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  • 1 Post By raybark

Please Help - Orchid plague - 27 dead...

This is a discussion on Please Help - Orchid plague - 27 dead... within the New Growers: Ask the Senior Members forums, part of the New Growers category; Hi everyone....I had 30 orchids of different types, some were over 10 years old. They ...

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  1. #1
    phrags4 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Please Help - Orchid plague - 27 dead...

    Hi everyone....I had 30 orchids of different types, some were over 10 years old. They were so beautiful, and I always had at least 3 or 4 flowering at any point. Over the last year I have lost all but 3, (2 phals and a paph), even my really old dendrobiums died!! For the phals it was extremely traumatic because the plant would look beautiful and fine, and I'd go to water it and ALL the beautiful green leaves would just fall off. Just a tiny part at the very base- the crown, I guess- felt a little soggy and had a few streaks of black just inside. I isolated, I repotted, I cleaned and soaked and even bought African violets because a friend told me they may help and I was willing to do anything at that point. They all died the same. The dendrobiums were the last to go and they went slightly more gracefully-- got soggy at the base and then just died- even the babies. The etiology must be fungal- I'm not sure whether it was crown rot or black something, but I'm a) not sure why I have 3 who seem totally resistant to it, and b) afraid to water the remaining three because watering tends to exacerbate the "black plague", and c) afraid to get anymore orchids- EVER. I slipped up and bought one a few months ago and put it in a completely different room, and sprinkled cinnamon at the crown in a preventative fashion. So I'm guessing the damn thing is airborne, because that one met the same fate as all of the others and I was mortified. I am moving soon, going to get rid of ALL the pots and moss and everything from my former brood. I'm wondering if I should even bother to attempt to rebuild? This seems like a particularly virulent strain of fungus, and if it's on my furniture or clothes or anything, is there any hope??? Any suggestions? Help!!!!

  2. #2
    Chris in Hamilton's Avatar
    Chris in Hamilton is offline Senior Member
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    Would be best if you could post a picture or three but it sounds as if it may be a fungal problem and possibly erwinia. This is an earlier post on this problem.

  3. #3
    PaphMadMan is offline Senior Member
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    The good news - if you do get rid of all plants (not just orchids), pots, media etc., even plant stands, I think there is an excellent chance you'll leave the problem behind when you move. Few plant pathogens will persist for long in a general home environment. You should be able to start over, but start small of course.

    Without pictures it is hard to even suggest a cause, but I would suspect an insect vector spreading the problem.

  4. #4
    raybark's Avatar
    raybark is offline Senior Member
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    Ray Barkalow
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    Oct 2012
    Oak Island NC


    If the rotting areas smell bad, I would agree with the erwinia guess - Erwinia (now classified as a pectobacterium) can make a plant go from asymptomatic to dead in 2-3 days.

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