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  #1  
Old 08-07-2018, 02:55 PM
thoyu thoyu is offline
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How can I revive this Phalaenopsis?
Default How can I revive this Phalaenopsis?

Hi everyone I'm new to the forum. I adopted 4 orchids (all are phals) from my gf last year and since then 2 of them died

I want to keep the remaining ones alive and hopefully someday get them to bloom again, hoping some of you can give me some advice?

The phal I'm having trouble with is starting to have wrinkles on the leaves and most of the roots have either rotted away or dying. There are 1-2 good/green roots left so I think the plant can still be saved, I just don't know what I'm doing wrong

Light: Currently in my room, which gets a lot of light during the afternoon (southwest window). The plant is sitting on a shelf away from the window as I think the afternoon sunlight might kill it

Medium: Sphagnum moss

Water/Pot: I'm using a clear plastic pot with ventilation. I water it about 1/week or until I feel the moss is dry to the touch and "crispy"

Am I not watering enough? It developed mold in the roots last year because I think I was watering it too much.

Will try to attach pictures
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  #2  
Old 08-07-2018, 03:44 PM
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dounoharm dounoharm is offline
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get rid of that moss! it is too tight and wont let the roots dry! use a medium to large bark mix.

the top/new leaves are stretching towards the light, they aren't getting enough light.

do you cut the old bloom stalks off? I recommend cutting them off, so the plant can grow stronger....if your plant is struggling, trying to get it to bloom again just wont do....

never fertilize an injured or sick plant.
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Old 08-07-2018, 04:03 PM
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Roberta Roberta is offline
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Just to add to the advice from dounoharm ... after you get rid of that moss and replace it with the medium-to-large bark, when you water hold it under the faucet, and let the water run through the pot - that pulls air into the root zone. It will dry out a lot faster in the bark, and that is desirable - it wants "humid air", not "wet". With that big bark, you can water (again, watering so that it runs through the pot) more often - in hot, dry weather that may be twice a week or more. But with the wide-open mix, it's pretty impossible to over-water. (Be sure that it stops dripping before putting in any sort of saucer... sitting in water is a total no-no)

You are correct that direct sun will be too intense for it. Move it gradually toward the window, and feel the leaves when the sun is most direct - if warm to the touch, then move it away, or add a sheer curtain to cut the intensity a bit. But these do need as many hours as possible of good, indirect light.
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Old 08-07-2018, 04:28 PM
thoyu thoyu is offline
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dounoharm - I just bought Orchid mix on Amazon that has fir bark, charcoal, and perlite. It has decent reviews so hopefully that will do the trick.

Amazon.com : Sun Bulb 50000 Better Gro Special Orchid Mix, 4-Quart : Garden & Outdoor

I cut the old stem last year when the flowers fell off and the stem turned yellow.

Will also move the plant closer to the window but away from direct sunlight, and will also stop fertilizing.

Roberta - I'll repot this weekend and follow your advice on watering. I had bad experience with mold before watering like that, but that was with sphagnum

Thanks!!!

Another question. When I previously repotted this plant and removed the black/dead roots, I noticed if I remove the dead root "skin", there is a yellow veiny looking root underneath. Do I trim this off or leave it? Does leaving it benefit the plant at all to support the base of the plant or absorb water?
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Old 08-07-2018, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by thoyu View Post
Another question. When I previously repotted this plant and removed the black/dead roots, I noticed if I remove the dead root "skin", there is a yellow veiny looking root underneath. Do I trim this off or leave it? Does leaving it benefit the plant at all to support the base of the plant or absorb water?
That skinny root under the "skin" - the velamen - can benefit the plant. It isn't as efficient as a new root with healthy velamen (which acts like a sponge) but can still transmit water to the plant, just by capillary action (think "wet string") Also it will help anchor the plant firmly in the new medium, and that is really important - when potted, you don't want the plant to wobble - that can break the tiny hairs on the developing new root tips. So leave those stringy roots if they aren't black and rotten.
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Old 08-11-2018, 03:19 PM
thoyu thoyu is offline
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Just repotted the Orchid this morning. I trimmed off a few dead roots but mostly, I just peeled off the velamen and left the "string" still attached for support in the new medium

A few of the longer roots I left on didn't look too great, but when I pinched them, it felt solid and full so I decided not to trim them off. Should I have trimmed them off anyways since they're darker than usual?

1st pic is how it looked like when I removed it from the sphagnum. 2nd and 3rd pic is after I removed the roots and right before repotting

I also noticed the short root near the top of the plant has a red spot on there, does this look like sunburn?

I soaked the roots for 15 minutes before repotting and also rinsed the medium to wash off the dirt/dust. I read the package and it didn't seem like the bark required soaking before potting

Fingers crossed!
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Old 08-11-2018, 03:24 PM
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Roberta Roberta is offline
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Originally Posted by thoyu View Post
A few of the longer roots I left on didn't look too great, but when I pinched them, it felt solid and full so I decided not to trim them off. Should I have trimmed them off anyways since they're darker than usual?
There aren't that many roots, so you were right to leave anything that was somewhat firm. Don't worry about the color. New roots will be "prettier" but you need the ones that are left to keep the plant going until it can grow a new batch.
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Old 08-11-2018, 09:14 PM
aliceinwl aliceinwl is offline
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When re-potting Phals into fresh bark with poor root systems, I’ve had the best luck watering by soaking the pot for ~5 minutes. Fresh dry bark tends to be a bit hydrophobic so you may have to increase watering frequency relative to what you would do with older media as you break it in.

I also still use the skewer method in the sticky at the top of the forum to gauge when to water plants with poor root systems. Because, there are so few roots there are often none up against the plastic so I can’t go by color (water when roots are silver, hold off when roots are green) and I tend to start second guessing myself when I try to go by weight.
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Old 08-15-2018, 02:20 AM
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estación seca estación seca is offline
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There is a good thread here on Orchid Board dealing with growing Phals. From the yellow menu at left select Forums then Beginners. Near the top look for the sticky thread The Phal abuse stops here.
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