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Old 02-05-2007, 10:43 PM
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can phal survive with just roots?

Ok, maybe this is just a dumb question and I can't let go, but I have a phal that's been really good for a few years. Then it succumbed to mite problems and then crown rot. There were a few good roots left. Is there any way this phal could be saved, if there are only roots left?
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Old 02-05-2007, 11:07 PM
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not looking good for you is it?
Once a plant has crown rot, its only alternative is to grow a keiki. Without leaves that isn't looking good. My advice is to chuck it. If by miracle a keiki does grow before rot takes it, it will be a couple years before it will bloom.
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Old 02-05-2007, 11:47 PM
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my question is the other way around: can a phal survive without any roots? I tried increasing humidity but it didn't work. Now the 2 remaining tiny-mini leaves are terribly wrinkled. Do I have no more hope?? Thanks in advance

sw
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Old 02-06-2007, 12:08 AM
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sounds like your two remaining leaves are dead or good as dead. You can try to bag it, however if the leaves are dead, you won't have much luck reviving a phal with no roots and no leaves. Correction: you have no chance.
chuck it.
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Old 02-06-2007, 01:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wisechild9 View Post
There were a few good roots left. Is there any way this phal could be saved, if there are only roots left?
Its tough, but yes. Phals are able to photosynthesis through thier roots. So, mounted ones can survive. If the roots are in a pot away from the light, then its difficult for them to photosynthesis.

The roots do hold some energy that the plant can use to make a new growth or kieki. Be patient, and don`t let it stay to wet.

Without roots is the same deal. It can use energy produced in the leaves to make roots. But if humidity is super low, then its difficult for the leaves to live.

Either way, its probably better for you to buy a new plant. Unless this one is really special.
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Old 02-06-2007, 03:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by new_keiki View Post
my question is the other way around: can a phal survive without any roots? I tried increasing humidity but it didn't work. Now the 2 remaining tiny-mini leaves are terribly wrinkled. Do I have no more hope?? Thanks in advance

sw
The Sphag and Bag method may work. Try Ray Barkalow's method http://www.firstrays.com/sphagnbag.htm
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Old 02-06-2007, 04:39 PM
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I'd like to hear from someone who has actually had a phal come back from nothing but roots. How long did it take to send up a basal keiki? Anyone??????? I have had a plant send up a basal keiki from a struggling plant that had but two small floppy leaves, which eventually whithered once the keiki had 2-3 small leaves. The resulting "plant" now looks like a keiki that would have been removed from a flower spike (size-wise). It is going to be about two years to hopefully get this plant to blooming size......
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Old 02-07-2007, 07:09 PM
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Mayres, I had a phal like that. It had a pretty incredible root system, but succumbed to crown rot. I think it was only about 3 months before I saw a keiki. It's still struggling, though.
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Old 02-07-2007, 08:20 PM
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well, i got one of the leaves-but-no-root (yes, it had one root, and then lost it; s/h was too wet i guess); i did the spag and bag and dipped it in a KLN solution last night so---we'll see.

i still look on things like this as a learning experience.
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Old 02-07-2007, 08:27 PM
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Hmmm. 3 months of looking at a pot with nothing above the media. Hmmm. I have a plant like this right now. Hmmm. I wonder if I will have the patience to "play this out" to the bitter end? Of course you wonder if "the end" has not already come and gone? I have about 25-30 phals that are all doing wonderfully (majority with flowers and spikes now), so a work acquaintance gave me a phal that had not bloomed for her in the past 2-3 years for me to "nurse" back to health (and blooms!). I put it in new media and placed it in the midst of my thriving "family" and what do you suppose happens? EVERY single leaf fell off! I'm dreading her phone call one of these days asking me how "her" phal is doing. I'm praying for a basal keiki before that happens...........
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Old 02-07-2007, 09:33 PM
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Is mine salvageable?

