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Old 09-21-2010, 08:44 PM
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Malathion Phal leaf loss?

Has anyone used Malathion on their orchids and had it damage your plants? I'm afraid I may have used it incorrectly or something. A couple of my phals are dropping leaves like crazy. Before they drop they turned this ugly greyish tone and became wrinkly and droopy. One Phal had 9 leaves and now has about 5 the other had four leaves and now has two. Also there is a weird discoloration on the bottom of one of the remaining leaves. I used it at a rate of about about a tablespoon per gallon. I would take pictures but sidenote....

I guess, this morning right before leaving for work I kicked over the malathion bottle and currently the fumes in my apartment are so bad I can't go in without getting a headache. I'm sitting in my parking lot on my laptop writing this until my apartment airs out. lol

The malathion also seemed to have had an ill-effect on some of my other houseplants as well, at first I thought it may have been poor culture or the change in environment. I'm thinking now that the malathion was a little to strong or something. Guhhhh, never using this stuff again. Smells like gasoline.

2nd sidenote and totally unrelated...I'm throwing my oncidium out tonight. I'm pretty sure it has a virus, allthough I haven't had it tested. From what I've gathered: to have a plant tested it costs 30-100 dollars and I spent ten on it. So, I figured it's not worth it. It has consistent yellow spots through out all the leaves and they aren't indented or anything (like a bug bit them). I don't want to take the risk of infecting my other plants. Oh well

Anyway, if any of y'all geeks have had a problem with malathion harming your orchids I'd love to know. Thanks.

Will take some pictures asap.

Last edited by krpot; 09-21-2010 at 08:46 PM.
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Old 09-21-2010, 09:20 PM
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I've never used Malathion. I'm too afraid of it.
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Old 09-21-2010, 10:27 PM
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hahah Yeah, I usually go the organic route but I had to move unexpectedly (plants outside to inside) and thought I needed something more powerful.
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Old 09-21-2010, 11:18 PM
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malathion is a safe chemical when it's used according to the directions. I stopped using it eons ago because of the foul smell.

try imidacloprid products from Bayer. they are easily applied. it is best to apply it around dawn.

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Old 09-22-2010, 12:16 AM
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I've used Malathion, both as a spray and as a dunk, on a variety of epiphytes and I haven't had a problem with it, however, I make sure plants have been watered before spraying and I don't spray during the heat of the day. I usually use it at a concentration of 500mg/L (= 1ml/L of a 500g/L concentrate). It's not my first defense against pests; I only use it for outbreaks of scale, which is usually 4 treaments over 10 days, so I don't know what effect regular spraying would have.

Personally, malathion is not a pesticide that I use inside and when applying it in the greenhouses I use a mask and googles and leave the area to air a few hours before going back in. If you feel the need to spray a plant prophylactically before bringing it inside, pyrethrum or imidacloprid would be better, low toxicity choices for you to consider. Be careful with pyrethrum around cats, though.
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Old 09-22-2010, 01:33 AM
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i have used malathion also, with no undesired results other than the smell...but i take the plants outside of the house to spray, and let them air out before bringing them back in the house....i think if you spray in high temps you are taking a risk with any chemical...that could have been your problem....

on the note of your oncidium....there is a condition that most oncidiums get which causes the spotting on the leaves....it is pretty 'normal' with a lot of them particularly the sharry babys.....so i dont think i would toss it out if thats the only problem with the plant...hi light tends to bring spotting.....
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Old 09-22-2010, 09:46 AM
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I have used malathion in the past with no problems. I only use it if I can move the plants outside to spray them. The plants do not come back in to the house until they are completely dry. Also I use rubber gloves when handling them. When used in the greenhouse I wear a mask and turn on the exhaust fan to clear out the odor.
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Old 09-22-2010, 10:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krpot View Post

I guess, this morning right before leaving for work I kicked over the malathion bottle and currently the fumes in my apartment are so bad I can't go in without getting a headache. I'm sitting in my parking lot on my laptop writing this until my apartment airs out. lol
I hope, hope, hope you don't have any pets in your apartment!
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Old 09-22-2010, 01:10 PM
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Thank you all. Because most of my plants are inside, no more malathion for me. Next time I'll look for pyrethrum or imidacloprid or physan 20.

Thank you dounoharm! I had no idea. YAY! I get to keep my oncidium!!

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Old 09-22-2010, 02:34 PM
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krpot - pyrethrum or imidacloprid should not be used like that inside either. And physan is a fungicide, does nothing for bugs.

Please make sure whenever you are working with pesticides, you take the proper safety precautions. Read the labels. Follow the instructions. And be aware that pesticides work for a reason, they are poison. That is their only purpose.

