Accordion Leaves on Restrepia brachypus
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  #1  
Old 10-03-2018, 05:30 PM
Amac Amac is offline
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Accordion Leaves on Restrepia brachypus Male
Default Accordion Leaves on Restrepia brachypus

I acquired a Restrepia brachypus at the end of May from an online vendor that looked a little rough in my opinion. Lots of accordion leaves and a fair number of black/brown spots on other leaves, and even chunks missing from some of the leaves. The plant I received was much bigger than I anticipated (I had planned to place it in a terrarium) and so it now lives on my windowsill.

It is currently planted in only sphagnum moss inside a slotted clear plastic orchid pot that has been placed inside a large coffee mug (I was clearly not prepared for a windowsill setup haha and just used what I had). The plant seems to be doing well however, growing multiple keiki and blooming almost continuously with 2-4 blooms at a time over the last 4 months.



My only concern is that about all of the new leaves that have sprouted over the last 4 months have also been accordion leaves. I have continued to increase the amount of watering and over the last three month have been keeping the sphagnum constantly wet, often with a little water pooling at the bottom of the coffee mug. This has resulted in even faster growth, but I continue to get accordion leaves in my new growth.

What am I doing wrong? I thought accordion leaves were due to dehydration. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
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  #2  
Old 10-03-2018, 06:07 PM
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If you think your watering regimen is adequate then increase humidity. You won't lose anything by checking the roots condition.
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Old 10-03-2018, 06:09 PM
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My guess would be low air humidity. Where do you live, and what is the humidity like?

At any rate, it seems to be healthy and blooming.
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Old 10-03-2018, 07:05 PM
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Accordion Leaves on Restrepia brachypus
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Many of the Pleuros need to be grown in a bowl, vase, terrarium, etc. to help with the humidity. The leaves lose water faster than their roots can draw it into the plant. If you have a World Market near where you live, they sell table top greenhouses that are just perfect. I use one for my Dracula.
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Old 10-03-2018, 07:31 PM
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IKEA also has one for $20.00.
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Old 10-03-2018, 11:13 PM
Amac Amac is offline
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Accordion Leaves on Restrepia brachypus Male
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orchid Whisperer View Post
My guess would be low air humidity. Where do you live, and what is the humidity like?

At any rate, it seems to be healthy and blooming.
I live in Michigan so the air is not exactly dry, especially in the summer, but I hadn't considered that the leaves my be loosing too much water despite the roots having a constant supply.
I will have to look into a table top green house as others have suggested!
Thanks for all the quick replies!
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Old 10-14-2018, 12:11 AM
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Be careful not to overwater. These can still be overwatered. Do not worry about the accordion leaves that it came with. If those accordion leaves happened under your care, then the adjustments should be made.

From the way that the older leaves look, I have reason to believe that they may have either been not watered enough at the nursery you bought this plant from or that the roots may have had a good amount of damage done to them so that insufficient uptake of water occurred.

Root damage that leads to insufficient water uptake can also cause this problem.

Having grown this species before, I know that this orchid does not require very high humidity. A moderate to high humidity range of 50% - 90% is perfectly acceptable. Relative humidity that falls anywhere within this range will not cause accordion leaf with this species.

The moss can dry to the point where it is barely damp before it needs to be watered again. In fact, if the media goes completely dry for no more than 1 day, it will not be a problem for this species.
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Old 10-14-2018, 02:25 PM
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Accordion Leaves on Restrepia brachypus Male
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Restrepias tend to come from very wet areas where humidity is almost always extremely high. Pleated leaves are a result of too little water available to the plant. Water available to the plant is a balance between water at the roots and water transpired to the air. If you can't water any more you need to decrease leaf transpiration by raising humidity.
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