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This is a discussion on Repotting phal from sphag to bark... within the Orchid Ailments / The Compost Pile forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; well, i LOVE phals. they are so pretty. ive been in love with them for ...
well, i LOVE phals. they are so pretty. ive been in love with them for about 5 years...i had 2 while i lived in california but they didnt make the trip. they died. too much climate change from cali...to 3 wk visit with family in AZ (hot and dry), then all the way to MS (hot and humid). =*(
then last july i got a blue orchid. i never seen a blue one before and it was quite lovely. its been growing well until recently. it has two spikes and one is in bloom and the other is shorter with about 6 small buds forming...and SURPRISE...the flowers were white. hehehe...i guess they just dyed them blue. hehehe....it was full of good roots...
anywho, last month my family and i got sick, so we ran the humidifier 24/7 for about 2 weeks. (btw, i usually water my phal every 7-10 days, it is in a shaded south facing window...in 4 inch plastic pot. its inside larger decorative pot)...and during that time my a/c unit decided to go on strike...so the humidity in our home was even higher. well i suspected something was not right...so i unpotted it, some roots were rotted. so i cut off the bad roots, (everything was cleaned/disinfected) put in fresh bark media (miracle grow), which was the same as what it was growing in...a couple days later i saw more roots on the edge of the pots were rotting again. i was upset... =o( ...half the phal roots are gone.
at this time, i also got a few more orchid that were on a discount rack...most of them had good root systems but were in sphag. i dont know how to water to care for an orchid in sphag so i repotted them in bark with packing peanuts in the middle of the roots and bark surrounding it...hoping this would help save the nice roots. well, they didnt seem to like the miracle grow bark mix...then i thought maybe the bark mix was too small (remembering that the phals in cali had large bark). so i looked at other orchid mixes and found better-gro to have larger mix. (and the a/c was fixed!)
i was in conflict, but i decided to repot again with this larger mix...(didnt presoak the bark...oops)...the orchid were still damp/wet after a week even with packing peanuts...so i decided to drill holes on the side of the plastic pots to get better air circulation with the large bark...pot sizes are 3 and 4 in. hopefully my orchids will be ok and can breath better. i didnt water after i repotted since the roots were since damp. im just going to leave them alone and see what happens now.
question: i know orchids get stressed from being repotted...but will the drastic changed from sphag to bark further stress it out?
it went from long term damp (sphag) to dry in a few days(bark)...how can i make sure i dont mess up these roots since i changed their enviroment?
how often should i water after repotting?
and how much water (light or drenched?)
basically...help me on how i can not kill my orchids?
any suggestions from you experts is well appreciated...and yes you can yell at me for repotting twice. =P ...but just be sure to answer my questions in the process. =D