I have a Dtps. which succumbed to crown rot recently. Earlier today, I took it out of its pot and am not sure what to make of it. At any rate, I soaked it in Physan 20 for 10 minutes. While soaking, I was looking at it and thinking what's the point. It's probably dead. Since I can't decide to either 'nurse' it or chuck it. I've placed it in a bag and took pics to show you all and get your opinion before doing anything else.

Keep/nurse it or chuck it?!
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Old 02-07-2007, 10:31 PM
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Sorry to be the barer of bad news, but those roots look pretty dead. When you sqeeze them, are they soft? Phal roots are usually white or green. Beige is usually bad.

Its easier to just go out an buy a new plant.

That said, it is very satisfying to bring a plant back from the dead. I firmly believe that there is much for a beginner to learn from doing so.
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Old 02-07-2007, 11:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucifer View Post
Sorry to be the barer of bad news, but those roots look pretty dead. When you sqeeze them, are they soft? Phal roots are usually white or green. Beige is usually bad.

Its easier...
Actually, some of them are firm even when the color is yellow/beige in color.

Oh well. I guess it's orchid heaven. I'll keep the name tag, in case I decide to buy the same plant which was really cute and had beautiful blooms.
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Old 02-07-2007, 11:36 PM
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I tried the "sphag-n-bag" technique (without the soaking though) but after a while mold seemed to develop and that's when I took it out again. Do I really seal it without any air holes or any of that sort? Thanks a bunch (on the behalf of the dying phal)
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Old 02-08-2007, 01:32 AM
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Arlene - that "ball" of brown roots almost looks like a couple of tangling spiders! I'm just leaving mine in the east window in the media and clear pot - may or may not amount to anything - certainly nothing to loose at this point. New Keiki - I think you need to have some air movement in and out of the bag or mold/mildew etc. develops in the stagnant air - I've only tried this once myself and then only half-heartedly. Maybe Cynthia will "weigh in" shortly and can give us all the minute details - as she utilizes this method. mike
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Old 02-08-2007, 03:45 AM
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When I did the sphag and bag method with a phal, I had problems with white mold. Everyday or every other day I would dip the root nub in a small cup of 3% hydrogen peroxide and place the plant in the bag. The plant I placed in a styrafoam cup that I'd poked holes into and then in the bag. In the bottom corner of the bag I put a damp paper towel and sealed the bag. Then I got busy with other things and didn't check on it every day. So about six weeks later I was really ecstatic to find it had 3 new roots. Probably the sphag and bag method will work without the pre-soak of plant in rooting hormone sugar solution. But I do believe letting the plant soak up nutrients for a couple hours in that solution is highly beneficial in its recovery.
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Old 02-08-2007, 12:34 PM
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i've had the mold in the bag too; i just try to open the bag and puff some different air in it every few days.

