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Old 06-28-2009, 04:41 PM
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Repotting questions.

I am a little confused as to when to repot my dendrobium(sp?). It is in a 3" pot now but the roots are coming out of the pot. Also, they are cracking the medium it is in. I have had it for a year and it is finished blooming.


Also, for Phalaenopsis, is it best to repot in the same size pot or increase the size when repotting. The one I have now is in a 4" pot and has a little root rot that I need to take care of. It is still in bloom but I think it would be best to repot it any way. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

One last question, how can you tell if an orchid is getting too much water? One of the orchids I bought has some browning around the edges of the leaves but I think it is due to over water.

Thanks for the help.
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Old 06-28-2009, 05:00 PM
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1. For repotting your phal, use a pot that just fits the good roots. It may be the same, smaller or bigger than the one you're using now.

If you use bark, be sure to pre-soak it for a day or so before the repot. Otherwise, the bark stays too dry, and that stresses the plant, causing it to drop some of the older flowers. For the first few weeks with new bark, be careful it doesn't get too dry. After that, the bark is conditioned enough so you don't have to worry.

Also, if you have sphag, a thin layer of sphag on top of the bark keeps moisture in. I've found with phals, catts and oncids that the new roots grow into this thin sphag layer.

If the leaves seem a little flaccid or wilty, put plastic bags over the leaves to keep the humidity in.

2. Too much water? The only way I know to tell is to take it out of the pot and look at the roots, also see if the medium is soggy.

The difficulty diagnosing is that *symptoms for a plant of too much water and too little water are the same.*. In both cases, the plant isn't getting enough water. In the one case, because it isn't getting enough water. In the second place, because the roots are starting to rot, so it isn't getting enough water.

If it's a new orchid that has the browning on the edge of the leaves, and you didn't cause it, I wouldn't worry til I saw the brown edge showing up on leaves grown in my care.

Hope this helps.
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Old 06-28-2009, 05:01 PM
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Monkey, dens and phals like to be fairly pot bound. Lots of orchids do. Check the roots, get rid of the obviously bad/dead ones (usually dark brown/black, usually mushy) and repot in a pot - often the same one it was in - that is just big enough to handle the remaining roots. If you ate potting in bark, which is likely, presoak it for a day or so with a couple drops of dishwashing liquid, which is a surfactant and allows the bark to better absorb water. Watering too much or too little results in the same thing - dead roots and, ultimately, a dead orchid. This becomes obvious with shriveled/wrinkled/pleated leaves since the roots aren't getting enough water. It all begins with the roots, once they're dealt with, then make sure you have the light right. Dens take a lot, phals not so much. Do some research on this site. To paraphrase, plant it and they will come (and come and come and....).
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Old 06-28-2009, 05:58 PM
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Thanks to both of you. I have been reading a lot on this site but just needed those things cleared up. Thanks again.
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Old 06-30-2009, 09:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monkey7 View Post
One last question, how can you tell if an orchid is getting too much water? One of the orchids I bought has some browning around the edges of the leaves but I think it is due to over water.

Thanks for the help.
Since most of the potting material is big and lots of drainage. Excess water is alway drain off. However, a wet charcoal, bark, moss is bad for dendrobium as they dont like wet. Use the skewer method for watering as a guage of how much water U need. This can only apply for Dendrobium not Phalaenopsis. Look for the articles under newbie questions.
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Old 07-01-2009, 03:27 PM
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Also, dendrobiums bloom better when pot bound. They don't like their roots disturbed. If you decide to repot, "pot it up". That is, move it from the pot it's in to only a slightly bigger pot without disturbing the roots.
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