No roots at all

boothbay(7)April 4, 2011

About 6 weeks ago i bought this Phal that was in full bloom. I did notice that the roots on top and overcrowded, were bad looking. I wanted to repot it and was told that i should not do it until Spring time, here in the East, and not before all the blooms have gone. So I waited, and the last bloom fell off this past weekend, and i immediately took the plant out of its pot and discovered that once i removed all the dead roots, there were none that i could see....no roots at all. Regardless, i potted it with new orchid soil. Now there is a waiting game to see if I would be lucky enough to produce more roots. The confusing part is that with all those dead roots, the plant with its blooms looked so healthy, and they did last a long time, under those conditions. Now, I am noticing that two bottom leafs of my Phal -Dend is yellowing. It has two remaining white blooms. Is this due to lack of Fertilizing on my part? Again, I was told not to Fertilize when an orchid is in bloom.

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richardol(Santa Royale CA)

Since Phals are a house plant, I re-pot when necessary any time. The leaves are yellowing because they are dying. Cut off the stem now, it needs the energy to grow.

The plant was over-watered. The fertilizer level had nothing to do with the situation.

Now, just wait. Watch for bugs, the plant is weak and is easily attacked.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2011 at 8:45AM
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boothbay(7)

Another forum said that I should not water the first 10 days of a repotted Phal so it can start growing roots. I thought it needs water in order to start growing roots. How does a plant grow roots in a dry state? I never heard of that. Problems seem that every forum has different suggestions and no wonder some of us are either killing our plants because of this confusion.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2011 at 7:27PM
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arthurm(Sydney, NSW AUST)

Growing new roots is one of the great problems of orchid growing, some Genera will grow new roots without any problem at all, other Genera will only grow new roots at certain stages of their annual growth cycle.

"Every forum has different suggestions", well, seeing that you do not even have the state where you live in the USA on your my page details, how can you expect solid information?

My very small collection of Phals grew new roots when i put them outside in a glass-house for summer. Maybe you have to do something similar to "tell" the plant that conditions have improved.

Finally, in my opinion Phals are not the easiest orchids to grow. Easy orchids are the ones that grow best for most growers without much fiddling with conditions. To have a large collection of Phals here they have to be housed in a glass-house all year with temperatures, humidity and shading just set for them.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2011 at 7:55PM
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robin16795(6)

It is true that each type of orchid needs different set of growing conditions but to answer your question... The reason you do not water for 7 to 10 days after re-potting is to allow the damaged roots to begin to heal before they are exposed to a dose of root diseases. I have been drenching plants with a mix containing Physan 20. It has increased my success tremendously.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2011 at 11:01PM
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smwboxer

Well, if your phal. has no roots at all, I'd suggest throwing in the trash and going to Home Depot for new one. Why bother nursing some NOID phal. back to health when you can just start over?

    Bookmark   April 7, 2011 at 12:46PM
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LynneNY(z6)

I had to chuckle at the last post here! I bought 2 orchids in 3 inch pots at HD recently and repotted them yesterday. As the OP posted, the roots were all dead. They had been crammed into this tiny pot in sphagnum moss and were soaking wet, and stuck to the sides! One pot actually had 3 plants in it - I was only able to salvage 2, but I don't think they are going to make it without any roots at all. That pot also started out with 2 spikes with numerous flowers and buds, but both spikes turned yellow and died last week.

I potted them up in bark and will see what happens. At least one can return plants to HD, no questions asked, within a year - I will certainly take advantage of that if these do not make it. It would be a shame, as they were differently colored harlequin orchids - I haven't seen those for sale anywhere else around here.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2011 at 6:00PM
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boothbay(7)

Well my �no roots left� Phals spike is still healthy looking and the remaining flower is still in full bloom. This was purchased at Loewes, not HD. Next time maybe i should pull out the plant to see that i don�t get suckered again. Its not right for them to sell them that way. If i return it, why wouldnt they say that i killed it_ Anyway I threw away the receipt...$16 bucks for a couple of weeks or so of enjoyment. But I will not give up hope in reviving it.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2011 at 8:02PM
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LynneNY(z6)

OH boothbay so sorry you threw out the receipt - just last night I saw a commercial for Lowes that said they also take back plants within a year.

One of mine from HD is still in bloom also, without any roots because they were all rotten. NOt sure if the remaining 2 buds will fully open or not.

I just returned a very dead juniper bush to HD - not a single question was asked and my money was returned immediately. I have no qualms about returning plants there - they throw out less than perfect plants all the time - the vendors will credit them, but won't allow them to clearance them out, nor give them away, so in the trash they go - what a waste!!!

    Bookmark   April 13, 2011 at 12:57PM
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oakland753

I just moved to Chicago from Florida and found that the Home Depots in Chicagoland do NOT take back Orchids, though they do accept most other plants for refund within the year. They told me this is because they cannot return the Orchids to their supplier. I was surprised the policy is not corporation wide with Home Depot.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2012 at 11:17PM
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ginnibug

I hope I can clear the confusion. The other forum might have given you the info not to water for 10 days because that helps any "wounds" on roots seal themselves. If you have a root that has a root rot on the tip, you can trim that tip,treat it with cinnamon or your choice of whatever, let it seal by not watering it for a couple of days, then resume a regular watering schedule.Whenever I repot an orchid, I let it sit for a couple of days before watering again; I don't let it sit for 10 days, but that is that person's opinion. I also pot up lots of stuff in spagh, which a lot of people won't even touch. But the benefits, from my point of view, outweigh any drawbacks.gb

    Bookmark   September 14, 2012 at 9:15PM
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jane__ny(9-10)

"I thought it needs water in order to start growing roots. How does a plant grow roots in a dry state?"

Answer - What good does watering do when a plant has no roots? Without roots, the plant sits in water and continues to rot. Letting a plant dry out, forces the plant to make roots to 'find water.'

Please, think about this logically. Why would you water a rootless plant?

Jane

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 12:31AM
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