Stem of phal regrowing and accidentally broke

knj2May 17, 2010

I have had my phal orchid for over a year now. I finally got a new spike to form and was looking forward to seeing new blooms. I was trying to place the stem along a wire form that was provided originally to help keep the orchid in form. As I was doing this, the part of the stem with the newly developing buds fell off. There is still about 12 inches of stem left and it appears that there are 2 "nodes" distal to the break. I was just wondering what I should do exactly? Should I leave it be just the way it is? Should I cut back the stem to one of the nodes? or should I completely cut off the entire stem to the base of the leaves? I have read some posts about putting cinnamon on the "open" part of he stem where it broke off. Would this help or hurt it? And do I need to worry about it drying out now if I don't do anything. If someone could please let me know what to do I greatly appreciate it. I'm very upset because I have waited 8 long months for it to bloom again and hope that there is a chance it still might. Thank you!

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In my very limited experience and knowledge, I think I would NOT cut it further down at this point but only make sure the break is a clean cut with a disposable razor. I do not put cinnamon on the open part of the plant when I cut it but just watch it carefully. Maybe someone more familiar with doing this can comment.
I see no reason why your phal should not throw off another spike from this one but it will take some time.
As far as I know, cutting of the entire stem makes the plant spike from "scratch" which is desirable when you want the plant to rest between flowering. Cutting back to the appropriate node give the plant a "head start" to the next essentially, you will wait a bit longer but not 8 months.
Hopefully, two nodes will propagate and you will get twice the blooms :)

    Bookmark   May 17, 2010 at 2:38PM
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orchid126(z6, NJ)

Good advice from eyedee. Make sure the break is a clean cut. Leave the spike intact, but cut back to just above the nearest node, and down the line one of the nodes may sprout another bloom spike. The flowers may be fewer and smaller but at least you'll get flowers. If you cut the spike off, you may have to wait until next year.

Been there, done that!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2010 at 4:33PM
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