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  #1  
Old 05-08-2011, 09:50 PM
jrodpad jrodpad is offline
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Default Kinky Spike

Miltonias hate me. They do. Bought one once in bloom because it had the most spectacular waterfall. It's never bloomed for me. Not even a single spike. I stopped looking for spikes long ago.

Today, while watering, I saw the craziest, kinked up flower spike stuck in one of the leafs. I gently freed the spike and it seems to be okay. I don't know if I will ever get it to support the weight of a flower, but I'm so happy that it's well enough to bloom.

Have you guys ever seen anything so bent up?

I love these guys. Maybe someday I'll crack the code and figure out how to grow these for real.

-J

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  #2  
Old 05-08-2011, 10:46 PM
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silken silken is offline
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Congrats on the bloom spike! I have run into this a couple times with milts and I think it is not enough humidity. Did you check the other side too as they bloom from both sides sometimes. Last summer I found a spike stuck between the leaf and pseudobulb and the stem was trying to grow longer but the buds were stuck and mine were like yours or worse. I tried to help it free, but I must have damaged it and never did get to see the bloom. This spring another one did the same, but I caught it sooner and and although it wasn't quite as bent as yours, it was bent a lot, but it has straightened out completely and will bloom soon. There may be a small mark on the top bloom from me using a toothpick to help it out. It really pays to start peeking in the leaves early if you think it will bloom. The one I lost last summer now has a new growth that isn't even fully mature but has two spikes on it, and I keep prying the leaf wider (gently) to give it space to come out. I will breath easier when it makes it which will be soon I think.

Yours must be getting good watering as I don't see much for crinkled leaves. But they need high humidity, moving air and fairly cool temps. I bet it will straighten out somewhat if you keep it oriented in the same direction now. Be sure to post pics when it blooms as I love them too
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  #3  
Old 05-09-2011, 03:30 PM
jrodpad jrodpad is offline
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Thanks for all the great info silken.

I use a smaller grade of bark-mix for this milt. on the theory that it will stay wetter longer. My hope was to only have to water once a week, like my phals. But I noticed that the new leaves started getting the old accordion effect, so I was forced to up the watering to twice a week like my paphs. I caught it pretty early, so I think the accordioning (definitely not a real word) was kept to a minimum. Humidity is likely the culprit. It's parked in front of a fan, gets good light, but has crummy humidity, even sitting on top of a humidity tray I can only get low fifties at best. I will keep it pointed in the same direction and I'll let you know if it straitens out at all. I gave it a pretty good once over today and only saw this one spike. Don't get me wrong, I'm thrilled to just have one. It is a funny looking beat up kind of spike though, isn't it.

I'll follow up with pics if it gets to blooming. I give it less than 50/50 at this point.

-J
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  #4  
Old 05-09-2011, 05:34 PM
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silken silken is offline
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Fingers crossed for that determined little spike. If it progresses at all in the next few days then I would think it will bloom as it can obviously get nutrients thru the bend! Mine was bent at a right angle and is just a graceful arch now so not to give you false hopes but... I potted mine in sphagnum with just a bit of bark and perlite and they seem to like it. I am still watering at least twice a week now it seems. I moved mine into a little cheap plastic greenhouse with a bottom and top shelf. On the bottom shelf I keep a large kitty litter pan full of water and then the plants are on the upper shelf. I close it at night and humidity gets to 70 and 80%. It was closed all winter too during the days, but now with higher temps I open it in the day. I have a fan blowing in through the door 24/7.
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  #5  
Old 05-10-2011, 07:14 AM
jrodpad jrodpad is offline
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You were so right! I examined the milt. today and found a second kinked up spike coming out of a different pbulb. I checked it over closely a few days ago and there wasn't even a hint of a second spike. I've just doubled my chances of getting this little guy to flower. Woohoo! The second spike also resembles a bendy straw, but I caught it sooner so it's not quite as bendy. Thanks for telling me about the tendency to spike in pairs, otherwise I probably wouldn't have even looked.

Keep your fingers crossed.

-J
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  #6  
Old 05-10-2011, 10:33 AM
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That is so great! I have two that have 2 spikes on the same pseudobulb, and they are fairly young plants so I am pleased! The one is still what I would call an immature PB and the leaves so tightly clustered, but I looked anyways and there they were. I have been very gently pulling open the leave that surrounds it every day and it has not emerged fully yet, but looks like it might come out straight this time. It's the plant I lost the spike on last year, so I'm being very diligent this year! Of course you will post pictures when it blooms right?
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  #7  
Old 05-10-2011, 12:50 PM
jrodpad jrodpad is offline
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I will post pictures if it blooms. Please do the same.

- J
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  #8  
Old 05-10-2011, 03:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrodpad View Post
I will post pictures if it blooms. Please do the same.

- J
No 'if's" about it
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  #9  
Old 06-14-2011, 02:06 PM
jrodpad jrodpad is offline
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Well, against all odds, I've finally been able to rebloom my struggling little Milt. Like the kinky spikes, the blooms are a little odd in shape... although, I do love the deep color.

Hopefully the other buds will open up too.

Silken, you were right - and here's the proof.

- J
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  #10  
Old 06-14-2011, 02:54 PM
King_of_orchid_growing:) King_of_orchid_growing:) is offline
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The kinked spikes are from inadequate water because the roots were so damaged it couldn't support the watering needs of the plant to produce normal looking leaves or spikes.

It will grow out normally once the plant has grown enough roots over time.

The problem with the damaged roots is not necessarily anything that you did. Remember that before it reached your house, it went through the hands of several different people who were running a store.

Congratulations on the flowers, btw.

Last edited by King_of_orchid_growing:); 06-14-2011 at 03:14 PM..
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