good Luck,

    Kevin

  3. #3
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    Kevin is right on the money. I also would transplant into a clay pot with new orchid bark. Make sure you remove any broken or dead roots before repotting. Goos luck.

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    AllisonMT01 is offline Junior Member
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    Great, thank you for your response! I plan to stop by the store tomorrow to get a new pot and some phal mix. I have a humidifier in the room now; hopefully it will perk back up.

    Thanks for the advice and I'd welcome any more who may have further insight.

  5. #5
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    Kevin is right on. Also, the leaves should have some body to them. Meaning, the ones in your pics look listless, lift one up and I bet it just flops back down. This indicates lack of water and nutrients. More water but don't drown it. Water it maybe once every 6 days depending on humidity and temperature. I water mine once a week but I have 60% RH and temps about 73 daytime and 64 night.
    Last edited by GenevaDad; February 7th, 2012 at 08:08 PM.

  6. #6
    AllisonMT01 is offline Junior Member
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    Ok. I've repotted the orchid - but I'm a little concerned that the pot is too small. I believe it's a 4 inch pot, which is considerably smaller than the one the orchid was in. I did however, have to cut off a majority of the roots, which made it fit much better. Here are some pictures.Name:  DSCN3176.JPG
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  7. #7
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    What compost have you used?? Doesn't look right, looks a lot like peat. You should use bark and charcoal etc. This medium will retain too much moisture.

  8. #8
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    Is this the specialty bark mix just for phals?? I recognize the darker look. If that contains bark, perlite (tiny white balls), and peat....as long as you don't overwater it should be okay. If that is alot of peat with very little bark, it will need more bark. I'm guessing you just watered as well which also will make it look darker in pictures. You have some very nice green roots, give it a couple weeks before you water again so the roots don't rot at the tips and keep it shaded during that time and it will reduce the shock from repotting. Good luck....

  9. #9
    AllisonMT01 is offline Junior Member
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    The soil is Miracle Gro Orchid potting mix. It's a combination of some small bark chips and tiny white balls, yes. Is this ok? And yes, I had just watered it!

    Thanks for the advice!

  10. #10
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    GenevaDad is offline Senior Member
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    Hi,

    Not to be a jerk, but what piece of furniture is it sitting on? You say, what's it to ya, right? But, that clay saucer will create moisture rings on the furniture if it's wood. How do I know, you may ask? I did the exact same thing and OH, was my wife pissed. Just trying to help!!

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