spike grow sideway

tanie51(3b)November 30, 2013

Hello orchid friends.

My first ever phal spike is growing side way and in my thinking, there's no way it will grow upward because it is under an umbrella of leaves. The spike is in the base of the plant and look like it grows wrapping around the base of the plant, so, how can it grow up. Anyone with knowledge an experienced can help me to straighten this spike out?

Thank you,

Tanie

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arthurm(Sydney, NSW AUST)

It takes about 110 days from when the spike first appears to the first bloom opening, so you have a bit of a wait.

You can gradually train the stem upwards or in the direction you want once the flowering stem lengthens some more.

You need some stakes, strong wire and little clips to achieve a good result (It is called grooming) or you can use whatever is available but it is a gradual process if you want to avoid snapping the spike especially when it is young.

Look at the pics in the orchid wont stop blooming thread, they may help.....

    Bookmark   November 30, 2013 at 12:31PM
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tanie51(3b)

Thank you Arthum, it's good to know it does take that long for a spike to bloom. Now I can wait in peace. just to let you know too that the plant is growing outward instead of upward also. Could I gently lift the whole plant up and secure it with a stake? I broke one of either a root or a small spike on the other phal couple of months ago while I was repotting it and now scared. But if I can give it (if it needs to) a straightening up I'd like to try. It's my first baby and I want to do right for it!
Thank you, Tanie

    Bookmark   November 30, 2013 at 1:29PM
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tolumniamatt

Most likely the reason that the plant and spike are growing horizontally is because your light source is from the side. Change the light source so it is from above as much as possible.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2013 at 2:08PM
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tanie51(3b)

Thank you tolumniamatt. That might be a tough call for me because it is winter in Canada now, the sun is so low. And it makes sense that the plant is growing toward the light. I noticed that the sun comes through about the same level of the plantno higher as in summer. Unless I will have to install some artificial light on the ceiling but otherwise, that is it. Could I turn the plant the other way?

thanks,

Tanie

    Bookmark   November 30, 2013 at 3:43PM
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ashes_of_the_fire(6B)

Yes! Turn the plant! It's the simplest and easiest way to do what you need to do! I use the method to get straighter flower spikes, once you see buds you should stop turning, as long as it's all spike with no actual flowers shouting you should be ok. I haven't had any buds drop using this method. I use it to control the new growths on my plants as well, especially because most seem to put out new increases in early spring before I can put them out. And keeping the pot facing a certain way can help control the direction of new growth in the pot (new buds form on the side that gets the most light usually).

    Bookmark   December 1, 2013 at 9:43AM
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tanie51(3b)

Thank you Ashes-of-the- Fire. I will do that.

Tanie

    Bookmark   December 1, 2013 at 1:55PM
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jane__ny(9-10)

I used a floor lamp (inexpensive) with CFL's to grow spikes over the winter. The spikes will head for the light. You can use the lamp in your living room or anywhere.

Notice the Phals in the photo. You can see the spikes growing toward the light bulb. I used a floor, octopus lamp which I bought in Target for about $20.00

I used them to finish different orchids which were getting ready to spike or needed more grow light. The orchids in the photo got very little natural light. The floor lamps did the trick.

Jane

    Bookmark   December 1, 2013 at 9:25PM
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jane__ny(9-10)

I would also add that I do not turn any orchids in spike. You will mess up the placement of buds. Maybe some people can do that, but I never could.

I was always a bit OCD about placement of the buds and would mark the front of the pot so not to change its position toward the light.

Jane

    Bookmark   December 1, 2013 at 9:27PM
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dannie317

I do the same as Jane: I make sure the pot always sits exactly the same way, so all of my flowers face the same direction.

I haven't needed to use additional light, but in my experience, spikes rarely grow straight up. Mine tend to grow sticking out, and I train them onto a stake when they get long enough. This is purely my own preference, though. My coworker has orchids that grow amazing spikes full of blooms, and she lets them grow willy-nilly. I just like them to look neater ... I'm an admitted control freak! I think her flowers are GORGEOUS, but it makes me twitch a little to see the crazy directions her spikes go.

    Bookmark   December 2, 2013 at 2:07PM
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tanie51(3b)

Thank you all. I was going to have an electrician come and install a ceiling light with fan right in the middle of my living room but it's close to Christmas and those guys are so busy and might not have it done until some time in Jan. or Feb. In the mean time. I will get that octopus light.

