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Old 02-26-2019, 09:43 AM
Chlorophile Chlorophile is offline

Join Date: Mar 2018
Zone: 6b
Location: NE USA
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I purchased a fairly large Tolumnia from J&L orchids about a year ago. I'm not sure if something was wrong with the plant from the start or if my conditions were just vastly different but it bloomed and then just a few days later it blasted. I repotted it into a clay pot with LECA and the roots took off. The entire plant was solidly rooted in the new media within just a couple weeks.

It was growing new fans and seemed to be doing very well and then all of a sudden leaves started to fall off. I tugged on a few and the plant just came apart. I used some Physan and cut off the rotten parts and it did come back but then the entire thing rotted and I just tossed it. My assumption is that I got water in the crown even though I was very careful not to.

I have 4 tolumnias I purchased from Telezula and they are in the little net pots they came in and are growing very well. I need to re-pot them but I have to admit I'm very nervous. I think clay pots are best for my environment-I live in the NE. Its very humid in Summer but Winters are bone dry. Right now I am soaking the roots a few times a week and they are doing well.

I'm just wondering if it was the clay and LECA that rotted the last one since they are all being watered the same way. Anyone live in the NE USA and grow tolumnias that would share any tips with me? I'd hate to kill these as it seems a few of them are no longer available.
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Old 02-26-2019, 12:03 PM
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Ray Ray is offline
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Oak Island NC
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Tolumnia Questions

I find that if I keep them good and warm, they do much better, never succumbing to such rots.
Ray Barkalow, Orchid Iconoclast
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Old 02-26-2019, 02:25 PM
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estación seca estación seca is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2015
Zone: 9b
Location: Phoenix AZ - Lower Sonoran Desert
Posts: 9,702
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Daryl Venable of Tezula spoke to our society last September. I transcribed some lecture notes and posted them here. You can find them via the Search function in the top maroon menu. Enter DVOS and Tolumnia.

He said the most important factor in preventing rot is a stiff breeze on the plants, to the point they are moving in the wind. Other orchids with softer leaves would be waving strongly in the wind.
It's a dry heat.
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Old 03-13-2019, 12:06 PM
Piper113 Piper113 is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2019
Zone: 10a
Location: Sarasota, FL
Posts: 1
Tolumnia Questions

I would highly recommend watching YouTube videos on tolumnias by Roger Frampton (Roger's Orchids). I had never been successful in the past but after watching a few videos where he explains their culture and showed how to mount them, I understand my mistakes and have taken the plunge again a couple of months ago (with 4 nice ones from Tezula) and so far they're very happy. Biggest lessons I've learned from Roger: they're twig epiphytes so in nature they're out on the small branches of trees/shrubs and receive dew in the mornings and dry out by night; they thrive mounted with just a little sphagnum on the front of the mount; even if the roots appear brown they're still viable for the most part so I leave them; watch out for scale under the dried sheaths and in leaf crevices; don't cut the spikes until they're totally dried out because they can branch producing more blooms; and, yes, good air circulation.
Hope that helps - they're such a pleasure to grow.
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clay, live, plant, purchased, tolumnias

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