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Old 03-09-2009, 11:33 PM
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Fungicides for deflasking

I have a flask on the way (den Samarai x self). I haven't really had much experience with orchids- apart from owning quite a few now-, so jumping into deflasking is probably quite ambitous (my impetuous nature I guess).

What's the best fungicide when deflasking? I have some Mancozeb plus sulphur. Will this be ok? I'm in Queensland Australia, so anyone with experience as to what is available here would be good.

Also it's quite warm here- do I need a heat set up or can I just use a mini greenhouse in sheltered position?
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Old 03-10-2009, 01:31 AM
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Hi Tansyflower.
Welcome to the forum, fellow Aussie.
Quote:
I have a flask on the way (den Samarai x self)
.
It would not hurt to give it some warm and humidity until they harden off and start to grow.
I do not know about that cross, if it is a normal Australian Dendrobium or the tropical ones.
I did a few months ago, several flasks of your (QLD>) Dendrobium bigibium, they were treated with a fungicide I have used for years, called "Fongarid".
Place them in a warm spot and they are growing like weeds.

Welcome to trying to grow orchids from flasks as it is a wonderful experience to see them grow and eventually flower.
Best of Luck
Ron
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:30 AM
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There's a lot of debate about the benefit of using fungicides on deflasked orchids. While they do help reduce fungal problems, they can also adversely affect growth and weaken the plants, especially very small seedlings. I do not use fungicides prophylactically on any of the orchid I deflask and I rarely have an issue with damping off. If I do notice a problem I will use Fongarid, as Ron recommended. While Fongarid is registered for the control of Pythium and Phytophthora it seems to control other fungal problems as well.
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Old 03-10-2009, 10:53 AM
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Now having deflasked a thousand seedling later, i can safely advocate the use of fungicides. while many don't believe the use of fungicides as it is expensive and time consuming process. I find that Dendrobium seedling and Big catt seedling can tolerate fungus attack. If you control your watering to a minimium then fungicides uses can be reduced. My percentage of raising seedling increases from 40% to 80 ++% to more established state. While it may depend on the humidity level of an area. A high humidity that stay persistently above 50% would warrant uses of fungicides. A low humidity and hot environment does not encourage fungus growth. So a high humidity and cold place will promote the growth of fungus and mold. A high air flow does not seem to help to relieve the situation.
On the other hand, a good dose of direct morning sun will reduces fungus growth to a minimum. After all 15 minutes is all it need for UV to kill fungus spore. Having morning sun for 30 mins does wonders for your plant. So a combination of morning sun
and mild fungicides will prevent fungus attack. I find Mancozeb too strong for seedling. I use Captan on a regular basis. However, I do rotate fungicides as fungus do get resistance to a type of fungicides as time progress. So control your watering is alway the best bet. Unless you like me will have a spasm if i dont water twice a day. Then fungides is your best friend.
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Old 03-10-2009, 05:37 PM
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Fungicides

Lots of helpful advice given above, some orchids such as Cymbidiums, I never use a fungicide on as they are usually very tuff.
To me it is also a good insurance, at about $15 a packet of 5 sachets it is good value.
I grow a lot of Paphs for instance and often at $200 per flask, a spray with a $3 sachet of Fongirid is cheep insurance

Below is some of the D bigibums I deflasked a few months ago.
In all about 80 seedlings and so far loss has been nil.
Just insurance!
Ron
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:14 PM
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I apply two or 3 application of fungicides a week. It get quite expensive over time. Of course seeing the young plant survive is well worth it.
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Old 03-10-2009, 09:25 PM
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Thanks for the advice on the sunlight, and the fungicides.

A couple of questions:


In relation to the Fongarid: it didn't have instructions on the packet (I had a look in Bunnings). How much does one sachet cover, and if I don't use the whole sachet can I save it in powder form or made up in liquid? Also is it good for the bigger orchids? How often do you give them a fungicide treatment (every time u water or periodicallly)?

When watering the babies, I know you have to keep them moist for the first few days. Should I mist them? or just sprinkle with a little watering can?After that. how often do you water?