Tanie

    Bookmark   December 2, 2013 at 6:05PM
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westoh Z6

A ceiling light won't help much, IMO. Artificial light usually has to be within @12 inches to be effective (LEDs are the exception). Keep it where it's at and train it with a stake as mentioned above would be my advice.

Good luck,

Bob

    Bookmark   December 3, 2013 at 6:59AM
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tanie51(3b)

Would you Jane and Westoh tell me what is CFL' and IMO and where can I find them? I was going to the store today to get the octopus lamp. I saw it in Home Depot and it's not $20 like your's Jane. It's $80. but I am willing to pay that for my orchids. But don't understand what is CFL and IMO. We are having a terrrible snow storm from yesterday and today. I am hesitant to get out of the house because I'm afraid to get stuck in the snow pile! But if know what bulbs to get, I'll be brave to get out there.

Thank you,

Tan

    Bookmark   December 3, 2013 at 1:16PM
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westoh Z6

A CFL is a compact fluorescent bulb, generally the spiral shaped ones that save energy. LEDs are the very bright and very expensive low wattage bulbs that are becoming more available over the last several years.

My thoughts are: If the phal is sending out a spike now, the light must be OK. Not sure you need an additional light source (never hurts though), just needing to get the spike to grow in a more upright position. Thus the stake and the clips or wire. Be very careful as the new spikes are tender and can snap easily when being manipulated.

Good luck and stay in until at least the plows come by :-)

Bob

    Bookmark   December 3, 2013 at 1:57PM
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tanie51(3b)

I was too anxious to go out and when I got out of the door, OMG! I thought I was in the wilderness! Yesterday I got stuck half car in my driveway and half car on the street. Some young people came to rescue me and managed to put it in on the driveway. Now, I managed to move my car out of my driveway and thought I might go to the store to look for light and all that. Well, within 2 blocks from my house, my car got stuck in the snow for 3 times. 3 times people came to rescue me and pushed me to my driveway. Only half way. I have about 3 feet deep and about 15 meters long of snow in front of my garage door! That's it, not going anywhere until spring!!

    Bookmark   December 3, 2013 at 4:02PM
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tanie51(3b)

Hi Jane and Bob,

I just got an octopus lamp and was looking for the advise you gave me about the light on another post (Phal's spike may be?). I am glad I found you here. Now I have another question. How long do I need to leave the light on per day? And when the flowers are open, do I need to keep them under the light or should I move it to somewhere else? Thank you!

Tanie,

    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 9:32PM
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jane__ny(9-10)

Did you get CFL bulbs? Also, how much natural light do you get and how much do the plants get.

I used the octopus lamps in two different ways. My cooler orchids, Catts, Dends, Oncids were all in spike when I brought them in for winter. I supplemented the short day length with the lamps. I had the lamps on timers to turn on at about 4pm and to shut off at midnight. I tried to give them at least 18hrs of total light.

I put my warm growers in a room with little natural light. There I used octopus lamps and clamp lights. The Phals were in spike when I brought them in and I used the lamps to finish the spikes. I kept the tip of the spike about 6-8 inches from the bulbs. I continued to move them back as they lengthened. I also used the lights to shape the spikes. I wanted the spikes to cascade and would move the plants a bit higher and higher as the spikes grew. (you can ignore that part, I'm a bit OCD about flower spikes!)

Depending on where you place your plants, you want at least 18hrs of light. If you have sunlight, turn the lamps on in the evening. Put them on timers. Home Depot sells clamp fixtures which you can clamp onto a shelf or even on the octopus lamps for additional light. Just don't burn the spike. You need to check them every few days to pull them back as they grow.

Hope that helps,

Jane

A Twinkle under a CFL desk lamp

Almost got divorced over this setup in our living room. But it worked!

I would bring many of my flowering plants into our office to display which is why I was fussy about how the flowers presented. I liked using Phals for the office because they lasted the longest.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 11:03PM
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jane__ny(9-10)

For some reason, this photo didn't post.
Removed
Jane

This post was edited by jane__ny on Thu, Dec 12, 13 at 14:06

    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 11:11PM
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westoh Z6

Tanie,

I run my lights @ 15-16 hours per day. In the early fall I switch to 12 hours for @3-4 weeks to help induce spikes on some of my plants. (I have some that stay indoors year round, but most summer outside starting in May and come back in in the October time frame, which naturally gave them the change in day length) As far as flowers, in my set-up I have areas to accommodate 2'-3' flower spikes, anything longer and I have to move them to non artificial light locations (LR windows, dining room table, work windows which are NW facing and huge!, etc...).