so why is it that we keep trying to revive these silly little plants? (other than the fact that they're pretty expensive.)
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Old 02-08-2007, 02:08 PM
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arleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rough
Mike, I looked at it again. It does look like a couple of spiders... Today, I'll try one more thing -- soak the roots in Superthrive or Daniel Barrett's revive formula. We'll see what happens.
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Old 02-08-2007, 02:56 PM
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mayres is a glorious beacon of lightmayres is a glorious beacon of lightmayres is a glorious beacon of lightmayres is a glorious beacon of lightmayres is a glorious beacon of lightmayres is a glorious beacon of light
Good idea arlene - maybe I'll soak mine in superthrive this weekend too!
Janet - yes! Why? I doubt many "normal" folks would?
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Old 02-08-2007, 04:12 PM
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Does the plant really mean that much to you that you are willing to invest so much time, money and energy into a bunch of roots that may or may not survive, and if they do, may or may not bloom for four years or more? If so, then make the effort. If not, then chuck it and buy a new plant that will give you lots of pleasure for those four years. My motto is "only grow knock-your-socks-off plants and forget all the others."
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Old 02-08-2007, 05:03 PM
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arleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rough
For some of us, it's a matter of curiousity or want to experiment if an orchid (aside from the ghost orchid) will produce new growth with just roots.
Mamarazzi likes this.
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Old 02-08-2007, 05:07 PM
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Arleneg, if it's the experiment you would like to do, then go for it. But you might still want to buy a new one to give you pleasure while the first one struggles.
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Old 02-08-2007, 07:51 PM
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mayres is a glorious beacon of lightmayres is a glorious beacon of lightmayres is a glorious beacon of lightmayres is a glorious beacon of lightmayres is a glorious beacon of lightmayres is a glorious beacon of light
I don't know about Arlene, but in my case I DO have about 25-30 phals that ARE blooming and thrilling the socks off me - so it is not a matter of out with the sick/ill and replace with another plant - I have plenty of other plants to enjoy already. Each of these experiments are learning experiences that can later be shared with others..........
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Old 02-08-2007, 08:20 PM
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arleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rough
Mike is right on. Among the 30+ orchids I have, a few of them are in spike/bloom. Some have new growths.
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Old 02-08-2007, 09:33 PM
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You can soak those roots in gold, it won't do any good. There are one or two species that can keiki from the roots, it is much easier to throw that mess in the trash.
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Old 02-09-2007, 01:13 AM
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Thanks for the encouragement Willc73! Can't you just humor us a "little" bit?
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Old 02-10-2007, 01:02 AM
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sorry, thought you wanted advice, not smoke.
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Old 02-10-2007, 05:03 PM
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Best way to resuscitate a dead orchid is to throw it on the compost pile.
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Old 02-10-2007, 09:42 PM
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Good suggestion Ellen. Or you get so many orchids that you are happy when one bites the dust.
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Old 02-11-2007, 10:25 AM
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Hello Mike.....
This is Winterwhite/Mary. I'm curious what you thought happened that that Phal that lost all its leaves. Do you think the shock of replanting was too much or perhaps whatever was happening had already started and you just caught the tail end? I'm thinking of doing the bag and spag method with a few of my barely surviving phals. So we'll see. Thanks for any response to your experience of loosing all those leaves. Mary
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Old 02-11-2007, 05:22 PM
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gerneveyn:

question for you: when you say you put the plant in the styrofoam cup, did you also put medium in it? and if so, did you water it before you put it in the bag? I have 1 phal that only has 1 root left and I want to bag it like you did. I just don't know if I should do the same to my keiki as it didn't show any growth at all - I mean the latest leaf didn't even grow in size!? - since I cut it off a few months ago.

Thanks in advance!?
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Old 02-11-2007, 07:54 PM
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Hi Winterwhite/Mary - I wish I knew the answer to my dilemna - because I certainly don't wish to repeat it. Here is a little more detail of occurred. I transplanted all but one of my phals to a mix of coir, perlite and a little charcoal on July 1. I had intended on moving them to a mix of bark and sphag, but after viewing the president of our orchid society's phals in coir I said, "I WANT my phals to look like THAT!" Most of them are now in spike, bud or bloom and looking wonderful - so, so far that part is good. My co-worker's plant was sitting in a less than ideal location for serveral years with insifficient light and I repotted and set it in the window of my office - where I have 4-5 other phals that are doing fine. I do NOT have any control over other employees potentially spritzing any of them outside my knowledge - during the periods of the day I am not there (the office is busy 5 days a week all day long). Maybe someone sprayed my plants including the crown thinking they were doing a good thing when I wasn't there? (I do have a spray bottle nearby that i use to spray some of the plants air roots on a routine basis). Not probably - but possible? Initially a few of the bottom leaves fell off this plant after I repotted and I chaked this up to "normal". I brought the plant home when it was continuing to look less than ideal health and put it under my lights with the other phals at home. A week later I was reviewing my plants and noted that the entire plant had just disintegrated before my eyes. I'm thinking that somehow this plant had disease organisms resident in the crown area and somehow in the transition they got started multiplying and before I really recognized what was happening it was over. Maybe if I'd have know what was happening I could have treated it with something and cut the process off at the pass, but I didn't see it coming, and before I knew it - poof! Yep - I think you hit the nail on the head - it WAS already happening BEFORE I saw it coming......
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Old 02-11-2007, 11:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by new_keiki View Post
gerneveyn:

question for you: when you say you put the plant in the styrofoam cup, did you also put medium in it? and if so, did you water it before you put it in the bag? I have 1 phal that only has 1 root left and I want to bag it like you did. I just don't know if I should do the same to my keiki as it didn't show any growth at all - I mean the latest leaf didn't even grow in size!? - since I cut it off a few months ago.

