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  #1  
Unread 09-29-2010, 12:54 PM
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Default Neo. falcata not doing much

I have one neo. falcata (my first) and one neo x vanda. The vanda cross I purchased I march, it is in spike for the third time since I got it. It grows in a plastic basket with tightly packed spaghnum. It is very happy whereas the falcata isn't as happy. I grow the on a piece of cork bark with some spaghnum around the roots, but most is decayed. The falcata finally flowered for the first time in June or July. I have had it at least three years. It has three fans, none of them have seemed to grow even a bit but have had good root activity.

Any advice on how to beef up the falcata or at least inspire the fan to do something? I fertilize a little haphazardly so its usually once a week with superthrive. So, should I change the mount or just add more spag, or should I just try to be more patient and stop expecting vanda size results
From a neo?
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  #2  
Unread 09-29-2010, 12:56 PM
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Lol not sure how the sad face got it my last post which was supposed to say neo. I guess the computer sensed my distress. Lol
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  #3  
Unread 09-29-2010, 01:58 PM
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I would say "yes, don't expect the vanda result from the neo". I only have been growing neos for a little over 3 years now.. and I find that my plants don't grow and flower well if they do not get a cold dry winter rest.

In previous two winters, I left my plants in a cool room with east facing windows.. occasionally gets to 7-8 degrees celcius at night and I only water them once every 2-3 weeks or so. Then when spring comes (early march or late feb) I see lots of new roots, leaves and fans, every plant was in active growing mode! Also i have lots of flowers in the summer.

Last winter I moved all my plants to the new grow room which is more intermediate (but under MH light so they get light everyday!) and water every week. I thought they'd be happier but no.. very little new growth and most plants did not flower this year. I'm not gonna repeat my mistake this winter

... and I find they grow best with just plain water. They don't respond to fertilizers well...

Last edited by Jorch; 09-29-2010 at 02:00 PM..
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  #4  
Unread 09-29-2010, 02:11 PM
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You certainly know that mounted plants need way more humidity than potted ones... and Neofinetia love humidity during growing season... Being in FL you should have the humidity, but maybe you don't give it enough water ? Adding moss on the mount is an option, as long as you let it dry btw waterings.
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  #5  
Unread 09-29-2010, 02:20 PM
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I found the same as Jorch. They're slow grower to start with. I also kept mine too warm and probably too moist last winter and they hardly grew at all this year.

Cheers.
Jim
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  #6  
Unread 09-29-2010, 05:09 PM
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Hi Jenn,

Can you tell us what your growing conditions are like in FL?
This is my 3rd season with them and I've experimented with different growing conditions every season. So far, I've had the best results this season. I can give you details of how mine spend their days but it wouldn't help much if your outdoor conditions are drastically different from mine. So what are your:

Day time and night time temps in Summer?

Day time and night time temps in Winter?

Also, what kind of light does it get in the Winter? In Summer? Or roughly, how many FC's of light?

Growing outdoors? Indoors?
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  #7  
Unread 09-29-2010, 06:52 PM
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Ok... Well my growin conditions changed at the beginning of July. My new shadehouse went up with about a 30% shade cloth so everyone gets much more sun now. I figured that might have encouraged the first flowering which had about seven or eight flowers. Anyway, it has gotten watered everyday as the mount dries out completely in hot weather. The humidity ranges in summer sitting around 60% approximately. I am in the middle of the state so there is virtually no breeze, but lots of sun and humidity. Rains a lot in summer sometimes daily. Winter the plant was kept drier due to low temps and wind. I thought since it didn't have pseudobulbs it needed somewhat frequent watering. The summer temp ranges fro
80 F to 100 f and sometimes hotter with the heat index. Winter we gomet a few frosts otherwise ranging from 40 to 80. Last year everyone got brought inside on frosty nights. This year I plan to insulate the shadehouse to some degree and move the large vandas into the garage.
This plant is kept shadier than the vanda cross and hasn't changed color so I figured lighting was ok.
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  #8  
Unread 09-29-2010, 10:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JennS View Post
I am in the middle of the state so there is virtually no breeze.........
The summer temp ranges from
80 F to 100 f and sometimes hotter with the heat index.
Ouch. I don't know about other people's neos but all mine really love LOTS of air circulation. On still Summer days, they sulk somewhat, especially if it gets above 85 F and I don't keep them moist on clear sunny days. They love windy days. Some days, it's been so windy that I've had a few dry moss mounds fly out of the plastic pot and I end up running around the backyard chasing after them like tumbleweeds. Neos can take the heat, as long as they are well hydrated. Do they LOVE the heat? I'm not sure. I think, the hotter it is.... the shadier, more humid and more water you'll need. In their native habitat, it can get really hot in the Summer but it's also pretty shady. So here's what I do.

In the winter, they are inside. Every MN winter day above 0 degrees F is a blessed day. I keep them in a room that is 40 to 55 F at night and 50 - 65 during the day. They are at 2 big windows getting unhindered southeast exposure. In the Winter, I remove the window screens (I checked with a light meter and the screens filter out around 1000 - 1500 FC's of light.) I don't add supplemental lighting any more. They get whatever amount of light at the window that particular day has to offer. The room in general, is fairly bright, with several windows and a patio door. Once daylight hours decrease and temps go lower, they start to slow down in growth and eventually stop growing. Once there is no more active growth, I let the moss mounds dry out completely and then give them just enough water to prevent shriveling. I give NO fertilizer in the winter. Just carbon filtered tap water (my city water is very clean). Humidity in the winter can get down to 30%. When new growth emerges in the Spring, I start watering more and fertilizing again. When there is no danger of frost I put them outside on my balcony under some burlap. I can not afford a greenhouse so they have to settle for my ghetto setup.

balcony grow area | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

They get watered when the moss mound is almost completely dry. I fertilize with Biogold every 3 to 4 weeks in the Summer. Every 2 weeks, I water with HB-101 mixed in the water. Once a month, I flush with RO. On days when it's close to 90 F, I keep them wet. I have several that never bloomed in the greenhouse where I bought them, but they've bloomed each year in my conditions.

So probably, increasing air flow and finding a way to get overall lower Winter temps is your best bet. Without a winter rest, they usually do not show a burst in growth in the Spring. They just putz along slowly all year round. This is my 3rd season with them and I think some neo varieties just grow better than others no matter what you do to them.
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  #9  
Unread 09-29-2010, 10:28 PM
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Wow Tracy I love your out door set up....sometimes you just have to work with what you have available! And I had no idea that your winters were so cold! I thought I had it bad in Idaho! (Oh...and I love the pictures of you Dahlia's!)
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  #10  
Unread 09-29-2010, 10:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LinhT View Post
Without a winter rest, they usually do not show a burst in growth in the Spring. They just putz along slowly all year round.
That's why my plants did not do anything this year. Thank for the tip, Tracy.
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