I'm starting to sound like a two year old babbling out questions, but I'd prefer not to kill my seedlings (they should be here today!!).
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Old 03-10-2009, 09:27 PM
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Oh, and also a seller at the markets said to use a product called envy, which reduces moisture loss. And helps with fungi. Any thoughts on this?
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Old 03-11-2009, 01:42 AM
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This is just my experience. I generally like to keep it dry on the first few days of growing seedling- bare (nonthing no media). So as to dry up the media that i did not get rid off. You be surprise that some media still stuck on the young root. If the Gel media is left behind , it is a breeding ground for fungus. If your friend like to mist the first few day it might be because the humidity in your area is low. Any gel media left behind dried within
hours of exposing to the atmosphere. Then this is fine.
Fungicides application for me depend on the weather. If it rain everyday for the past 3 weeks. Then I will be applying fungicides almost every other day. I alway apply weak fungicides with diluted 63 fertilizer. So application of fungicides replace watering process. when I water, i drench the whole pot. I dont like to mist it is as good as not watering at all. Depend of species or hybrid, i might wait for media to dry (or semi dry)before I water again. All this is experience in watering it is best to learn from the local orchid society members.

as to what type of fungicides . Find a broad spectrum fungides and start from there. Use half strength all the time until 1 year later then I would apply full strength (You would rotate the kind of fungicides you use also)
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Old 03-11-2009, 02:42 AM
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Hi Tansyflower.
Quote:
Oh, and also a seller at the markets said to use a product called envy,
.
some people use it.
I personally do not use it and do not like it on orchids.
It is a polymeyer type plastic coating. Basically it coat all the plants with a thin plastic coat so as to avoid dehydration.
It all seals of the breathing parts of the orchid for maybe two weeks.
It was not recommended by the manufacture for putting on deflasked orchids roots.
it is better suited as a crop protector in times of stress
Cheerio
Ron
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Old 03-11-2009, 04:14 AM
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My babies are here!! I am going to deflask tonight, as they got a bit messed up in the jar (the accidentally got posted to my parents in Tasmania, then back here).

I am going to pot them up seperately and give them as a dose of fongarid (I got some in town). After that I will wait and see how they go. I'll give them a small spell of morning sun (when I remember-cos I don't want to forget them and come home to find a heap of shriveled green strings).

Digitalgate- are you recommending no watering at all for the first few days? I think Singapore may have similar climate to here (subtropical), so deflasking needs may be similar.

Thanks for the pic of your babies, Ron- I have been eyeing off a friend's neglected cooktown orchid that is covered in keikis.

I will post a pic tomorrow of the potted babies.

Last edited by tansyflower; 03-11-2009 at 04:25 AM. Reason: I forgot something
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Old 03-11-2009, 05:43 AM
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no , that not what i mean. I keep it dry 1 or 2 day. then start watering. My humidity seldom drop below 50%. You should take a note of that. Aus has a very low humidity. You might get away with one day. of dry spell. then soak them in water for a few minute then pot it up with media. From there it is every day watering (drenching). seedling raising is very difficult with knowing how much water it need. Sometime, i only wait for 6 hours , i already pot it up.
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Old 03-11-2009, 06:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tansyflower View Post
Thanks for the advice on the sunlight, and the fungicides.

In relation to the Fongarid: it didn't have instructions on the packet (I had a look in Bunnings). How much does one sachet cover, and if I don't use the whole sachet can I save it in powder form or made up in liquid?
Fongarid is made up at 2g(1 sachet)/L and sprayed until run off. The packaging says it's effective for 6 weeks so you should only need to use it once while deflasking (hardening off shouldn't take more than 4 weeks). I can't comment on storage life in suspension. I've always measured out usable amounts on a balance using it immediately once mixed in water and storing unused portions in airtight containers (although not everyone has access to analytical balances). However, furalaxyl (the active compound) is supposed to be fairly stable in water so long as it's not exposed to extremes of pH or UV light. Don't mix it with other chemicals and, as it's a D group fungicide, don't use another D group fungicide if you want to rotate spraying regimes.
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Old 03-11-2009, 06:49 AM
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Still haven't deflasked- trying to get kids to go to bed!!! (they are not getting the hint)
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Old 03-11-2009, 08:20 AM
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Not sure if the seedlings are ok, as I have not deflasked before.

Some are sort of brownish around the start of the roots, and some roots are a bit dangly- like they are close to falling off. Not sure if they are bruised or damaged or rotten. Or this may be normal?? It's just the base of the roots, the rest of the root looks ok.

