HELP! Pulled all leaves off baby vanda!
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Old 10-06-2018, 12:56 AM
stellastella stellastella is offline
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HELP! Pulled all leaves off baby vanda!
Default HELP! Pulled all leaves off baby vanda!

Hello! I'm a total orchid novice. A friend recently gifted me some vandas. I've killed three and there was one finally! finally doing well with all the monsoon rains. I decided it was time to pull off all the dead roots. I gripped the leaves (stupid, stupid), pulled the roots- and the leaves came off!!

I confess I cried.

Have I killed it?! The roots seem to still be going strong (this was three days ago) and the leaves are actually still green. I've been submerging both in water once a day.

Sorry pics are crooked... can't figure out how to rotate. Anyone have any advice on what I should do from here? Would be so appreciated...

thank you!
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Last edited by stellastella; 10-06-2018 at 01:25 AM..
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Old 10-06-2018, 01:44 AM
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Roberta Roberta is offline
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HELP! Pulled all leaves off baby vanda!

Join Date: Jun 2008
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Location: Coastal southern California, USA
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HELP! Pulled all leaves off baby vanda! Female

My condolences. I do think it is quite dead. But you did not kill it by pulling the leaves, the crown (the growth point where the leaves attached) was rotted (a healthy plant does not come apart so easily). I am not familiar with growing in your climate, but since Vandas usually love rain and high humidity, I have to suspect that there was not sufficient air movement to dry the plant after the soaking. Or it was unhealthy to begin with (always a possibility)
"Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence" Carl Sagan
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Old 10-06-2018, 05:00 PM
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King_of_orchid_growing:) King_of_orchid_growing:) is offline
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How did you grow the orchid?

It looks like you are growing it in water. For a beginner, that is not advisable. Vanda roots require a significant amount of air. If you water frequently enough and the relative humidity is moderate to high, then you shouldn't have to worry too much about desiccation.

The use of full water culture, (FWC), in my opinion, is not necessary for growing Vandas. I think that FWC is something best left to try when you become a bit more advanced in skill set. I believe that right now, it is best to focus on the basics. Perhaps when you become more comfortable with understanding the fundamentals of orchid growing, then you may try using FWC as a possible technique.

As a disclaimer, FWC may not work well in all cases.

In the case of Vandas, it is usually better to underwater than to overwater. If you underwater, at least you have the luxury of providing more. If you overwater, then you get the rots coming in that destroy the plants.

The large majority of rots are not primarily caused by disease organisms. In the majority of cases, disease organisms are a secondary occurrence due to the plant's immune system being compromised as a result of improper cultural practices, which in turn causes the plants to stress out severely.

It might still be salvageable considering that there are still living roots. However, do not go overboard with the watering again, or you will most definitely lose the entire plant. If you are considering salvaging the plant, just know that realistically, it could take up to anywhere around 10 years for the plant to fully recover from such a devastating situation.

I had an Ascocentrum (Vanda) miniatum that had lost 5 - 6 leaves until it only had 2 remaining. It took up to 1 year to produce 1 new leaf. Now, I have a total of 3 leaves.

Recovering Vandas from such a loss is possible if a clump of tissue in the center of the root mass (called meristematic tissue) is still alive. Meristematic tissue is the plant equivalent of an animal's stem cells. Meristematic tissue are made up of generalized plant cells that can become more specialized plant cells.

1st and foremost you must get your cultural conditions correct. If it is not corrected, you will continue to run into the same problems repeatedly.

Last edited by King_of_orchid_growing:); 10-06-2018 at 06:09 PM..
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Old 10-06-2018, 05:16 PM
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MattWoelfsen MattWoelfsen is offline
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Many orchid people grow orchids in “water culture”. It looks you did that with this Vanda? I have seen Vanda growing in glass vases. But the water is drained and allowed to dry out before re-emerging in water. Also, growing this way, the base of the plant is always above the water.

This plant experienced crown rot. Water stayed too long on the stem.

If you get another seedling Vanda and want to continue to try water culture, search this orchid board “water culture” and you will see how to use this technique.
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finally, killed, leaves, roots, water

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