Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue
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  #1  
Old 11-02-2023, 01:04 AM
Weaver Weaver is offline
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue Female
Default Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue

Hello, I have an Paph Hilo Black Eagle (shipped from a reputable vendor) that arrived today with possible root issues. The roots that are visible at the top of the planting medium are black and they were cold and clammy to the touch when I unboxed it. Almost a “tacky” sensation when touching them. My gut says to unpot it and prune away any rotted material, but it is in spike…looking for advice on whether to wait it out and see what happens or take the risk and pop it out of the pot. It appears (from looking at the roots exposed by displaced material during shipment) that the plant had been in a 4” pot and was recently moved into a 6” pot; the roots are clearly wound in a square shape and not integrated into amy surrounding media.

I have the plant quarantined away from the rest of my orchids (standard procedure after I lost nearly my entire collection about 5 years ago to a bug infestation that spread around from a plant I brought in). Before that incident, I had a fairly nice collection of paphs and phrags, purchased mostly from local nurseries as well as a few multiflorals purchased from the NW Garden Show. I am regrowing that collection, finally!

I will try and attach some pics and I would appreciate advice on how to proceed. I have emailed the vendor asking the same question, FYI. The first pic is an overall plant view; second shows the “square” root growth; third shows the exposed blackened roots.

Thanks so much for any assistance you can provide!
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Old 11-02-2023, 01:41 AM
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue Female
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If in spike, I would let it settle into its new home. Remember, Paph roots are different than roots of epiphytes. Brown and fuzzy is normal for them. Even when you do repot, don't be aggressive about trimming roots. Especially with Paphs, it can be hard to tell good from bad, When you repot, just rinse them off and put into new medium. So in short, I don't think that you have a problem. Enjoy the flowers, then repot gently. Quarantine is always a good idea with a new plant, as you found out the hard way. You could try soaking the pot in water for a bit... if there are any creepy crawlers in there, they'll likely come out gasping for air.
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Old 11-02-2023, 02:09 AM
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue Female
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Thank you for your reply Roberta. Yes, brown and fuzzy was what I was expecting to see, but the black and shriveled appearance surprised me a bit. Ive never seen (healthy) paph roots so dark black before, but this is also my first roth so perhaps that is normal for them? A medium brown up to even a dark chocolate brown for older roots is what all of my paph roots have looked like thus far. Thank you, again!
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Old 11-02-2023, 09:22 AM
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue Male
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Apparently, it was plucked out of a smaller pot and moved up not long before shipping.

Like Roberta, I would recommend treating it normally, keeping it evenly, lightly moist.

If you have some Kelpak, add a tablespoon per gallon for the next few waterings. Not only will it stimulate more root branching and growth, but it will help the plant get over its recent stresses. It may enhance the flowering, as well.
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Old 11-02-2023, 02:12 PM
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue Female
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Thank you, Ray, for weighing in. I appreciate the advice! I have always tended to over-water so I am hyper-alert to rotting roots (knowing my own tendencies ;-) ). I will post pics as the spike progresses (under the correct topic, I mean). As I mentioned, Ive been mostly out of orchid growing..just the few that I managed to save from my original collection, growing on a windowsill and mostly neglected due to time-constraints, tho theyve done their plant-thing and continued to bloom every other year. Fingers crossed these additions do well! Thanks again!
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Old 11-02-2023, 02:59 PM
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue Male
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You're highly unlikely to overwater Paphs. in appropriate, fresh media. Underwatering is more the problem with Paphs.
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Old 11-02-2023, 04:57 PM
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue Female
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Thank you, estación seca, for your reply! Yes, this is very true! Old soured media, of course, being another story. I learned to repot often (as soon as the media started to hold onto water too easily) to compensate for my love-to-water habits. I suspect that my neglect of my remaining paphs (even tho they hadnt been repotted in four-five years) worked to my advantage in that i rarely had time to water them, even.
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Old 11-04-2023, 05:47 PM
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue Female
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Ray, if I could ask a follow up question about kelpak? I dont have any, but went to purchase some and wondered if the specific orchid solution is the formulation you were referring to, or the generic biostim formulation? Many thanks!
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Old 11-06-2023, 10:56 AM
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue Male
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Weaver View Post
Ray, if I could ask a follow up question about kelpak? I dont have any, but went to purchase some and wondered if the specific orchid solution is the formulation you were referring to, or the generic biostim formulation? Many thanks!
It's what Ray referred to.

I started for all my new plants that I got from shipping them the 1 teaspoon Kelpak / 1 gallon of water solution for the first couple of waterings.

Ray will send a paper with some extra guidance on how you can use the solution whenever you receive it.

Last edited by alecStewart1; 11-06-2023 at 11:05 AM.. Reason: Woops!
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Old 11-06-2023, 04:19 PM
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Advice: Paphiopedilum Hilo Black Eagle (in spike) arrived with possible root issue Female
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Thank you alecStewart for your reply! Is it the kelpak called the “orchid formulation” or the one called “biostimulant”? Their (kelpak’s) website lists both and I am not sure which one is appropriate in this situation. Thanks again!
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