Thanks in advance!?
No, I put the rootless phal in the styrofoam cup without any medium. I did it mainly to keep the plant in an upright position and out of direct contact with the moistened paper towel. Instead of a bag you could use an empty plastic container.
Right now I have a phal with two keikis that I have left on the plant, and they have grown very slowly.
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Old 02-12-2007, 02:37 AM
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Semi-hydroponics...

Dear all, I've read on other forums that some have had success by potting their 'dying' orchids in semi-hydroponics style. I've just done the same with one of my phals that has 3 leaves left and no roots... If you want to save your plant and willing to experiment, maybe you can do the same?

The method:
Use a plastic bottle (depends on size of plant, I used one of those 1.5L cola plastic bottles), with the top cut off. I made 8-10 holes around the sides of the bottle about 1 inches up from the bottom. NOTE: NO HOLES at the base of the bottle. Filled it with inert clay particles (Hydroton / LECA) which I've soaked overnight. Put my plant into the medium, and filled the bottle with water.

The water will drain out from the side holes, leaving only an inch of water at the base - this acts as a reservoir and maintains higher humidity. The hydroton will 'wick' the water up from the reservoir at the bottom and will ensure even 'moist'-ness in the medium. If you want to increase the humidity even more, can place the entire set-up in a clear plastic bag, but don't seal the bag. There should be less risk of rot / fungus as there is some air circulation.

You may wish to spray your plant with some fungicide - I personally use captan; never tried physan before.

Anyway, since I've potted my phal this way 2 weeks ago, it's rate of 'dehydration' has slowed tremendously. I'm still waiting for root growth for its eventual survival, but at least right now, I managed to delay its death.

Hope that helps!

Jaxz
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Old 06-21-2007, 03:28 PM
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Why all of the suddenly this thread stopped? What is the latest status of the experiments? I just love to hear from it. Trying to Shag-N-Bag right now with few unhealthy phals.

Thanks!!!
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Old 06-21-2007, 05:19 PM
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I've been able to raise from near death phals with one lousy dehydrated leaf and no crown, but my leafless phal I gave up on after five months of no activity. Seemed kind of silly to be watering media every few weeks with no evidence of life. How dead does dead have to be? I'd be interested to hear if anyone else had success as well.
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Old 06-22-2007, 05:08 PM
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arleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rougharleneg is a jewel in the rough
An update -- my Dtps. went to orchid heaven. I'm thinking about ordering it from the same nursery, if they still have it.
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Old 06-22-2007, 05:33 PM
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I give a talk to garden clubs and senior class's. Its more of a Q&A session on orchids. I introduce them to the Shovel Prune method of dealing with dead or nearly dead plants. Unless the plant is VERY special I don't think that its worth the time or effort to revive them. For the general public, orchids are cheap enough to buy. For the orchid grower/lover, that special orchid might be worth saving but you have to know when to say OUT!!!!!! I repot my sick orchids, give them a VERY stern talking to and tell them either produce or out. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. LOL
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Old 02-07-2008, 10:41 AM
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Phal with just roots growing new leaves sort of keiki's..

