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Go Back   Orchid Board - Most Complete Orchid Forum on the web ! > ORCHID DISCUSSIONS > Beginner Discussion
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  #1  
Unread 12-04-2012, 07:33 AM
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Default Mushy leaves on my Phalaenopsis?

Hey guys, just wanted to check if I should do anything about these leaves, seeing as how they're all mushy to the touch and yellowing slightly.

They're the original leaves from when I got the phal about a year and a half ago. By the way, the white line on one of the leaves is mechanical damage from when I last brought it back to the office.

I don't think it's doing too badly since it's shooting fresh roots all over the place and has two new spikes coming in and a fresh offshoot from an old spike. Also, all the newer leaves are very firm to the touch and a deeper green.

So, anything I should do?
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Mushy leaves on my Phalaenopsis?-2012-12-04-11.25.11.jpg   Mushy leaves on my Phalaenopsis?-2012-12-04-11.25.51.jpg  
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  #2  
Unread 12-04-2012, 02:18 PM
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They are just the old leaves, I believe. They look fine to me and I would leave them alone. Someone else may know better here as I have only had orchids for about 4 years.
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  #3  
Unread 12-04-2012, 02:53 PM
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It seems to me that these are just some older leaves that are following their natural die-off. I would say to just leave them alone and keep doing whatever you're doing. If this is die-off, the yellowing/mushyness will only be on the leaves that have already started and will not spread to these new leaves. Eventually they will just fall off or can be trimmed off as they brown, etc. If there is any spread to the new leaves, then you have another problem on your hands.
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  #4  
Unread 12-05-2012, 09:04 AM
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Alright, I'll leave em be. Bad pun not intended.

While I'm asking, did I cut this stem too close to the joint? It hasn't rebloomed for over a year now, and in that time it's gotten at least four new shoots. The extremely deep green at the top here doesn't go all the way down the shoot either.
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  #5  
Unread 12-05-2012, 10:08 AM
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The leaf looks OK from the picture, and could just be old.

It concerns me that you say it's mushy though as that doesn't sound good. What do you mean mushy, if it's just limp that is probably just an old leaf, but mushy makes me think of the leaf structure being soft so your finger goes through it easily.

The spike looks fine, personally I usually cut them right down to the bottom near the base of the plant, but while it's not dead it's fine to leave like that and may grow more flowers.

New flowers can come from brand new spikes so if that spike has any problems it should still flower. You can't stop it flowering just by cutting a spike in the wrong place. Usually in most phals the spikes will start as the weather cools at this time of year. However if you have a warm home sometimes that can stop them flowering. Many people say they need about 5F drop to trigger flowering. Some phals are triggered by light levels instead.

However phals grown/sold for the mass market are artificially forced to bloom at a set time (by careful control of temps) and this can mean that when you bring them home their natural rhythm has been thrown off. It's quite common for them to take 18 months to fall back in line, so if this was new about a year ago you may find you have to wait for next year's cool season.
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  #6  
Unread 12-05-2012, 10:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RosieC View Post
The leaf looks OK from the picture, and could just be old.

It concerns me that you say it's mushy though as that doesn't sound good. What do you mean mushy, if it's just limp that is probably just an old leaf, but mushy makes me think of the leaf structure being soft so your finger goes through it easily.

The spike looks fine, personally I usually cut them right down to the bottom near the base of the plant, but while it's not dead it's fine to leave like that and may grow more flowers.
Yeah, "limp" is probably a better word for it. Reckon they're just getting old as you say. I'll just clip em down and put some cinnamon on when they get too ugly I guess =)

The reason I'm asking about that spike is that the plant's flowered several times in the year and a half that I've had it. Just not from that spike, which is the oldest one on the plant (which was flowering when I received it).
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  #7  
Unread 12-10-2012, 08:58 AM
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If you just leave the spikes and the plant decides to flower again then I would let it, leaving a spike on will not mean the plant will flower when it's too week. However it's possible to cut a spike just above a node to force side spikes and more flowers. This is a bad idea, especially on a week plant as it can force them to flower when they don't have enough energy.

If there are several limp leaves it could be a sign of root problems, however those problems could already be in the past as generally the leaves don't plump up again (though sometimes they do). You say you have a lot of roots growing so that's a good sign and I would not worry to much in that case, especially as you say the new leaves look good
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  #8  
Unread 12-18-2012, 04:48 AM
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Sure enough, patience paid off. There's a fresh spike coming outta that barren spike =)

That brings the grand total to four new spikes at once! =D
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  #9  
Unread 12-19-2012, 01:54 AM
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Plants flower when they are ready. Yes you can force them to flower but why. Let them get healthy, QUIT MESSING WITH THEM, and they will do their thing. If this one flowers with 4 spikes, I will bet it dies a quick death sooner rather than later. I've seen multi spike phals but most took a real beating unless they were in tip top shape. There are no pbulbs to feed the flowers and in phals all the extra energy is stored in the leaves. That may be a reason your leaves are flacid. And yellowing. They have given all they had and now are dieing. Just something to think about.
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  #10  
Unread 12-19-2012, 03:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by james mickelso View Post
Plants flower when they are ready. Yes you can force them to flower but why. Let them get healthy, QUIT MESSING WITH THEM, and they will do their thing.
Not sure what you mean by "messing with them"? Been watering this fella once every 10 to 14 days for the last two years now. Also been giving it fertilizer (growth or bloom variants as needed) every 2-4 waterings depending on season. Finally I've repotted it in fresh soil and a clean pot when there was some algae/moss growing in the pot. Anything in there qualifying as "messing"?
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