Should you fertilize a rehab Orchid?
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Old 03-24-2021, 12:00 PM
GaitedGurl GaitedGurl is offline
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Should you fertilize a rehab Orchid? Female
Default Should you fertilize a rehab Orchid?

Should you fertilize a rehab orchid. Working currently on phals with no roots. I have KelpMax in my tool box but was wondering why you shouldn't fertilize. Seems like I read no but wondering why?
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Old 03-24-2021, 01:16 PM
tmoney tmoney is offline

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Should you fertilize a rehab Orchid? Male

hey fellow Michigander! former detroit suburbanite here...and gr, and tc for a couple...

anyways, i have also been wondering this. my gut and experience with other plants is the nutes might shock the plant, and best to let them recover. but getting more into this stuff like the kelp max and other nutrients i just canít help but wonder if it might do a little good. ill admit that I have been fertilizing some plants in bud/bloom as sort of a test, even tho a lot of orchid stuff online says to cut back or not fertilize. also, there are the bloom ferts which I have used in the past.

i dunno, my gut just tells me, a. the plants need to get strong or heavy ferts might shock, and b. itíd be a big waste of fertilizer. buuuut, i dunno. we have one in the same situation so ive thought about that a bit lately as well.

edit to add major caveat...before the orchid obsession, for the past 15 years I have pretty much fertilized all my plants, even my bonsai with sugar water, sooooo
minutes a few forays into real stuff ocassionally

Last edited by tmoney; 03-24-2021 at 01:20 PM..
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Old 03-24-2021, 01:20 PM
PaphMadMan PaphMadMan is offline
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Should you fertilize a rehab Orchid? Male

I would make a distinction between a healthy plant (and a Phal with no roots might otherwise be healthy and in pretty good shape) and a weak or sick plant (badly dehydrated, active or just ended infestation or rot problem). The rootless but otherwise sound plant will benefit from a moderate hit of appropriate fertilizer. I'd go for a short soak in a dilute fertilizer solution of your choice.

The weak or sick plant could be further stressed by a hit of nutrients pushing it to grow when it needs time to heal and stabilize first. It has to stop dying before it is ready to grow. Of course, it will also eventually need that fertilizer to recover. Think of yourself when recovering from illness. You may need to just sip water then broth for a while before you're ready for a steak dinner.

So, it's a judgement about the condition of the plant. Stabilize, hydrate, then fertilize.
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