I posted pictures of my mounted phal that is growing a new set of leavs on it and something else too, now that their bigger i can tell that they're both new sets of leaves but they're really close to eachother. when they get bigger its gonna be a problem, what do i do? their not erally keiki's.. i dont really see howthey can be removed. heres the pic again, another problemis that i have no idea how to post my own question, my own post, i only know how to reply. haha can somebody send me aprivate message lettin me know?

so heres the picture i had posted last week or so. they're both new sets of leaves. and u can see where the old crown was in the passed. what on earth can i do? they'r so close together. and much bgiger already
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Old 02-07-2008, 06:01 PM
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that's pretty cool.

don't worry about it for the moment, wait a couple months and see what it does. when they get bigger, the way to separate them may become obvious.
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Old 02-07-2008, 06:15 PM
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wow! you're going to have a double plant with maybe double flowers! -unless you seperate them as Janet a says...
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Old 02-08-2008, 05:59 PM
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Cheer up...This is what happened to my lovely Ph. Gold Rush Brother [golden amboin (=goldens sands x amboinensis) x amabilis].
I bought it in July as a beautiflu 1ft phal. Mind you, it has the excellent genetics from Golden Sands, so it could the reason it so miraculously survived.
In the summer, I would leave them outside for the night on a window ledge and put them back in before the sun would hit them. One day I left for the office in a real hurry and FORGOT some phals under the unforgiving August midday athenian sun. That day it got 38C (100F).
This phal lost ALL of its leaves, except one or two burried in the s/h pellets. Most of the sun facing roots where gone as well.
I was furious and feeling guilty, I kept tending to it as if nothing had happened, although I think I kept it less moist than when it had leaves. I used superthrive and the occassional fertiliser.
2 months later the destroyed crown begun bulging and then a few days later, a tiny green blade emerged...I couldn't believe my eyes.
This is how it is now, nearly 5 months later. The spikes, undamaged, have both branched and form 3 buds each. I know I should have cut the spikes,but hey the plant knows better, huh? Besides, it could keiki any time now.
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Old 02-10-2008, 07:21 PM
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Question

This is a very interesting thread ! & would like to have some advice,
I went away for 6 weeks and left my 'cat sitter' to also water my orchids.... I have been back for 3 weeks now and have found 3 phal noids with crown rot and rotted roots... I have thrown away 2 of these
The third is/was a Phal Bellina Violacea Borneo (small plant; has previously flowered ) I have 'kept' it as roots are very green and still growing ..
It is planted in spag, was doing well before I left...
Please have a look at the photo of the roots of my Violacea Borneo, thank you in advance for any suggestions of the next move, they would be very welcome indeed......

I have had basal keikis before on phal noids with a much worse root rot ..
I have the patience to "see what happens" ... has anyone got any suggestions as to how to try and revive if at all possible ? I have been keeping it 'just' moist enough for the roots to remain plump and have moved it to a west pointing window - it used to be in the middle of a room with large west and east windows on either side and was 'living' but not doing anything spectacular!- I got it around may/june; together with another of the same species which is a larger specimen and has a bud and new leaf developing ever since this time, no root rot and looks to be in a state of suspended animation... not worrying but not "exciting" either!
Sorry about the long winded details but any advice on anything to try to get this plant back to health would be very much appreciated
Nenella
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Old 02-11-2008, 02:15 AM
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This is developing into a very interesting thread indeed.
nanella - if you can get ahold of some keiki past and put around the crown area this might help (?). I think Kevin suggested this with one of my crownless plants awhile back and I'm inclined to give it a go soon. (I do fortunately have a few leaves left yet).
After reading this thread I can see the potential viability of a leafless phal is certainly affected/determined by the "life" within the roots and crown base at the time the leaves are removed. For example a quick leaf kill by sun or maybe even a frost my only affect the leaves and not the rest of the plant - so that it might potentially have enough health in the remaining parts to some back "from the dead". Of course good temperature, humidity, etc. good culture are only going increase the odds. On the other hand, a plant that has a deteriorating root system due to poor culture or otherwise poor conditions - and maybe has been deteriorating for some time - maybe disease organisms involved (?) - most likely it will be a lost cause.
Touria - excellent photograph of your pair of developing basal keiki's. It will probably take some time, but eventually you will be able to remove one of them from the current set of roots - as the crown develops both new crowns will develop new roots along with leaves and you can leave one with the original roots and start the other with just a few newer ones. Looks like it will be a very interesting process - maybe you can share a few more pics of the next months to come? It is educational for all of us!
Since phals have become so inexpensive it is hard for many to understand the patience needed of bringing plants like these back - in good conditions 2-3 years. On the other hand the emotional reward is worth it for many and if you have many other plants you are taking care of anyway it is really not any "trouble".
Keep the updates coming and thanks for sharing!
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Old 02-11-2008, 08:00 AM
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I had a zygopetalum with one little scrawny bulb left to it, I almost threw it in the trash. I thought better of it and put it in the spag and bag. Well low and behold after about 6months and a lot of patience it is growing roots and a very tiny set of leaves!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can't believe it!!!! My next question is how long do I leave it in the spag and bag? The leaves are about an 1" long and it has a root about 2" and another one or two coming?
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Old 02-11-2008, 09:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nenella View Post
The third is/was a Phal Bellina Violacea Borneo (small plant; has previously flowered ) I have 'kept' it as roots are very green and still growing ..
It is planted in spag, was doing well before I left...
Please have a look at the photo of the roots of my Violacea Borneo, thank you in advance for any suggestions of the next move, they would be very welcome indeed......