Other seedlings roots look much more sturdy.

I'm going to try and attach a picture- having trouble with computer.
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Old 03-11-2009, 11:28 AM
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Ohhhh that is really clear. It look healthy , dont worry about it. Rinse the media throught from the roots .For this plant i would dry it out for a day. Dont worry that it shrivelled the roots. Then pot it up spray fungicides on the second day (diluted please). you have to let it acclimatised to stronger light as time progress (this will take 3 months). water every time the media appear dry (in the middle of the media). Hope for the best.
How many did you ordered?
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Old 03-11-2009, 11:50 AM
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This is a great thread Thanks everyone.
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Old 03-11-2009, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Then pot it up spray fungicides on the second day (diluted please).
Sorry for this, but that is wrong to tell a new grower trying to deflask orchids for the first time.
Always use fungicides at full recommended strengths.
Reason, if used at a weak streanght it allows the fungi/bacteria to build up resistance to it. Also it may not be strong as to kill the fungi/bacteria properly. that is why the have a recommended strength on the packet's

Use at recomended strength straight after de-flasking and potting them up.
Don't give the fungi a day or so to start the attack on the plants.
Fongarid is systemic and I only use just once all de-flasked plants
I use a small sterilized water can with a rose head, just give the lot a good soaking including the potting mix.

Best of luck
Ron
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Old 03-11-2009, 06:24 PM
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my logic is after having a dry spell it will decrease the chances of growing fungus. The gel media will be dried (unable to gain water).On the second day, a dilute fungicides with strong direct morning(short) sun will prevent any fungus from establishing itself. Tansy mention she going to use morning sunlight thus this advise. Full strength will come a few weeks later as time progress. Full morning sunlight is a natural fungicides . I normally use
7am to 8.30am for young seedling. I use to have 50% success rate before applying this method. Even since applying this method 90% survival rate is the norm now. after all
with Dendrobium and a thousand seedling later this method works for me.
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Old 03-11-2009, 11:30 PM
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Bugger, I just dropped them!!

Not far, just as I was getting them out of the cupboard. Some popped out of their little pots, and there is a bit of potting mix strewn around, but doesn't seem to have damaged any (I hope).

Anyway, they look pretty robust (to my untrained eye), so I am going to let them dry out til tomorrow morning and then give them a full-strength dose of Fongarid. After that I think I will rely on sunlight unless disaster strikes. I don't put fungicide on my adult orchids and they seem to go ok (just the occasional spot). Maybe that is because they are out in the garden and get a bit of sunlight?

I bought one flask. There were supposed to be 25+ seedlings, but I ended up with 30 seedlings plus three little pots with all the teensy mutants in them (I think some had no roots so not much hope for them).
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Old 03-12-2009, 04:15 AM
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they look yummy.
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Old 03-12-2009, 07:21 AM
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They do look yummy. I can't wait till they grow
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Old 03-13-2009, 07:39 AM
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The babies are doing well- I fongarid-ed them tonight (wasn't meaning to leave them two days but time sorta got away and they were looking pretty hearty). I think they will benefit from their first water too, altho the time they had to dry them out really seems to have done them good (they look tougher).
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Old 03-13-2009, 11:03 AM
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you can water anytime the media look dry. If your humidity is above 40% , it probably can survive with only once a week contact fungicides. Any higher you need twice a week of fungicides. I would rotate the kind of fungicides i used.

Last edited by digitalgate; 03-13-2009 at 07:20 PM.
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Old 03-13-2009, 11:39 AM
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The only time I have ever used fungicide on seedlings is when they were already contaminated in the flask. Once they are up and growing, I do not use it. Digitalgate lives in a very humid environment and must need to fight fungus continually but most of us don't have the issue even growing in a g/h with good humidity.

If fungus is not an issue for your other plants, save the fungicide until (if) it is needed.

Brooke
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Old 03-13-2009, 07:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brooke View Post
The only time I have ever used fungicide on seedlings is when they were already contaminated in the flask. Once they are up and growing, I do not use it. Digitalgate lives in a very humid environment and must need to fight fungus continually but most of us don't have the issue even growing in a g/h with good humidity.

