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  #1  
Old 08-29-2019, 12:15 AM
brandih brandih is offline
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my phals blooms are drying and dying Female
Default my phals blooms are drying and dying

Hello everyone i need some help my babies blooms arent blooming!! I have been growing them for 2 years and this year they decided to spike for me. I was so excited to see those spikes i have told everyone i know about them!! I have them in the same matrix i bought them in. When i tried to put other phals i had into newer bigger pots i killed them so i learned my lesson on that. If the roots are all silver looking and dont start dying on me leave them alone!! I have them in east facing windows where they get morning sun and i only water once a week. I did discover today that the planters that are around there plastic casing had water left over in them and the bottom roots were more green than silver. So i took the plastic casing out of the pots to make sure they werent getting to much water. But the buds are drying out they dont look like its to much water doing it. I took pics to show what i mean. I have them in the attachments. Please any help will be amazing. These phals are my green babies!! Some have fur babies i have my green babies!!
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  #2  
Old 08-29-2019, 09:08 AM
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Ray Ray is offline
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Hi, Brandi.

Orchid roots have a layer of dead cells on their surface called "velamen", that act like a sponge to help the plant take up water and nutrients. When dry it can appear silvery, gray, or even brown when it has absorbed tannin from bark. When wet, it becomes clear, exposing the green part of the root below. That is a good thing, not a bad one, as you have interpreted.

That plant appears to be in sphagnum moss, and I can pretty much guarantee that if it's two years old, it needs to be replaced. Since you seem to do well with it, rather than repotting into bark (creating an entirely different root zone environment that your other plants struggled with), why not go with fresh moss?

That out of the way, I doubt either of those things are contributing much, if anything, to your bud blast issue. There are a few, basic things that commonly lead to blasting:
  • insufficient humidity
  • direct sunlight hitting the buds, overheating them
  • a suggen change in temperature or humidty
  • mites (you should see fine webs around the buds, even if you cant see the critters)
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  #3  
Old 08-29-2019, 12:21 PM
aliceinwl aliceinwl is offline
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my phals blooms are drying and dying Female
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If none of Rayís suggestions fit, my guess would be poor root health. I have a Phal I bought with poor roots (3/4ths were dead) that decided to send up a spike after I repotted it and it did this. I have another Phal that had a bad case of stem rot and I know the connection between the plant and root system is compromised, but it decided to spike and is blasting all the buds.

If youíre gentle, Phals tolerate repotting fine even while in bloom. Donít remove any roots that have firm sections: even if they look bad and have mushy spots theyíre still functional. The improved growing conditions may give the plant the boost it needs to mature some of those buds. If watering based on root color, water enough to get the roots to turn green and then wait to water until theyíre back to silver. Donít spray the roots with anything like hydrogen peroxide as a prophylactic treatment: this will damage them.

Last edited by aliceinwl; 08-29-2019 at 12:24 PM..
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  #4  
Old 08-29-2019, 04:47 PM
brandih brandih is offline
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my phals blooms are drying and dying Female
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thank so much for responding so quickly to my pleas for help. I wanted to respond to see if what i am trying to do to help them might really help them.First they are in a bark medium they came in one so i didnt want to mess with that.When i tried to re-pot in the past i changed them from bark to a bark and soil mix and they died so i didnt want to try that again. I think humidity could have been some of there problem. I had them in my room with an airconditioner and I know those suck the humidity out of the air and also could add to temperature changes. So since we are going through a spell with high humidity and nice weather i moved them outside to a spot where they are getting morning sunlight then shade during the rest of the day. I dont see any webbing on them so im thinking no mites. But i did notice there is some yellowing roots on the bottom. I think thats from where they were sitting in water on the bottom, so i am hoping that me removing them from there pots and giving them a chance to breathe will help as well. If there is anything that i should not have done or anything else i should do please let me know. I will do anything to help them out!!
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Old 08-29-2019, 05:59 PM
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Roberta Roberta is offline
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my phals blooms are drying and dying Female
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brandih View Post
First they are in a bark medium they came in one so i didnt want to mess with that.When i tried to re-pot in the past i changed them from bark to a bark and soil mix and they died so i didnt want to try that again.
Soil is a total no-no. These orchids need "humid air" more than "wet" - bark (with or without inorganic material like perlite or pumice) has those air spaces. If they have been in bark, you can safely repot into fresh bark. When you do, you'll need to water more frequently since it will dry out faster. When it dries out, what replaces the water? AIR... exactly what is needed. So that wet-dry cycle is critical.Old broken-down bark is like soil... crowds out the air. So after two years (and if you got them that way, it's been a lot longer) they definitely need repotting. As you learned, bigger is not better in the way of pots - choose one that the roots will just fit into. If there are few good roots, that could even be a pot smaller than the plant. Over-potting also leads to an environment that stays too wet.
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Old 08-30-2019, 02:57 AM
aliceinwl aliceinwl is offline
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My Phals grow and bloom fine in pretty low humidity; itís probably the old media. If you want to baby your plants, rePotme Orchid Supplies has great mixes available for Phalaenopsis. They also have a variety of pots if the plastic pot yours are in now canít be reused (I like their clear slotted pots and have a supply on hand for any impulse orchid buys).

I also noticed that your plants are sitting pretty tightly in their cache pots. Iíve had this lead to root issues. To allow better air circulation, Iíll put a rock or rocks in the bottom of the cache pot so that when I put the plastic pot inside thereís a gap between the walls of the two pots. The rocks also mean that if there is any excess water in the plastic pot when you put it back in, your plant wonít be sitting in it.
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Old 08-30-2019, 08:07 AM
Mountaineer370 Mountaineer370 is offline
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my phals blooms are drying and dying Female
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You mention a "plastic casing" that your plants are in, inside of the cache pot. Would this be the original container that the orchids were in when you bought them? How much ventilation does the plastic casing have? Just one hole at the bottom?

I ask because, if it is the original thin, cheap plastic pot that many commercial growers provide, it probably does not provide for much air circulation. That, coupled with being inside a tight-fitting cache pot, could mean that your orchids are not getting enough air to their roots.

Aliceinwl mentioned the clear, slotted plastic pots from Repotme. I really like those, too. There are multiple drainage holes at the bottom, as well as slots up the sides for even more ventilation. The only downside is that roots will eventually grow out all of those bottom holes and the side slots, and you probably will have to cut the pot off the next time you repot, but to me that is well worth the price of a pot if it means my orchids are growing happy and healthy.

Also, you might want to experiment with using a cache pot that doesn't fit so tightly. I only use cache pots for my largest, heaviest orchids, and I have those in a clay pot that leaves at least a half inch of air space between it and the inner plastic pot. You can even find clay pots or pretty ceramic pots that have holes in the sides especially for orchids.

For my orchids that are just in the plastic pots without a cache pot, I use a matching clear plastic saucer. It has several depressions in it that will catch any excess water running out without allowing the pot to actually sit in water.

Also, I think you've indicated that you've already learned this, but make sure to heed Roberta's advice about the potting material. Soil, even as part of a mix, is a no-no for the vast majority of orchids.
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