And please never leave a bottle of any chemical without the top securely replaced every time. When I'm mixing up pesticides (or even regular bleach) even though I know I'm going to need it again in 10 min, I still put the lid back on securely each time. Even when I'm spraying outside, I make sure I'm not standing downwind, and I take a shower immediately after every time just in case.

I don't mean to be mean, or seem like I'm "yelling" at you, but I also don't want you to end up hurt or sick.
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Old 09-22-2010, 03:04 PM
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yeah, i've only ever used malathion outside on outside plants.

(and i rescrew the tops of even fertilizer bottles in between measures for the watering cans--the stuff's expensive to spill all over the floor! )
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Old 09-22-2010, 03:05 PM
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Everyone should learn the uses of each of the chemicals commonly sold.

Malathion is an insecticide. It is a contact killer not systemic. It would have no effect on your problem.

It is good for white flies, mealy bugs and other small insects. It will have no effect on fungus or bacteria. I do not use it very often, I prefer organic solutions, but always found it harmless to orchids.

The symptoms you describe are classic symptoms for Pseudomonus catteyae or Erwinia cypripedii - bacterial brown spot on Phalaenopsis.

Physan will work on this if caught early. Commercially we destroy the plants rather than try to save them.

rcb
Physan says it is a fungicide on the label but it is not. It does not work on fungus. It is an algaecide, actually the same algaecide you use to shock your swimming pool.
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Old 09-22-2010, 03:40 PM
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It is an algaecide, actually the same algaecide you use to shock your swimming pool.
You are correct - sorry!
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Old 09-22-2010, 04:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcb View Post
krpot - pyrethrum or imidacloprid should not be used like that inside either. And physan is a fungicide, does nothing for bugs.

Please make sure whenever you are working with pesticides, you take the proper safety precautions. Read the labels. Follow the instructions. And be aware that pesticides work for a reason, they are poison. That is their only purpose.

And please never leave a bottle of any chemical without the top securely replaced every time. When I'm mixing up pesticides (or even regular bleach) even though I know I'm going to need it again in 10 min, I still put the lid back on securely each time. Even when I'm spraying outside, I make sure I'm not standing downwind, and I take a shower immediately after every time just in case.

I don't mean to be mean, or seem like I'm "yelling" at you, but I also don't want you to end up hurt or sick.

It's okay, constructive criticism I always appreciate. The Mal. bottle doesn't really have a secure option lol, it's kind of like a pill bottle cap in that way, so I placed it inside 2 ziplock baggies. I think I'll just take the alcohol/soap/cinnamon extract route next time then. Yeah, I called poison control (my mother told me to haha) and they said I needed to leave for the night while my apartment aired out, because I could get very sick just from being around the fumes, I guess.
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Old 09-22-2010, 04:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jerrymeola View Post
Everyone should learn the uses of each of the chemicals commonly sold.

Malathion is an insecticide. It is a contact killer not systemic. It would have no effect on your problem.

It is good for white flies, mealy bugs and other small insects. It will have no effect on fungus or bacteria. I do not use it very often, I prefer organic solutions, but always found it harmless to orchids.

The symptoms you describe are classic symptoms for Pseudomonus catteyae or Erwinia cypripedii - bacterial brown spot on Phalaenopsis.

Physan will work on this if caught early. Commercially we destroy the plants rather than try to save them.

rcb
Physan says it is a fungicide on the label but it is not. It does not work on fungus. It is an algaecide, actually the same algaecide you use to shock your swimming pool.

Really? There are no brown spots on my plants, though. But, I believe you. I have no idea where to get physan quickly. I know my Lowe's and Menards don't carry it.
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Old 09-22-2010, 06:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krpot View Post
Yeah, I called poison control (my mother told me to haha) and they said I needed to leave for the night while my apartment aired out, because I could get very sick just from being around the fumes, I guess.
So glad to hear this. Smart mom! And better to be safe.

But don't be afraid of pesticides. They can be used safely, just need to read the labels and follow the recommendations and the safety precautions.
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Old 09-22-2010, 06:19 PM
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Thanks, I found some physan 20 in town. Should I spray or soak for bacterial? At what dilution? There weren't instructions for brown spot/bacterial with it. I'm always confused when I'm told to spray an orchid with something because, I've always heard to avoid getting water in the crown or in the crotch of the leaves and that's exactly what happens when you spray.
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Old 09-22-2010, 09:02 PM
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Quote:
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From what I've gathered: to have a plant tested it costs 30-100 dollars and I spent ten on it.
$30-100 sounds crazy for virus testing. You can get virus testing for much cheaper than that. The last time I had plants virus tested in America it's cost me $5 per plant. See if anyone in your club does it.
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Old 09-23-2010, 05:47 PM
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Thank you. I messaged a couple hoosiers on here about that. Looks like Purdue University will do it for $11. So, that's much better. )

Looks like all of my phals are taking a bacterial turn for the worst :?? Hope this Physan 20 stuff works.
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Old 09-23-2010, 09:30 PM
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Exclamation picture heavy. Is there any hope?

