Phal. Only Has ONE root!!! HELP!!!
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  #1  
Old 04-28-2010, 01:45 AM
Alycia Alycia is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 6
Phal. Only Has ONE root!!! HELP!!!
Default Phal. Only Has ONE root!!! HELP!!!

Hi All!!!

I got up the courage to ask form help from an orchid forum (orchid geeks) and typed a HUGE explaination and plea for help, only to realize the site had been hacked when I went to submit it... AHH! So I will try and put as much info in this one that I remember... keeping it shorter.

I've had this Phal. for about a year, first orchid ever! However, I knew nothing about them, other than they were pretty, when my husband got it for me.

A month after receiving it the flowers wilted and I cut the spike back past the last flower. The spike turned hollow and brown so I cut it back further (about 1 1/2''). After that I read to check the roots... they weren't doing so hot... seems the store put the Phal in the wrong pot (no air holes). So I trimmed all the dead roots off and it left me with ONE!

After a bunch of no-no's (like putting the orchid in SOIL ) I think I may be on my way down the road to orchid heaven. I finally bought a pot specially designed for orchids... bought new orchid bark (and soaked it!)... purchased orchid food... put cinnamon on cut pieces... I just don't know if it's all in vain.

Someone please help! I love my orchid and I really don't want to lose it. It just needs to grow more roots and leaves!!!

Here is a link to some photos of my Phal.

Pictures by aly8605 - Photobucket

Thank you in advance for your help!
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  #2  
Old 04-28-2010, 02:55 AM
ayumiko ayumiko is offline
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Phal. Only Has ONE root!!! HELP!!! Female
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I have a phal with only one root about the same length as yours. I bought it last year in october like that with only one good root. At first I put it in a plastic aquarium with low level water and covered the top with clear plastic with a few small holes. I left it for 4 months...nothing happened but at least the leaves were still very green and firm. After that I read about water culture and decided to give it a try. The water was fertilized water that I had left. I took the phal out of the water half a month later because the leaves were not as firm anymore (its very bendable) and kinda winkled. This was 1 1/2 week ago. After I took it out from the water, I potted it up in orchid mix in a very small pot with shipping peanuts at the bottom. This morning I discovered a new root growing!
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  #3  
Old 04-28-2010, 03:52 AM
Alycia Alycia is offline
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Phal. Only Has ONE root!!! HELP!!!
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Thanks! I have read about growing new roots in water, and also on pumice, but I've also read to not over water your plant... so it gets a little confusing.

It's amazing how long these plants can live with only one viable root... mine has survived months now. My leaf was wilted kind of like you said yours was but when I allowed air to get to the roots it became firm and a little darker in color. Any thoughts on why that might be?
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  #4  
Old 04-28-2010, 06:19 AM
nibbler nibbler is offline
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Phal. Only Has ONE root!!! HELP!!! Female
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Rooting hormone. Superthrive or KLN is I think recommened in North America. The Orchids I have moved to Semi Hydro are all putting out new roots due to this..... I highly recommend it. You could mount your phal or try semi hydro?
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  #5  
Old 04-28-2010, 08:15 AM
johnblagg johnblagg is offline
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Phal. Only Has ONE root!!! HELP!!! Male
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If it firmed up and got a little darker it is improviong.....most likely because you did let air get to the roots that are left ...air circulation is very important for orchids ....keep up what you have been doing it may turn into a huge beast of a plant in time
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  #6  
Old 04-28-2010, 04:24 PM
RosieC RosieC is offline
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If it has any root left, and if the leaf is healthy seeming then it's quite savable.

I had one with only slightly more root than that left and it's now got 4 strong leaves (all new since it lost it's roots) lots of growing root tips and even (I noticed yesterday) has started spiking for me.

As John has said, air flow is very important for Phals including arround the roots. I found that watering with luke warm water triggered mine in to growing new roots and recovering. It had gone months only just surviving and starting with luke warm water suddenly kicked it in to growth.

It is possible to get new roots using something called 'water culture' but I would not advise it when you have ANY good roots. I tried it with one with no roots, but after seemng to revive it rotted after a couple of months.

If you have good roots and put them in water with no air those roots are likely to rot off as they are not adapted to growing that way. This plant has the ability to absorbe moisture through it's one good root and so I wouldn't risk loosing that by putting it in water.

One last thing, try and pot it up in as small a pot as possible. I put mine in a 2" pot so that the bark dries very quickly. That means I can water it lots because it dries fast and the roots get plenty of air.
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  #7  
Old 04-28-2010, 04:25 PM
RosieC RosieC is offline
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Oh, I know that with that huge leaf it will fall over in a tiny pot, but it's still worth using a tiny pot. I stand the tiny pot inside a large glass vase to stop it toppling.
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  #8  
Old 04-29-2010, 05:25 AM
nibbler nibbler is offline
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Phal. Only Has ONE root!!! HELP!!! Female
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I have used wire - like bonsai wire thats thin and flexible. Wrapped it very losely around the stem and threaded it through the holes at the bottom of the pot and wrapped it around. It keeps it stable and I can always use shears or scissors to snip it when the plant has recovered its roots.
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