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  #1  
Old 09-11-2018, 06:49 PM
lvwood lvwood is offline
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recently overpotted phal: repot or not?
Unhappy recently overpotted phal: repot or not?

I am a beginner at this, so I'm looking forward to help from some much more confident orchid-lovers.
I recently repotted a phalaenopsis that I've had for about 2 years. It was looking ok before I repotted, but soon after the bottom leaves began yellowing and dropping off. I wasn't worried about the bottom leaf as I knew it was old, but then the leaf right above it started going too. The roots look brownish-black and appear to have a white crust (mold?) growing on them.
I've been reading up and it appears to me that I probably overpotted it.
Can I repot now or would it be better to just leave it? Any advice is appreciated!
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Old 09-11-2018, 07:03 PM
rbarata rbarata is offline
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recently overpotted phal: repot or not? Male
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In my oppinion your plant looks ok and the pot is not that big (especially because the bark is coarse with a reasonable size).

Do you know what's your room temperature and humidity. Also your watering frequency is an important info.
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Old 09-11-2018, 11:36 PM
lvwood lvwood is offline
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recently overpotted phal: repot or not?
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Thanks rbarata.
The room is usually in the mid 70s farenheit. I don't know the humidity, but I live in Kansas, so summertime is usually fairly humid.
I generally water every 7-10 days, whenever the medium seems fully dry.
Thanks for the help!
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Old 09-11-2018, 11:40 PM
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estación seca estación seca is offline
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Welcome to the Orchid Board!

When you repotted it, did all the roots look like that?

The ones showing are dead. If the rest of the roots look like that, you are going to have to re-root the plant to get it to survive. It can certainly make it, but you can't treat it like a normal plant in a pot.
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Old 09-12-2018, 06:42 PM
lvwood lvwood is offline
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Thank you estacion seca,
when I repotted it all the roots were pretty dark, but most of them were still firm, not shriveled.

There are some roots below the surface that still feel firm, so I'm just not sure if I should pull it out of the pot again or let it be for now.
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Old 09-13-2018, 08:50 AM
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Water it more! Phalaenopsis prefer constant moisture, and with that coarse bark, the roots will still get plenty of air, even when saturated.
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Old 09-13-2018, 09:33 AM
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Paphluvr Paphluvr is offline
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Is that potting mix old or is it Shultz brand? I find their potting mix to be crap (too much fine material and the bark always looks old). I realize that in some markets this may be all someone can find but there are better mixes available.
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Old 09-13-2018, 11:33 AM
aliceinwl aliceinwl is offline
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Phals can handle re-potting well. I think you’ve handicapped yourself a bit by potting into a relatively opaque container. In a clear container it’s much easier to monitor root health and you can use root color as an indicator of when to water: hold off when roots are green, water when they’re silver. If you come across a good clear container it might be worth repotting again.

In the current mix I would recommend watering by soaking if you’re not already. New bark can be kind of hydrophobic and takes time to soak up water. Soak the plant for about 5 minutes, then let all the water drain out.

I would also recommend giving the skewer method in the sticky a try. I still use skewers in Phals I’ve overpotted as a watering aid: does the plant really need watering or is there actually still plenty of moisture in the interior. I can’t go off root color on these because the roots are obscured by substrate and the skewers are a useful check on my tendency to overwater.

Good luck!

---------- Post added at 08:33 AM ---------- Previous post was at 08:09 AM ----------

I would also second Paphluvr’s concern. If your media has a lot of fine soil like particles, your Phal likely won’t do well. If this is the case you could try rinsing the media over a strainer to remove the fines, order a coarser mix, or mix your own. I haven’t had success with any of the prepackaged media available in local stores. I ended up ordering orchiata bark, perlite, and charcoal and mixing 5:1:1 parts together and using that. Retailers like rePotme.com also sell some good prepackaged mixes if the convenience is worth the expense.

If you suspect the media may not be working it’s better to repot sooner rather than later. In my experience, Phals with poor root health tend to suffer some additional root death upon repotting. They often don’t start really looking good again until they start sending out new roots. As long as there’s at least one viable root all have eventually bounced back and thrived.
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Old 09-13-2018, 09:32 PM
lvwood lvwood is offline
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Thanks everybody for your help. Though the media is new, it is a cheap big-box store mix. I soaked it tonight and will keep an eye out, but it's good to hear that phals handle repotting well, as I think that may be my next step with a clear pot and better mix. Thanks!!
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