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Phal Leaves Yellowing from Base, Texture Change

This is a discussion on Phal Leaves Yellowing from Base, Texture Change within the Orchid Ailments / The Compost Pile forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; Hello, I have had my plant for about 3.5 years now. It is on my ...

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  1. #1
    BethanyC is offline Junior Member
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    Unhappy Phal Leaves Yellowing from Base, Texture Change

    Hello,

    I have had my plant for about 3.5 years now. It is on my desk at work. Does not get DIRECT sun, the AC does not hit it directly. It has been in the same place and very happy for one year. It has grown 2 full leaves, just started a little leaf bud a few weeks ago and has started 2 new roots in the past couple of months for the first time. I've never given it any food/fertilizer until about a month, month and a half ago, when I found Plant Food Spikes.

    I water it about 2 ice cubes worth of water every Monday. I skipped this Monday as I was out of the office. Today upon my return, I noticed that the 2 biggest leaves on the bottom were yellowing from the base, and that they have a rough, leathery texture that is not normal. I touched the biggest, bottom leaf, and it quite easily came off. I just looked closer and see one little bug. Do Orchids get mites? Can I spray it with an alcohol solution, like a succulent?

    I'm scared to lose this plant.

    Please see photos attached.

    Thank you for your help!!

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  2. #2
    78Terp's Avatar
    78Terp is offline An Avant Gardner
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    Looks normal to me. The Phal decided to shed those leaves. If it continues then there is a problem but they are being shed from the correct location (oldest leaves). Yes to mites and yes to alcohol. What is it potted in? Have you repotted it since you have had it? Seems to be a lot of dead roots. You should reconsider your watering approach. All roots should get wet and have the opportunity to show green. Using ice cubes is not only shocking to a tropical orchid it misses most of the roots. ANd that is why you have all those dead roots above ground.

  3. #3
    ksriramkumar is offline Senior Member
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    Concur with Harvey. Looks like it is potted only in Sphagnum moss. I would suggest you repot it in bark and water them by taking it to a kitchen sink and water till the roots turn green and water next only when the media is dry.

  4. #4
    BethanyC is offline Junior Member
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    Thank you both for taking the time to reply! I have been watering it with what looks like the amount of water that 2 ice cubes would produce, and I only use warm water. I will repot it. It's in bark with a moss layer right now.

    Thank you again for helping to save my plant!!
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  5. #5
    Mohli is offline Junior Member
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    Are the roots okay at the base of plant stem, it looks as though some maybe rotting

    Mo

  6. #6
    BethanyC is offline Junior Member
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    Most roots were rotted. We left it out of the soil fur a weekend to dry out, took off the bottom most leaves that were turning color, cleaned up the roots and planted deeper so that the roots that were above ground are now buried. It's been over a week and so far it looks much better.
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  7. #7
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    So far I think you have done what needed to be done. Never use ice cubes and the temperature of the water should not be hot. Soak the heck out of the plant when you water, it might take several times for the roots to get to the green color they should be when watered properly. From your pictures it looked too dry.

  8. #8
    BethanyC is offline Junior Member
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    Thank you all for your help!!

    Here's an updated photo! It looks MUCH better. I lost one more leaf this morning, but the rest seem to be healthy and the 2 roots on top are GREEEEEEN.

    I've been watering thoroughly, until the water runs through the bottom, with warm water once a week.

    Thanks again!

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  9. #9
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    Well done, it is not until the water drains out of the bottom that is best it is until the roots turn green. Once the root turns green you know it can not absorb much more water at that point, that is when you stop! Let it drain well then put back, you should watch the amount of water in the bottom of that dish you have the pot in, you don't want the plant to sit in any water, it will rot.

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