Cattleya "knees" : Should I be worried?
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  #1  
Old 03-23-2021, 05:24 PM
vfplm vfplm is offline
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Cattleya &quot;knees&quot; : Should I be worried?
Default Cattleya "knees" : Should I be worried?

Hi,😊

My name is Patty and I am new to the OrchidBoard but not totally new to orchids. I have grown Phalaenopsis orchids for years (not always successful) but recently decided to try my hand at Cattleyas. So...I ordered several cattleyas. All needed to be repotted because they had reached the other side of the pot and had roots coming out of the pot. They also had emerging new growth.

One in particular had a very healthy root system but the majority of the roots had grown over the pot and conformed to the shape of the pot edge, sort of like knees. I soaked it for a long time but the roots would not straighten-out and the knees remained. I decided to go ahead and repot it and let the roots do as they pleased. Per the attached photos, the knees are sticking out of the medium. I thought about forcing them into the medium and placing a weight on them to try make them grown downward. But a little voice tells me this would not be a good idea. Even though the orchid has a healthy root system many of them are affected. What should I do?

Thanks for any and all advice. I look forward to learning and growing along with my orchids.

Patty
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Cattleya &quot;knees&quot; : Should I be worried?-orchid-knees1-jpg   Cattleya &quot;knees&quot; : Should I be worried?-orchid-knees-jpg  

Last edited by vfplm; 03-23-2021 at 05:35 PM..
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  #2  
Old 03-23-2021, 06:26 PM
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Cattleya &quot;knees&quot; : Should I be worried? Male
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Firstly, welcome to orchid board!
If the roots are healthy, there isnt any problem with the roots forming "knees" other than perhaps aesthetic problems. I'm sure one of our more experienced cattleya growers will be along momentarily to offer further info, but i know of some that don't bother removing the older pot and will just drop the whole plant with the old pot or basket into a new one. The roots will do their own thing as long as you water them correctly
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Old 03-23-2021, 06:29 PM
Orchidtinkerer Orchidtinkerer is offline
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Cattleya &quot;knees&quot; : Should I be worried?
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Hi patty,
glad you decided to give Cattleya a try. I'm sure you'll do fine with them.
The roots look fine to me. I wouldn't change a thing, some of mine sit out of their pots even further, it provides the roots a bit more aeration so as long as they don't dry out they can be exposed even more without worry. But at any sign of wrinkly leaves they will be getting too dry.
Roots don't all need to be wet all the time, most of my roots are dry all the time and I keep roughly half of them moist.
Their job is to transport water so as long as part of the roots have access to water lots can grow out of the pot.

In a couple of years on the next repot you soak the roots well so they can be bent and squeeze them into a bigger pot but till then as long as your substrate doesn't degrade your orchid will do fine.
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Old 03-23-2021, 06:50 PM
vfplm vfplm is offline
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Cattleya &quot;knees&quot; : Should I be worried?
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Thanks to you both, Orchidtinkerer & 3rdMaestro. You've both put my mind at ease. I look forward to getting to know everyone here as I have no doubt I will need to call on you often.
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Old 03-23-2021, 07:11 PM
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Cattleya &quot;knees&quot; : Should I be worried? Female
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First, Welcome!
That looks like a very healthy plant. Cattleya roots go wherever they want... The healthier they are, it seems, the wilder they can be. So just let them do what they want. The plent should be fine in the current pot for 2 or 3 years. When it starts to climb out of the pot again, do wait until you see just the beginning of new roots - that's the ideal time to repot to minimize potential damage to new root tips,and to give the new roots a chance to adapt to their new environment.
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Old 03-23-2021, 07:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vfplm View Post
I decided to go ahead and repot it and let the roots do as they pleased.
That's the way to do it. Just allow the roots to grow 'naturally'.

Also - for quick checks ...... just use google and search for 'cattleya roots' ----- looking in the 'image' section of google. It will show various roots of cattleya. And if you see many pics of healthy cattleya with roots that are similar to your cattleya roots ------ then it generally means everything is ok and normal.
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Old 03-24-2021, 12:56 AM
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Cattleya &quot;knees&quot; : Should I be worried? Male
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Welcome to the Orchid Board!

A lot of people pot up Catts simply by dropping the old pot intact into a larger pot, and filling the gap with medium. Older roots take up less water than do new roots, and new roots form almost only from the growing point. The old medium around the old roots isn't a significant problem.
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Old 03-24-2021, 04:51 AM
Orchidtinkerer Orchidtinkerer is offline
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while checking on my plants I noticed a newcomer is doing well but is also becoming a slight problem lol.
It was only just repotted 6 months ago but I couldn't repot it properly with the oldest bulbs against the side of the pot like I should have as if you look closely you will notice one of the bulbs is growing like a "knee" over the edge of the pot It was actually growing inside of the last pot.
I had to pot it like this when I got it and the new roots are going all over the place now
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Old 03-24-2021, 11:53 AM
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That one would also qualify for the Root Porn thread! The plant clearly finds the pot irrelevant.
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Old 03-24-2021, 01:10 PM
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OT, I have two doing the same thing. Waited too long to repot. Now I just keep looking at them and going "now what?" And meanwhile they continue to crawl, and all I do is stare at them. Which hasn't made the situation any better.
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