i am so sorry. There is no way this plant can recover.
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Old 02-11-2008, 11:34 AM
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nenella - How warm do you keep the environment that your phal is in? I noticed a few years back that if you keep phals in too cool a room/environment over the winter months that what you describe is exactly what you will get - plants appear to be doing absolutely nothing. Could be plastic plants if you didn't know better!
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Old 01-31-2012, 12:56 PM
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Hehe forgive me for not reading through all the replies.

I'd just like to add, I have a Phal parishii which dropped its leaves (which I knew it can do thanks katrina for holding me to this fact hehe), and is now sending out a spike. So I guess that answers the original question 2 ways.

Forgive my photography.
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Old 01-31-2012, 01:05 PM
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Phal parishii is considered a deciduous phal and is capable of dropping it's leaves should conditions warrant it but not all phals have this same ability/characteristic.

royalkat -- can't wait to see the blooms on your little parishii!
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Old 01-31-2012, 02:26 PM
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Just to echo or mirror what some have said, there are a few deciduous Phal. species that will drop their leaves when they go through their dry period. There are a few species that will occasionally sprout new plantlets from severed roots. But, unless you have one of these species or a hybrid that contains predominantly these plants in its genetic history, the likelihood of it coming back is extremely low. I have managed to resuscitate Phals with as little as one leaf.

I guess I am saying, don't abandon hope, give it a month or two, preferably in a high humidity environment, it might spring back to life. But, don't get your hopes up, chances are it is dead and the roots just don't know it yet.

Justin
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Old 02-24-2013, 12:20 PM
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How did you revive your one leaf no crown? At first I had two leaves but then they separated they are still nice and green but I don't know how to go from there. If you were able to revive yours please help with anything you know please.
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:30 AM
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Thanks to all of the people who posted their knowledge on this thread. I had a large Phal that someone suggested I carve up. I was told where to make my cuts, the medium to put the plants in, and how to water them. One of the plants has beige, sick looking roots. One is on the compost pile. One is a single leaf, but has good roots.

Had I found this forum prior to butchering my plant, I would have done it differently and would probably have two healthy plants. Using the advice here, I'm going to try to save the plant with beige roots. I'm glad I found all of you!
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mayres View Post
I'd like to hear from someone who has actually had a phal come back from nothing but roots. How long did it take to send up a basal keiki? Anyone??????? I have had a plant send up a basal keiki from a struggling plant that had but two small floppy leaves, which eventually whithered once the keiki had 2-3 small leaves. The resulting "plant" now looks like a keiki that would have been removed from a flower spike (size-wise). It is going to be about two years to hopefully get this plant to blooming size......
I have, actually. It's my nature to keep the little sucker around and try to revive if I can. Some have bitten the dust, but one I got a couple of years ago has a nice three inch long spike going right now. It never got a keiki. Leaves just started to appear, so that was incentive enough for me to watch what would happen.

Hang with it, Pammie. If you have good roots and one leaf, just give it the best culture you can.
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Old 09-12-2017, 03:52 AM
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Hey Did the Phal come back with just roots?
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