Brooke
Even Benetay who stay in the same area water his moss plant once a day. His moss is bone dry at the end of the day. Mine couldn't dry up in 3 days. I stay near the coast where humidity seldom drop below 50%. AND it rain everyday.. URgh......
Thus constantly fighting with fungus. I have five fungicides that i rotate them around the year wish i have more to rotate.
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Old 03-16-2009, 12:22 AM
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After fongarid-ing them. the next day they were a bit yellow and slimy looking. I sprayed them at night- i think this was wrong as I put them away wet.

Anyway, I put them outside under a shady tree, where there is heaps of airflow, and they dried out a bit. Looking much better today (sigh of relief), drier and greener.

The mix is still damp, when should I water again?

Also, when should they get their first dose of plant food, and what sort?
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Old 03-16-2009, 12:30 AM
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slimy look? Not suppose to happen. You have wet rot. Take it out of the media , leave it on a kitchen paper towel air dry. Change fungicides . This fungus is resistant to your fungicides. It is time to use mancozeb(should be wettable powder) one tea spoon one litre
of water. Spray the whole seedling. Leave it air dry. The plant will get a bit shrivel from too little water. But i rather you not lose the seedling. No sun at all for the time being at least 1 week.The seedling have to stay in this condition for 1 week. spray alternate days with fungicides and spray twice a day. you have to
water the plant twice a day. Fungicides replaces watering for the time being.
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Old 03-16-2009, 12:48 AM
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After I pull them out I should leave them on paper towel for a week??
Should I have them open to the air? I had a badly fitting lid on the container. Mainly to protect from foul play and unforeseen events- they already had a ball bounce over them yesterday on the lawn

My husband said they looked like they had damping off (he is used to growing fruit trees not orchids tho).

Will the mancozeb harm them? I have mancozeb+ (the plus is sulphur).

I have attached pic. Some of the brown bits are because they got shook up in the jar as they got posted twice, and some leaves are a bit crushed.
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Old 03-16-2009, 04:53 AM
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yap fungus problem. you might need to decrease watering. Use half the suggested dosage required. to spray on them. When i see problem like these. I would let it as dry as possible. As yours is a nobile dendrobium. It should be able to handle the dry spell. Instead of watering twice a day. try once a day in the morning. Alternate day fungicides with 63 fertilizers. Do not cover the seedling while on the paper towels. I am in 80% humidity right now you might need to adjust accordingly.
what is your humidity and temperature right now? Do you have a max and min thermometer with hygrometer

i agree with your husband about the damping off

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Old 03-16-2009, 05:22 AM
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That's what i will do too, got to gauge by the numbers shown on the screen. That will determine if i should water them, hold off watering or to lower the humidity. Since i sleep with my plants, i do not like to use fungicide. That means i will have to lower my humidity to below 60% RH and hold back watering at night when fungus are at their peak of production. Luckily there is morning sun to vent off any remaining spores.

I think a max/min thermometer with RH readings is really good as it tells you the daily high and lows inclusive of RH. I think with figures, it will be easier for us to envisage the problem more clearly.

Hope everything is doing fine!

Cheers!
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Old 03-16-2009, 05:51 AM
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Does mancozeb harm your plant? I think in your desperate situation you need desperate measure. Usually, when the plant reach this stage. I throw away the plant, it mean certain death. Might be different in your case.
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Old 03-17-2009, 12:57 AM
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I haven't mancozeb-ed yet (procrastinating). They still look the same- no worse- what does damping off do?
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Old 03-23-2009, 09:33 AM
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sorry, miss this one. They usually cause the root to rot and the seedling usually unable to absorb will then die one by one. If that did not happen, the leaves will rot away.
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Old 03-23-2009, 06:20 PM
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Hi.
Quote:
I haven't mancozeb-ed yet (procrastinating). They still look the same- no worse- what does damping off do?
It is the killer if you have got it in the mix/plants.
Plants go glassy looking and rot away.
too late by then, may save a few.
I am afraid the advice given has led you up the wrong path.
Only time I ever had damping off was when I did my first flask of native Dendrobiums.
Was told fungicides would kill them! What a load of bull.
I deflask many flasks over the years and my system works well for me.
Deflask in town tap water as it is much cleaner from bugs than rain water.
Always make sure all items used are sterilised with common household bleach.
Use a good fungicide.
Water in well and place in a shady position with some fresh air and warmth.
Water only when they are nearly dry. Always early in the day so they dry out by night time.
Mistakes are the best teacher some days.
Photo is of 3 flasks of Dend. bigibum seedling deflasked about 3-4 months ago.
No problems
Best of luck
Ron
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Old 03-23-2009, 11:44 PM
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Please, no-one take this as a guide as to how to grow orchid seedlings!!

