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Mutant or Mutinous??

This is a discussion on Mutant or Mutinous?? within the Orchid Ailments / The Compost Pile forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; I received at Milt as a thank you gift from a friend. Now I don't ...

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  1. #1
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    Default Mutant or Mutinous??

    I received at Milt as a thank you gift from a friend. Now I don't grow Milts, but this one had 5 spikes in bud so I figure at least I will get some pretty flowers before I kill it.

    Alas, the buds are opening, but the lip stays curled closed. Some of the blossoms have been 'open' for more than a week, yet the lip remains curled.

    There is a lovely fragrance, but because the flowers aren't all the way open I think this guy is headed for the compost pile this weekend. Anyone else experience this with Milts?

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    Yup! There (in my Milt experience) are two types of flowers: ones where the lip unrolls like an ice cream cone as it opens, and ones where the lip and petals open like you're spreading your fingers outward from a fixed point.

    I've had problems with the kind that unrolls. The first few flowers open nicely, and then the others stop, partially unrolled. I asked an AOS judge on another forum about it, and here was his reply:

    "Most of my miltoniopsis have no problem opening up their blooms. However, sometimes they bloom just great and the next year rather mediocre. Most likely it's culture (fertilizer, mix, light) although some plants are genetically weaker. I think that the conditions of the plant while the spike and buds are developing are very important, and they bloom better under cooler conditions.

    Some of the waterfall plants with very intense patterning have problems opening up well, and I know that some breeders will try to lighten up the intensity of the pattern in their hybrids.

    My plants are blooming like crazy right now, and it's the most amazing display. Some of my favorites don't look as well and others are putting on a show. Why?

    As far as watering, I keep them pretty wet and that takes care of any accordion-pleating in the leaves. As long as you repot annually it isn't a problem.Try to keep them evenly most but not soggy or you will have rot problems."

    It would be helpful to know what parentage contributes to the way they open, so that you could avoid those crosses. But I'm not a Milt-head.

    Hope that helps! Sorry yours isn't doing its thing - I understand your frustration!

    Julie

  3. #3
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    Oh nooo not the compost pile ... want my address ? lol I have one that was given to me , The first blooms looked ok , But on the 3rd spike to open the blooms looked ... Well... tired and raggedy the lip did open .
    I think they are picky about humidity and Temp. It might be the adjustment from where it was grown then moved to So. Ca. Just a guess .

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Piper
    Yup! There (in my Milt experience) are two types of flowers: ones where the lip unrolls like an ice cream cone as it opens, and ones where the lip and petals open like you're spreading your fingers outward from a fixed point.

    I've had problems with the kind that unrolls. The first few flowers open nicely, and then the others stop, partially unrolled. I asked an AOS judge on another forum about it, and here was his reply:

    "Most of my miltoniopsis have no problem opening up their blooms. However, sometimes they bloom just great and the next year rather mediocre. Most likely it's culture (fertilizer, mix, light) although some plants are genetically weaker. I think that the conditions of the plant while the spike and buds are developing are very important, and they bloom better under cooler conditions.

    Some of the waterfall plants with very intense patterning have problems opening up well, and I know that some breeders will try to lighten up the intensity of the pattern in their hybrids.

    My plants are blooming like crazy right now, and it's the most amazing display. Some of my favorites don't look as well and others are putting on a show. Why?

    As far as watering, I keep them pretty wet and that takes care of any accordion-pleating in the leaves. As long as you repot annually it isn't a problem.Try to keep them evenly most but not soggy or you will have rot problems."

    It would be helpful to know what parentage contributes to the way they open, so that you could avoid those crosses. But I'm not a Milt-head.

    Hope that helps! Sorry yours isn't doing its thing - I understand your frustration!

    Julie

    Gee - would you like another one for your collection???

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    Thanks, but I'll pass to Gin! I have a wagon-load of new plants coming and I'm desperately trying to make room.

    I know I keep saying that, but then I buy more and the problem just keeps worsening... Luckily most of the last batch were itty bitty guys.

    Julie

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    Default New Milt news!!!

    Diane,

    There may be hope! I was talking with the Canadian grower I just bought from (he's from Vancouver) and we were making Vanda jokes (only because neither of us has the environment to grow them.) I said he must be good at Milt's, and he said he was!

    I asked about the problem where the lip doesn't fully unfurl and he had a ready answer. He said the ambient humidity needs to be fairly high when the flower opens. It will take just so much water from the roots. It needs to supplement that with the water the flower surface absorbs through the air.

    That's why Milt's are higher humidity growers - it's as much about the flower opening properly as it is about the plant growing well. He said many flower forms will improve with higher humidity. Setting a humidifier nearby, or placing the plant in a pebble tray with water underneath, would be an excellent aid for many opening flowers when you want improved form.

    Aha!

    Julie <---pointing her multi-talented finger in the air to emphasize her excitement.

  7. #7
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    That makes a lot of sense to me too. They do need cool temps and lots of moisture. We grow our one milt next to the cool cell. I'm talking almost touching the blasted thing. Enough so that the plant get water spray on it during the day. It is open now, but the water causes the blooms to look so sad. I will go and snap a shot of it in place and post back here in a moment.

    Cheers!
    BD

  8. #8
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    Ok, here are the images. I threw in a bigger shot so folks could see what else we grown next to the cool pads.

    Name:  four.gif
Views: 145
Size:  270.7 KB

    Name:  three.gif
Views: 139
Size:  266.9 KB

    Name:  two.gif
Views: 143
Size:  294.0 KB

    Name:  one.gif
Views: 134
Size:  252.6 KB

    Cheers!
    BD

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    That's a pretty Milt, BD! From that distance the water spotting is hardly noticeable. Nice Paph neighbors - what are they? (Only if it doesn't require you to run back out and check tags!)

    Julie

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Piper
    That's a pretty Milt, BD! From that distance the water spotting is hardly noticeable. Nice Paph neighbors - what are they? (Only if it doesn't require you to run back out and check tags!)

    Julie
    I posted the front one on the forum back in May and you questioned the reflexing of the petals. Can't think of the name, so I am off to the GH again. LOL. I can't remember the second one either, I will just have to go and check.
    I should have thought of that.

    Anyone want to know the name of the milt before I go? LOL

    Cheers!
    BD

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