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 Post subject: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 3:33 pm 
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Hello,
Hope you are all doing well with this weather! I have a question, and hope this is the place to ask. Over the weekend we had the Orchid Mania! Show and I purchased a Phal. Schilleriana with an inflorescence with 6 buds on it. This plant is from Taiwan, and I learned that plants from Taiwan have to be packed in moss in order to be brought into the country.

My growing area works better with bark. I am thinking about cutting the inflorescence and just transplanting the plant into bark right away. Does anyone have any thoughts on this?

Any advise is appreciated! Take care!
Cheryl


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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2019 4:42 pm 
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This is just one person's opinion: it depends on the size of the pot. If it is under 4", I would leave it alone, grow it normally and enjoy your flowers. If it is in a 4" pot or larger, I would just water it sparingly and still wait to see the flowers, then repot. Good luck with it!

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 Post subject: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2019 6:34 am 
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I'll add another opinion in the same vein:

If you have a budded inflorescence, why waste it just to repot?

I suspect that the problem you (and many growers) have with compressed sphagnum is its ability to become saturated and suffocate roots, so using a more "open" medium is preferred.

Yes, you're going to want to repot it, but until the plant is done blooming and new roots are just emerging from the base of the plant (the ideal time to repot), why not just be very sparing of the watering so you don't saturate it and enjoy the flowers?

My favorite technique for that is to stand the pot in a very shallow tray, and just put enough water in the tray so that it's all soaked up in about 10-15 minutes. The wicking process spreads the water within the fiber strands, rather that between them, which is what blocks the air flow and gas exchange, leading to suffocation.

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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2019 10:38 am 
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I like to remind growers that they are the one in control of watering. Maybe it’s best to use 1/2 cup water initially for a few weeks to water a plant potted in moss. Wait for signs of new growth. Allow plants to become adjusted to new growing environment. Repotting is best done in warmer months and when plants are actively growing.

Expecting plant to be in shock when switching from moss to bark. If you repot during growing season. You can minimize this setback.

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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2019 1:45 pm 
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Location: Los Alamitos, CA
Thank you all for your valuable input! You are all correct!

I re-examined the pot/plant this morning and found the problem. The moss is packed really, really tightly, so no air can circulate around the roots; some of the roots have black mold (?) and the final growing (end) bud is dried out on the inflorescence. Conclusion: The roots are already suffocating.

For the time being, I just pushed the whole root/moss ball up a bit so that air can go up into the root/moss ball from the bottom as well as the top. Most likely I will end up cutting the inflorescence, dousing the roots with 3% hydrogen perioxide, and just repotting tonight. Or may just blow drying the moss. Just kidding!

Lesson learned: when buying plants from Taiwan in moss, look at how tighly moss is packed, and then pick a non-flowering plant so you can transplant without having to make the agonizing decision of whether or not to cut the inflorescence!

have a great day! Be safe!


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 Post subject: New Questions
PostPosted: Tue Mar 12, 2019 5:20 pm 
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Location: Los Alamitos, CA
Hello Everyone,
Hope you are doing well! It is finally sunny again, and things are somehow better! LOL
I have three questions:

1. I bought a vanda keiki with green roots. Green from algee. Some of the algee has become moss. Will the moss suffocate the vanda roots? Should I keep the algee, or not?

2. Miltonopsis - for Valentine's Day my hubby gave me a pansy orchid. So pretty, but I didn't water it very much. Now I have to try to save it. YouTube videos recommend bark for growing medium, lots of humidity and cool temps? But Brad's Greenhouse had an amazing looking Miltoniopsis growing in his greenhouse, which I think is warm. His was in bark too.

3. Do you have any favorite phals that are particularly suited for mounting?


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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2019 5:19 am 
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Just about any Phalaenopsis is suitable for mounting. Question is do you have the right condition to grow plants on mount? Frequent watering and high humidity requirement.


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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2019 3:14 pm 
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HI Peter,
Thank you for your response. I am still in the process of choosing which phal to mount. But that made me think of another question. What do you do with a phal that has lots of roots?
Of my regular sized phals, the one with the least number of leaves has the biggest root ball. Last year I repoted it into a bigger pot (6") and now it has just started blooming. By the time the media wears out, the roots are going to be even more dense.

