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Black underleaf spots and tiny white worms...

This is a discussion on Black underleaf spots and tiny white worms... within the Orchid Ailments / The Compost Pile forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; Hi you all! I'm posting a few pictures of my zygopetalum's ailments. There are two, ...

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  1. #1
    liedeldeb is offline Junior Member
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    Default Black underleaf spots and tiny white worms...

    Hi you all!

    I'm posting a few pictures of my zygopetalum's ailments. There are two, and I am unsure if they're related. I recently moved, and when I did I expected the 'shock' that plants sometimes go through when they change locations- on top of that I had just replanted. However it's held up really well except for these tiny black spots that have appeared, first on one leaf and now almost every leaf, for the most part on the underside of the leaves. This has been going on for about two months now, though new roots and shoots continue to appear weekly. I can't get the photo uploader to work but they're small, irregular spots, ranging in size from small pinheads to big ones.

    Then, about two weeks ago, I noticed in the humidity tray my orchid sits in that there are small white worms living at the surface of the water among the rocks in the tray- tiny worms, less than a mm long apiece. I dumped out the water, boiled the rocks, scrubbed the tray, and refilled it with water and rocks- the worms came back the next day, leading me to think they are coming from the base of my orchid. Does anyone know what these are, and if they could be causing the black spots? And how can I treat these problems? Thank you so very much for your suggestions.

  2. #2
    kiwiorchids's Avatar
    kiwiorchids is offline Plant Nut
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    those worms may be nematodes, and they may be herbivorous nematodes as well, causing the damage on the leaves. If it is Nematodes, then you can buy special things (idk what they are called) of carnivorous nematodes, that eventually may die from lack of food anyway......just a thought!

  3. #3
    Daethen is offline Senior Member
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    Have you tried taking the plant out of the pot to see if there are worms in the medium?

  4. #4
    liedeldeb is offline Junior Member
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    I haven't tried that yet- I didn't want to startle it. I just repotted it around Christmas and moved into a new apartment (with new temperature and lighting) about two months ago! Do you think that's alright? If so, what should I do? I suspect the worms are coming from the base of the pot but am not sure whether it's troubling enough to repot the plant.

    ---------- Auto-Merged DoublePost - Post added at 07:44 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:43 PM ----------

    Thanks for the suggestion! I will look into that.

  5. #5
    liedeldeb is offline Junior Member
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    Default photos

    Please see the attached photos. I had a beautiful orchid only a few months ago and I'm desperate to figure out what's going on here, and how to treat it without harming the orchid! These white worms are only in the water, and there is no insect investation in the leaves (that I can see). So I'm not positive the leaf spots and the worms are related, but both are problems! Please, any advice is helpful.
    Attached Images Attached Images     

  6. #6
    Brutal_Dreamer's Avatar
    Brutal_Dreamer is online now Dreaming with my eyes open...
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    The spots are most likely not a problem at all, but rather the sign that your orchid is getting enough light to bloom. Many oncidium orchids have these spots. Some will argue that they can grow oncidiums without getting these tiny spots and bloom their plants, but I haven't personally seen an oncidium in bloom without them in person. The worm things are a different issue all together. you can flush the medium with a bleach/water mixture and kill them. TINY amount of bleach - or use rubbing alcohol instead.

    Cheers,
    BD

  7. #7
    Cjcorner's Avatar
    Cjcorner is offline Senior Member
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    I agree...the freckles are normal on oncidiums. It's the worms that I would be looking to fix. If I flush my roots I also add a few drops of dishsoap with my three in one bug killer stuff.

  8. #8
    Suncoast is offline Junior Member
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    Looks like termites to me....

  9. #9
    kiwiorchids's Avatar
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    Oh right, ive seen these before. It is an indication you need a REPOT! These little cuties do no harm to your plant, they just want to convert that old medium into compost.

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