Hello everyone! I am new to this message board and also to orchid-growing. I received my first orchid a couple of weeks ago and its flowers have started to wilt and I am unsure as to why. To make matters worse, I do not know what type of orchid I have, although I think it is a Phal (I've included pictures).
I acquired the orchid from my mother who had it for a month after she brought it home from my aunt's funeral. So it was originally grown or cared for by a florist. Initially it was in a plastic bag with a hole in the bottom and was then placed inside a wooden box. Unfortunately, it stayed like that until I bought a new pot for it last week.
I have to admit that I was prompted to buy a new pot because I noticed the back flower starting to wilt. I researched how to repot and when doing so I noticed that the medium was moldy and some of the roots were brown/black. So, I very carefully removed all of the old medium that I could and put new sphagnum moss in. I also read that you should cut the brown/black roots but I was unsure the correct way of doing this and don't own a pair of shears or whatever they are called. It is incredibly obvious that I am a novice at orchid-growing, isn't it?
Also, I watered the orchid after repotting and put a tiny bit of fertilizer in the water but afterwards I read on this forum that you should not fertilize the orchid when it is in bloom. I do not think this has caused the wilting though because it began before I fertilized. Also, I read that when the leaves are dark emerald green that means the orchid is not receiving enough sunlight so I moved it to a window. It was originally on my bar which may have caused the wilting because I have had the heat on since it is cold here, and I noticed that there is a vent right above the bar. Now that the orchid is by the back door, it is receiving colder air and indirect sunlight but the wiliting has continued. I will say though that the leaves have lightened up to a healthy-looking light green but then again, who am I to say what is healthy?
Bottom line, I am trying very hard to keep this little sucker alive and am looking for some advice or insight regarding the wilting. Also, if the flowers do fall off how do I tell if it is still a viable plant and how do I care for it to encourage another bloom? Thanks in advance for any help that is offered!
The roots. Sorry the picture isn't clearer.
Here is the new pot and new medium. Is the size okay? There are a plethora of drainage holes on the bottom which is great but I think I might need to switch to a heavier pot because the orchid keeps trying to tilt over and I have to prop it against a weight or something.
Here are the leaves BEFORE moving the orchid to the back door. They are a dark, emerald green. There is also a small white blemish on the bottom leaf that has been there since before I received it.
Here is a picture of the leaves AFTER moving the orchid to the back door. The white stuff in the center on the leaves is just sphagnum debris. I blew it off after taking the picture. The small white blemish is still there though.