I think that phal has been overpotted. What does one do with an overpotted orchid?


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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Fri Mar 22, 2019 11:20 am 
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Hi Donna, what I do with excessive roots is to trim them back. The end result is roots are no longer than 8-10 inches each. New roots will grow. I get asked this question often so maybe I will try to find an YouTube video or take photos of my next big plant repot to show before and after photos

Plants that are over potted can be repotted into correct pot size. Otherwise there is the risk of media staying wet too long and cause root rots.

Best time to repot is during warmer season when plants are actively growing.


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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:10 pm 
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Thank you, Peter!


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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 4:57 pm 
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HI Peter,

How are you? Your advice on mounting phals has worked out very well! 3 out of 4 are doing well mounted. #4 was in moss, and we went on vacation and the moss dried out. The plant was completely droopy, and I didn't want to wet the entire moss because I was afraid it would be too wet, so I panicked and mounted the phal. What is the better solution for this kind of scenario?

Next question, my blooming phal (regular big leaf type) needs to be repotted. Can it be repotted while blooming (without cutting the blooms) if it is returned to the same environment after being repotted? I am hoping a repot is not so traumatic if the plant is returning to the same growing spot.

My overpotted phal (also a regular big leaf type) has a lovely bloom and now it is throwing off one of its three leaves. The losing of the leaf may be normal, or it may be stressed. I am going to watch and see, but may need to repot that one too.

On a brighter note, I found a bud forming on a novelty phal hybrid! Hopefully I will be sending a picutre of that bloom next month! So exciting! Take care!

Cheryl


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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Thu May 02, 2019 7:40 am 
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Hi Donna,

Personally I would not repot a plant in stress. The plant in moss when it became too dry, it's better to increase humidity (placing it in a humid enclosure - like a small aquarium with 2 inch gravels and 1 inch water so bottom of the pot does not sit in water.

Since you went ahead to mount the plant, you can only hope that the plant will work out the shock of being mounted and in time will grow. It's a chance you take.

As for as your concern to not wanting to soak the moss, you could sit the pot in a saucer and fill it with half a cup of water. This way you control that only a small amount of water is absorbed by moss, instead of running water through moss and allow it to soak up 4-5 times of its body weight. Less amount of water you put into moss would mean that moss will dry out quicker.

Any time you repot a plant is traumatic to the plant. You can minimize this by choosing the right time to repot. For example, repot only when plant is growing in the warmer month. If you must repot a plant while it is flowering, be prepared that the flowers will not last - and you can set back plant several weeks to months. It is a chance you take.

Hope this helps.

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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2019 12:39 pm 
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HI Peter,
Norman Fang of Norman's Orchids in Montclair, CA spoke to our OS about colors and new developments in novelty phals. He is originally from Taiwan and said with deforestation they are finding new species of orchids which is good for the orchid gene pool, and they can germinate stronger growing breeds using Phal. equistris or phal gigantia. He even showed a six petal phal and a navy blue one with yellow tips!

He also said moss is more resistant to fungus and disease, and that he does not use pesticides. Water usage is always a factor here in CA. And you have mentioned twice that with moss you can control the water, so I am embracing moss, in theory anyway.

We are having a Phalaenopsis Alliance event June 20, 2019 at the Huntington Library where the new research will be presented.


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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2019 2:32 pm 
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CDiDonna wrote:
HI Peter,
Norman Fang of Norman's Orchids in Montclair, CA spoke to our OS about colors and new developments in novelty phals. He is originally from Taiwan and said with deforestation they are finding new species of orchids which is good for the orchid gene pool....
Ignoring , of course that deforestation eliminates natural habitats...

A big "thumbs down" from me.

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 Post subject: Re: Phal. Question
PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2019 2:50 pm 
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Deforestation not only eliminates natural habitats, but also eliminates oxygenation power centers and species! I think we can all agree that deforestation is a very bad practice. Another presenter went to Ecuador and they found orchids that had been removed from harvested trees. The presenter said that if their group were to take the plants and try to replant them, they could be sited for illegal poaching. They left the plants to die rather than risk arrest.

What I thought was interesting from Norm's discussion was that in Taiwan, even though there is deforestation, there are people trying to collect the plants from trees in order to save the species for future generations. I found that gave me hope.


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