Phalaenopsis and crown rot
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Phalaenopsis and crown rot
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Old 08-11-2008, 01:55 AM
unhappykat unhappykat is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Zone: 9a
Location: Stockton, California, US.
Age: 31
Posts: 476
Default Phalaenopsis and crown rot

Hello everyone,

I have been speaking with quite a few people about crown rot in Phalaenopsis and related genre and thought I might benefit a few with a different approach to their culture in pots. I have seen many photos of Phalaenopsis in the wild where they grow horizontially, and sometimes completely upside down, off various trees and bushes, I have also seen many examples of beautifully mounted specimens with wonderful leaves and roots, just as nature intended. This problem most often associated with Phalaenopsis is that their large leaves often collect large amounts of water that just sits and eventually invites bacterial and fungal infection to set in often causing the demise of the plant, often occuring in potted plants, with a mounted plant this water simply runs away from the crown leaving little chance for an infection to set in, so why doesnt everyone mount? Well there are many reasons for not mounting but there are two that I often hear, the first is 'I can;t remember to water everyday.' and the other 'I dont have the room to put up all the mounts, especially large ones.'. For the last year I have been experimenting with several ways of growing Phals from mounts, hanging baskets, various pots, medias, and even no media. Form this year I have killed many many plants but found a way that may not be the best for everyone but may be looked at as an idea for those species and hybrids that are sensitive to crown rot. To address the problem of watering a mounted plant daily I have taken 4" clear plastic slitted pots with a Phalaenopsis planted in either Sphagnum moss or a prefered media with a moss covering that was wired in place to prevent spillage and hung them with a piece of rigid wire to where they are horizontal. With this arrangement you can enjoy the benefit of a mounted plant, water runs off leaves, with the benefit of a pot, you only need to water once a week or less as long as the moss covering the media is misted or watered occasionally. This method almost completely prevents infections due to water sitting in the leaves. Also for the second problem of space, these plants are very efficient with space as they can either be hung from a low point in a green house, where nothing usually grows, or they can simply be tilted to lay over the edge of a bench where space would usually be a problem, the pots are only 4" so you can hang multiple plants from a much smaller area than would be necessary for a single mounted slab of cork or fern. Here are some pics of one of my plants with the moss covering and new roots emerging through it.

Again this might not be suitable for all of us but if you are constantly being pestered by plants suffering from crown rot you may want to experiment. This also has the added benefit of allowin spikes to be better displayed by a plant when it finally decides to bloom, they arch much more and apear to weep. Hope this is helpful to someone.
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mounted, phalaenopsis, plant, plants, water, rot, crown

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