HELP! Vanda leaves yellowing and dropping
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HELP! Vanda leaves yellowing and dropping
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Old 10-05-2019, 08:05 AM
Jens_orchids Jens_orchids is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2019
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HELP! Vanda leaves yellowing and dropping Female
Exclamation HELP! Vanda leaves yellowing and dropping

Hi all, I'm new here

I bought my first vanda a couple of weeks ago from a local florist. It had beautiful orangey red spotted flowers and was hanging in the window for a few weeks until I finally caved a purchased it.

As I am new to vandas, I don't know everything I should be looking for in a healthy plant to purchase but it looked okay, just a bit dehydrated in the roots.

This was it when I got it home:

I had it hanging up on a curtain rail for a few days and watered it every day by soaking it then rehanging. I noticed that a few leaves were turning yellow and falling but assumed that they might have been a bit damaged when I brought it home or it was adjusting to more watering.

I built a basket for it to sit in and removed what appeared as the most mushy brown roots and left the rest. I have a layer of sisal fibre on the bottom of the basket and then chunky bark with a bit of sphagnum mixed into it (as it looked a bit dehydrated). Also, I wanted it to be a bit adjusted as I am going away for a few days soon so can't have it hanging free.

Now I am checking it every day and watering when the media is dry. Most of the roots have a layer of algae on them so don't look silver but the ones that are silver, green up when watered. It also has green roots branching out of the older more shrivelled roots.

Leaves are still turning yellow and dropping. They go brittle at the stem join and snap off. I have pulled away the remains of a couple of leaves to check the stem for rot but it seems green.

I am really worried and stressing out because it is such a beautiful plant and is starting to look more like a palm tree. I've looked at so many websites and threads to try to find help but I am not experience enough to know what to do next. I refuse to accept the youtube videos of fusarium at this stage as it could just be adapting still.

Can anyone with vanda experience give me some advice?

Thanks and pleased you meet you all!
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Old 10-05-2019, 08:55 AM
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Bulbopedilum Bulbopedilum is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Sleman, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Posts: 561

Not a Vanda expert, but from your pics it seems like the plant is doing well and only the old leaves are dropping, which is normal. Orchid leaves don't last forever, as with any other plant.

New roots or maybe even an offshoot should grow from where there was once leaves.
- Saka
(Yes that's my name)

Ok I don't know what to put here...
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Old 10-05-2019, 10:20 AM
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WaterWitchin WaterWitchin is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2011
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I'm also far from being a Vanda expert. Having said that, losing that many leaves, plus the blooms, in two weeks time isn't normal old leaf loss. Here's hoping someone with Vanda expertise will come along soon! Welcome to OrchidBoard!
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Old 10-05-2019, 03:27 PM
jcec1 jcec1 is offline
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Posts: 891
HELP! Vanda leaves yellowing and dropping

I reckon you may have rot in the stem. This could have been caused by water getting in between the leaves at some stage.

I grow vandas in glass vases - there is a thread dedicated to it. I would put it in a vase, and then soak it a couple of times a week avoiding water on the stem as much as possible - you can also spritz the roots as well when they look dry.

Growing a Vanda bareroot indoors is a complete faff and central heating doesn't really suit it either.
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Old 10-05-2019, 06:14 PM
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SouthPark SouthPark is offline
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HELP! Vanda leaves yellowing and dropping Male

I agree with jcec1 ----- rot in the stem is likely.

What I would do - just in case - is spray the plant (stem and leaves) with fungicide/bactericide (orchid-safe ones, with correct dosage) -- and when watering, I only water the media and the roots growing in the media.
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Old 10-06-2019, 01:28 AM
aliceinwl aliceinwl is offline
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HELP! Vanda leaves yellowing and dropping Female

Iím not a Vanda expert either, but mine are doing great bare root. I soak the roots overnight then re-hang in the morning. When I have to go out of town for a week or two I just move them to a location with less sun exposure and theyíre fine when I get back. Iíll probably have to transition to the glass vase method at some point as they get larger.

Iíve also noticed a dramatic response in these to kelp based rooting stimulants. All three of mine had non-growing roots at the time of purchase. When I did a KelpMax soak, I want to say I had growing root tips within 48 hours. Every subsequent soak has produced new branches on the roots. I feel like this really jump started my plants.

Yours is probably five times as large as mine but with fewer roots. If the stem is okay, it may just not have the root mass to take up enough water to support the leaves and is dropping some leaves as a result.

The one Vanda I have in substrate is in a very small pot with just medium grade stone. I think if you want to go the substrate route you may need something that will dry within 24 hours. Mine rapidly developed black spotting on the roots when I let them stay continually moist for over a day.

Last edited by aliceinwl; 10-06-2019 at 01:35 AM..
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