Phal. growth cycles?
User Name

Registration is FREE. Click to become a member of OrchidBoard community
(You're NOT logged in)

menu menu

Donate Now
and become
Forum Supporter.

Phal. growth cycles?
Many perks!



Fauna Top Sites
Old 05-08-2013, 07:00 PM
escualida escualida is offline
Senior Member

Join Date: Sep 2012
Zone: 7b
Location: Manhattan, NY
Posts: 565
Phal. growth cycles?
Default Phal. growth cycles?

Hi all, I only started growing orchids less than a year ago and have quite a few phals. A lot of them came in bloom or in spike but some didn't, and I've actually never had a spike initiate on my watch.

I have a few phals that are currently going through some kind of root growth spurt where they're putting out a ton of new roots which is great, but it got me thinking, do phals generally have some sort of cycle they go through? Like stages where they'll have a lot of root growth, then leaf growth, and then a spike?

I know there are different opinions on how to get spikes to initiate using day length and temperature, but for people who grow them in the same lighting and temp conditions year round, do you notice that spikes form whenever or at a certain stage in the growth?

Not sure if this question makes sense, just curious.
Reply With Quote
Post Thanks / Like - 1 Likes
Likes ronaldhanko liked this post
Old 05-08-2013, 09:19 PM
quiltergal quiltergal is offline
Senior Member

Join Date: Apr 2007
Zone: 8b
Location: Southern Oregon
Age: 65
Posts: 6,018

Most of my Phals have a pretty set internal schedule of what they do when.

The novelty Phals which have a lot of summer blooming species in them tend to initiate spikes as the weather starts getting warmer, so mid to late spring, and bloom late spring through summer. If the temps are warm enough they will generally grow year round though slower when temps are cooler.

Most of the standard hybrid Phals grow leaves and roots during the spring/summer, and initiate spikes in the fall as temps decrease blooming late winter/early spring.

I should say that I cut all spikes except for some species and novelties when they are done blooming. There are some that will throw a spike whenever but they are the exception rather than the rule.
Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2013, 09:22 PM
WhiteRabbit's Avatar
WhiteRabbit WhiteRabbit is offline
Super Moderator

Join Date: May 2008
Zone: 9a
Location: Nor Cal
Posts: 26,643

I grow Phals indoors, on windowsills - the amount and intensity of light changes with the seasons, temps also (I don't have A/C, and keep heat rather low in winter), so I don't know if my (limited) experience is applicable ? And I guess different species and hybrids may be different - but, Yes, mine do little in winter, early spring I see roots and foliage starting, followed shortly by spikes.

Where ever you go, there you are ...
Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2013, 10:19 PM
NYCorchidman NYCorchidman is offline
Senior Member

Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 7,196
Phal. growth cycles?

Your question makes perfect sense. I think Terri above basically answered your question already.

I live in the same city as you do.
My apartment has large windows that face south. Almost all my phals are growing within 2 meters away from these windows. So they get brief direct sun but mostly just very bright indirect light. in the winter they get more direct light as the sun light comes in at a lower angle.
Temp in my place ranges from 100-70 in the summer and 80-65 in the winter (when the sun isn't out, then day high is much lower, but warm enough I don't have to run heater)

Humidity is quite low although I water them good and mist the exposed top roots everyday.

I would say ALMOST (because they are exceptions as with everythign else) all large phal hybrids grow during the warm season (all year round if warm enough) and when the temp dips in the fall, they get ready for spike and bloom in the middle of winter or early spring in my condition.

I do have some that seem to have mind of their own and bloom whenever though.

Commercial phal nurseries control temperature and that is why flowering phals are available throughout the year. As your new blooming phals finishes flowering, they will take some time to figure out the new conditions, and then grow and flower as Terri described.

In the meantime while they are adjusting, you can trick them into flowering some more.
For example, a typical phal hybrid that normally flowers in the spring (the one that takes lower temp as a cue to initiate spikes) were bought in the summer or early fall. Flowers fell off by mid fall. With the lower temp, it made some more flowers on the spike and went on for quite some time.
Now the plant is growing new leaves as the days are getting much warmer. I think I can safely say this one is now adjusted to my home condition.

Like you, I buy phals any time I see something I like.
Most of them are manupluated to bloom at "odd" time for them for us.
So eventually they all bloom around late winter to early spring once they are adjusted to your home environment.
I always get lots of phal bloom around March-May.

Last edited by NYCorchidman; 05-08-2013 at 10:21 PM..
Reply With Quote
Post Thanks / Like - 2 Likes
Likes escualida, Jayfar liked this post
Old 05-09-2013, 12:30 AM
escualida escualida is offline
Senior Member

Join Date: Sep 2012
Zone: 7b
Location: Manhattan, NY
Posts: 565
Phal. growth cycles?

Ok, I'm growing them under LEDs so they get pretty much the same amount of light all of the time, and the temps are also pretty consistent. If they stay in the same conditions all of the time will they just initiate the spikes whenever, or not at all?
Reply With Quote
Old 05-09-2013, 10:15 AM
NYCorchidman NYCorchidman is offline
Senior Member

Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 7,196
Phal. growth cycles?

Theoretically, under constant temperature, they would not initiate spikes.

By the way, you would think growing them away away from the windowsill deprive them of temperature fluctuations, but believe it or not, I have one large white/red lip phal and one medium sized white/pink candy stripe phal that I grew under LED all summer in 2011 and in the fall (October) they both did spike!!!

but then I moved them out of the light set up and put it by the window for more space for the growing spikes and the more natural light hoping for the best possible flower count. and I got 8 flowers in the spring on both of them. not bad, right?

I think plants pick up even the little change in the pattern of temperature or whatever else changes in different seasons.
I did not run heater at night, so maybe that helped too, but honestly, I had them all in the kitchen which was away away from the window area where temperature swing can easily be detected.
Reply With Quote
Post Thanks / Like - 1 Likes
Likes escualida liked this post


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
patented or trademarked orchids. pinkham Propagation 49 06-03-2012 06:17 PM
New Phal growth - not sure what this is? alannanoelle Beginner Discussion 10 09-02-2011 12:06 PM
OMG! What a JOB!! Finally made my Chid list! Jkelee Orchid Lounge 28 02-05-2011 07:49 PM
First phal - new leaf growth NTN Beginner Discussion 3 08-18-2010 05:24 PM
Phal seedling blowout littlefrog Auto Generated Threads by Classified System 19 10-10-2007 10:57 PM

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:40 AM.

© 2007
Search Engine Optimisation provided by DragonByte SEO v2.0.37 (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Feedback Buttons provided by Advanced Post Thanks / Like (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

Clubs vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.