Ron,

I, ummm, had a few dramas with them....

I did end up mancozebbing them. Then I put them on the verandah on paper towel in the shade to dry out. I came inside for a while, and when I went to check on them the local pack of magpies had dragged the paper towel off the table, dumped them onto the grass in the full Qld midday sun and ran off with whichever ones looked tastiest (for making nests, I imagine). Their poor little roots went all flat and papery.

However, I picked up whatever I could find (lucky their roots are white), and tipped tapwater over them, then kept dripping tapwater over them all afternoon. Their little roots (mostly) plumped up again.

Next day I repotted them loosely in sphagnum moss, and (apart from the ones that were made into nests) they are doing ok!! Maybe the sun killed any fungus in them?? They haven't exactly grown, and a couple are a bit touch and go, as they have black on the sheaths up the side, but I'm crossing my fingers.

I think I might try your way next time!
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Old 03-23-2009, 11:52 PM
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Actually reading your post, I don't think they had damping off, as they didn't go glassy looking, they went sort of slimy looking from being wet and covered for too long.

They are now on the verandah full time, they get a dose of very early morning sunshine, probably only till 7.30.

However the sphagnum seems to be drying out really quickly, I've needed to water nearly every day (just the moss, not overhead onto the plant). Should I push it down a bit so it's more compact or just keep watering?

Also when do they need fert, and what type will be gentle enough?
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Old 03-24-2009, 09:24 AM
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of course they need fertilizer , just diluted. Very weak in the beginning. From the sound of it. Look like the seedling is doing well. Recovery will be slow,remember it take an average of 2 years from seedling to adulthood. If it is a clone , it will bloom before 2 years. If it was from a seed pod then it will take 3 years to see any flower.
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Old 03-24-2009, 09:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron View Post
Hi.

I deflask many flasks over the years and my system works well for me.
Deflask in town tap water as it is much cleaner from bugs than rain water.
Always make sure all items used are sterilised with common household bleach.

Ron
every one has to have a system that works for them. Take every advise given here with a pinch of salt. It might work for you, it might not work for you. It is by trial and error that you get to know what good for you. Ron may find full strength fungicides work for him. I find weak ones good for me. I do have a batch of seedling that I never apply fungicides. May be it is due to fact that the seedling is weak in the first place. who know?
I have a friend who grew orchids for 63 years never exposed his seedling to the element. While i dump some of them outdoor.As i do not have the shelter for it. He gave me his formula of raising seedling of 60 years and I try to stick to it.He even dont like to use systemic fungicides. There must be a reason for an old man who made his millions from orchid for developing a system that sound odd to you. As they alway said:" the prove is in the pudding".
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Old 03-24-2009, 10:47 AM
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i realized we all miss to mention centration of fungicides. I am using Thiram 80WP,
Metalaxyl+Mancozeb 65WP, Metalaxyl 75WP,Carbendazim 65%. All of them are agricultural grade. Meaning if you are using a 40WP Thiram then you apply full strength, while i can only apply half strength. Full strength mean certain death for young seedling. You might want to compare your concentration.
So if you are using FONGARID 250 WP then 1g per litre concentration is normal for you.

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Old 03-24-2009, 06:33 PM
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Quote:
Also when do they need fert, and what type will be gentle enough?
I start off with an organic fertiliser for the first couple of months. Seasol, A weak "Charlie Carp" mix etc.
This is gentle acting and gives them a good boost.
Then I go onto chemical fertiliser and use it at about 1/4 to 1/6 streanght until the plants get established
Best of luck with them
Cheerio
Ron
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Old 03-24-2009, 11:25 PM
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Digitalgate- thanks for the info on the fungicides- hopefully, with their daily dose of sunshine and their good airflow they shouldn't need too much.

Ron- I have Charlie Carp, I'll give that a go. Might help the moss retain a bit of moisture too.
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