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  #1  
Old 06-12-2018, 09:58 PM
lkatwest lkatwest is offline
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phalaenopsis hasnt bloomed in ~3 years
Default phalaenopsis hasnt bloomed in ~3 years

In early 2015 i received 2 orchids as a gift. They were blooming when i received them. They were both in moss so as soon as the blooms died i planted them into bark. One was sitting in an east window and another in a west window. However now they we both in west windows as we recently moved to a new house. I water them once every 7 days by letting tap water run through the pot for 30 seconds, then i fill the sink and plop them in with some fertilizer for 5 minutes. I drain any water from the pots and sit back by the sill. Anything I could do differently to get them to bloom??
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Old 06-12-2018, 10:52 PM
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phalaenopsis hasnt bloomed in ~3 years
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Am I correct to assume they are phalaenopsis plants?

Define "some fertilizer" - Formula, amount used, etc. While you're at it, tell us more about the temperature conditions the pants get, and how well they're doing, other than not blooming.

My first two thoughts are temperature and nitrogen.

Too much nitrogen can stop blooming, but there is also the case in which, while they grow great when kept very warm, they may not put out a flower spike until they are exposed to a couple of weeks of exposure to an average reduction in growing temperature of about 7-10°C.
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  #3  
Old 06-13-2018, 07:06 PM
lkatwest lkatwest is offline
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Yes they are both phalaenopsis. The fertilizer is Orchid Food by Schultz - a bright blue grainy powder. Its 19-31-17. I don't have a bucket or anything to put them in so I fill my entire sink up and put them in, with about a teaspoon of it (I stop the water as it reaches the top of the pot so that it doesn't reach the crown). I have been doing that since December, and since then they have sprouted several new leaves each and a ton of new roots. Before that they never grew roots and grew a new leaf maaaybe once a year. Before that I was just letting water run through the pot for 30 seconds 1x per week and I never fertilized. Our house was colder over winter especially in the nights (about 18 degrees, and 20-21 during the day but the difference wasn't huge). Not it is summer so it is always warm.
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Old 06-13-2018, 08:48 PM
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It would be good to estimate the volume of water in which you're soaking the plants. Can you get a length x width x depth, or estimate it? If it's under about 10 liters, then I think you're overfeeding.

Secondly, while phals grow great at room temperature - although they'd really prefer to be hot - 35° or more is not out of the question - the key to triggering the growth of flower spikes is to expose a healthy plant to about two weeks of an average growing temperature about 6°-10°C lower than that in which they've been being grown.

For example, if over the summer, they are seeing 20° nights and 28° days, that's an average of 24°, so when getting them to spike, you need to shift that average to 14°-18° for a couple of weeks.
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Last edited by Ray; 06-13-2018 at 08:50 PM..
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Old 06-13-2018, 10:17 PM
lkatwest lkatwest is offline
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Okay. How would I do that in the summer? Could I just leave them outside under a tree for a few weeks?

It is so frustrating because I have 2 other friends who have orchids, and they do nothing special and get multiple blooms per year grrrr.
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:09 PM
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You can leave them out in fall as it cools down. They take very cool nights well if the next day gets warm. They won't tolerate anything close to freezing.
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Old 06-14-2018, 07:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lkatwest View Post
Okay. How would I do that in the summer? Could I just leave them outside under a tree for a few weeks?

It is so frustrating because I have 2 other friends who have orchids, and they do nothing special and get multiple blooms per year grrrr.

That is where my non-blooming phals are right now. They are under a tree. I squirt them with hose water about 2X per day (it gets 90-100 here so they dry out easily). I fertilize about once every 2 weeks. All my plants are outside now: Cattleyas, dendrobiums, phals, paphs, phrags. Also my epiphytic cacti, and Hoyas. (I think that is all).

4 of my phals are in bloom right now, so they are inside where I can enjoy the blooms. I bring in plants that bloom, and then when the blooms are gone, they go right out. Although these plants do great in houses, frankly nothing is better for them than a real "outside environment."

Once they have died off, they will go outside too. In late October they come in to live under lights until next spring.

---------- Post added at 05:50 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:48 PM ----------

Oh-- we do not have squirrels or deer in this part of the country. If you have squirrel or deer problems you might need a chicken wire cage or something like that for your orchids. Sorry to say, orchids are extremely tempting food items for small furry creatures. So beware.
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