I'm not quite as concerned about shaping the spikes as Jane :-), I usually just stake them (to protect and train) and let them do there own thing.

Good luck,

Bob

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 7:06AM
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allymarie(zone 10, So. Fl.)

Oh my, what a gorgeous phal Jane.Beautiful!

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 11:13AM
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allymarie(zone 10, So. Fl.)

Hi,

The other night I placed two of my phals on my stovetop so they can get the
light from the overhead range hood.I usually leave the range hood light on at nights.I have one of the curly energy efficient light bulbs in place.Is this the CFL light bulb you are talking about?I think I'm going to get myself one of those lamps.I was wondering about providing artificial light for my orchids but when I checked out Amazon they were costly.Thanks for this info.

Allymarie

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 11:29AM
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jane__ny(9-10)

CFL bulbs are sold everywhere and are cheap. I used the largest 'equivalent' to 100w.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 2:03PM
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allymarie(zone 10, So. Fl.)

I have those bulbs.Thanks Jane!

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 2:11PM
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tanie51(3b)

Thank you Jane and Bob, you are very helpful! Yes, I did get the CFL bulbs but only 60W. Should I have them higher like yours? I left my light on today before I went to work in the morning and turned it off when I got back home. About 7 hours. At the moment, I have a small table which can hold about 8 orchid plants. 1 Burr Nelly in full bloom I bought it last month. 2 miltoniopsis, 3 Odontocidiums. I have 3 phals all together which are not in bloom. one phal which is spiking since last month, 1 finished flowers since August and I just rescued one phal from work place last couple of days ago. Now I have to find out which orchids will benefit the light. Would you please help me out. I think it was you Bob said that the "poor thing" regarding about my Dendro I put it in my bathroom which east facing and got about 1/2 hr. of direct sun light. But I was wrong, I noticed that the sun shines on the plant is about 3 hours. (that makes you happy, and me too!). so, there's a mixed of all different kind of orchids. I think this month and at leas for another 2 months, my living room will not get much sun. It is bright but no sun, does that count? Thank you very much for all your help. Tanie

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 7:23PM
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tanie51(3b)

I also wanted to say the your orchids are very beautiful Jane.

I probably will ask around my friends who go to States during Christmas holiday to go to Target the get me a couple of octopus lamps for me. I could find nice octopus lamps like yours where I live.

Tanie

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 7:28PM
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jane__ny(9-10)

Tanie, you could use clamp lights. They are simple metal fixture which clamps onto a shelf or stand. I used those too. You don't need the floor lamps. Use any type of fixture you can buy. If you can get the light bulbs, any fixture would work. I used a desk lamp to finish the Twinkle and also used it to bloom out a Masde.

There are better light bulbs but they are expensive. The CFL's work well enough if you have natural light. I only used them to supplement sunlight during the winter months.

I have an octopus lamp still in the box which I dragged along to Florida. Heaven knows why but I have it, never used it and would be happy to give it to you but I think the shipping would be high. The box is heavy.

If you are interested, email me and let me know.

Jane

Clamp light

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 10:31PM
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tanie51(3b)

Jane,

That would be awesome! Could you please find out how much it cost to ship it to me? I think if you pay over there and send it to me is lots cheaper than I'll pay over here. If you don't mind find out how much it is, let me know and I will send you a Money Order. Once you get the Money Order then you send it to me. Let's see how much the cost of shipping first. I called my friend who sometimes goes to Kalispel in Montana asking her when she'll be going there but her husband just got hip replacement and will not going any where soon. I found out we do have Target here, not in my city but in Calgary, I looked but there's nothing like yours. Here's my email add: tan.deregt@gmail.com
Thank you Jane,

Tanie

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 12:49AM
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westoh Z6

Tanie,

Do you have 'farm' stores? If so, look for 'chicken brooder' light fixtures. Basically the same thing as what Jane has shown.

Bob

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 7:21AM
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tanie51(3b)

HI Bob, I don't think we have farm store here but I'll ask my friends. I am not even familiar with farm stuff.
Thank you Bob.

Tanie

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 9:17AM
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jane__ny(9-10)

Tanie, you could order from Target and have it delivered. Maybe they even offer free shipping or you can find a coupon on line and get the lamp for less.

Here is a link that might be useful: Lights

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 10:38AM
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