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Rootless Epi. Criniferum

This is a discussion on Rootless Epi. Criniferum within the Orchid Ailments / The Compost Pile forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; I hope that someone has a suggestion for me. I bought this Epi. criniferum a ...

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  1. #1
    Meg25's Avatar
    Meg25 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Rootless Epi. Criniferum

    I hope that someone has a suggestion for me. I bought this Epi. criniferum a month ago- it looked fine and had an early stage spike. At home it had some mealy bugs, but looked healthy and spike kept gradually lengthing.

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    I was suprised last week when it tipped out of the pot when I wattered it! It is in a med. course husk and charcoal mix- and the pot is 3'3 inches. I looked at it out of the pot, it is two plants, and you can see they have no roots.
    It looks healthy though, and each have a new growth. I put it in a mesh with sphag. to keek it moist until I figured out what to do with it.

    I didn't have it long, and I got it from a good vendor- so I know that it hasn't been watered every day the way som big box stores do.
    It seems to be hanging on pretty well with very little root, but obviously it will eventually suffer.

    Have any of you been able to encourage root growth with epi.'s like this? I would think that sphag and bag would be to wet for it for much longer.
    Any advice would be great, I haven't even found much info on growing this perticular species online.


  2. #2
    Diane's Avatar
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    I would try giving it some rooting hormone - I use the powdered type - and potting them up in small bark...

  3. #3
    Phyrex's Avatar
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    It's a bit difficult to see from the pictures but if the roots are rotted don't forget to use some fungicide to try and stop the rot and then do as Diane suggested.
    You could add some sphag to the top part of the bark and then suspend it (tie it to a stake) above it to increase the humidity until it gets some roots going. This also allows you to keep a close eye on it.

  4. #4
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    To help the plant along, I would follow the advice above. When you repot, you can take some stiff wire and create a "root system cross" and attach it to the plant. This will allow you to pot it back up and keep it from falling over and breaking the new roots that it will start growing after the application of the root hormone.


  5. #5
    wetfeet101b's Avatar
    wetfeet101b is offline It's not dead! It's just permanently dormant.
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    Spagh & Bag would be a bad idea (too wet) for reed-stem type orchids. They prefer to be on the dry side when growing roots or in distress.

    I would pot it in a small 2"-3" clay pot with small or medium bark ( semi-terrestrial orchid mix would be ideal).
    Use a plastic or wooden stake stuck in the center of the pot to support the plant while it is trying to establish roots.
    Clay pots provide the heavy base so that they dont topple over as the plant gets taller.

    Again: If there are no roots, do not water.
    Just mist or spray the plant every now and then for some moisture. Once you see roots, you can start watering as normal.

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