Phal. #1

leaf one

leaf two

underside leaf two

base of plant


Phal. #2

greyish wrinkly leaf

lots of roots but the leaves are still turning grey and falling off

phal #3 Just noticed this one was like this today :/


Is this all bacterial?? What can I do?
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Old 09-24-2010, 06:42 AM
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I don't see any bacterial issues. The wrinkled leaves are typical symptoms of root loss or under watering.

Why did you use the malathion?

Brooke
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Old 09-24-2010, 01:18 PM
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Quote:
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$30-100 sounds crazy for virus testing. You can get virus testing for much cheaper than that. The last time I had plants virus tested in America it's cost me $5 per plant. See if anyone in your club does it.
krpot, If you wish to test for the most common orchid viruses, CymMV and ORSV, you can purchase these test strips
Agdia’s Easy-to-Use, On-Site ImmunoStrip Identifies Hard-to-Detect Cymbidium Mosaic and Odontoglossum Ringspot Viruses in Orchids
easily for, as kevin wrote, ~ $5@.

Agdia, Inc is the vendor. Agdia is located in ELKHART

Go to a local orchid club meeting. Surely, someone there is familiar with the product and will happily demonstrate the use for you!

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Old 09-24-2010, 03:07 PM
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Quote:
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I don't see any bacterial issues. The wrinkled leaves are typical symptoms of root loss or under watering.

Why did you use the malathion?

Brooke
Thank you. I used the Malathion when I needed to bring the plants inside. Lots of critters in/around the pots.
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Old 09-24-2010, 03:29 PM
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Quote:
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krpot, If you wish to test for the most common orchid viruses, CymMV and ORSV, you can purchase these test strips
Agdia’s Easy-to-Use, On-Site ImmunoStrip Identifies Hard-to-Detect Cymbidium Mosaic and Odontoglossum Ringspot Viruses in Orchids
easily for, as kevin wrote, ~ $5@.

Agdia, Inc is the vendor. Agdia is located in ELKHART

Go to a local orchid club meeting. Surely, someone there is familiar with the product and will happily demonstrate the use for you!

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Thank you for the info. I guess, it does break down to only $5 a test strip, but at a 25 strip minimum. I don't have $120 to spend on virus testing at the moment. My collection didn't cost that much total, but with the time spent taking care of them and such, it makes them worth more to me to an extent. lol. I really, don't suspect virus anymore, but will certainly keep Agdia in mind and maybe give em a call. It sure would be reassuring to test them all.
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Old 09-24-2010, 03:36 PM
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krpot, if you go to a local orchid club, you might (will probably) find other orchid growers who are willing to share the total cost....plus, the members will be willing to share more!

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Old 09-24-2010, 04:07 PM
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Yeah, I need to finally join the CIOS. haha
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Old 09-25-2010, 11:49 AM
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Plants dehydrated and perhaps the mix seems lare for the roots to grip with less moisture.
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Old 09-25-2010, 06:34 PM
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Hi. Plant leaves look extremely dehydrated and perhaps the mix seems to be too dry
When using bark in a mix make sure it has been soaked for at least 2 - 3 days so it retains its moisturre
One dry it is very difficult to rewet in a pot with a plant in it. They water just runs straight through the mix
I would repot it into some other mix you may like too use.
If its roots are ok on repotting give it a good feed for a couple of weeks with an organic fertilizer like seasol etc. Even over the leaves early in the morning will do it the world of good.
keep the potting medium moist in warm weather if possible
I found many years ago Malathion can be quiet photo toxic to some plants, ie reacts with sunlight and can cause sunburn!
A product I never now use, I value what is left of my life span
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Old 09-26-2010, 07:09 AM
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Quote:
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I found many years ago Malathion can be quiet photo toxic to some plants, ie reacts with sunlight and can cause sunburn!

Ron
Ron, This is a crucial point in the use of MALATHION. It is known to those GEEKS who read all of the fine print on the voluminous directions.

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Old 09-26-2010, 04:28 PM
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Quote:
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Hi. Plant leaves look extremely dehydrated and perhaps the mix seems to be too dry
When using bark in a mix make sure it has been soaked for at least 2 - 3 days so it retains its moisturre
One dry it is very difficult to rewet in a pot with a plant in it. They water just runs straight through the mix
I would repot it into some other mix you may like too use.
If its roots are ok on repotting give it a good feed for a couple of weeks with an organic fertilizer like seasol etc. Even over the leaves early in the morning will do it the world of good.
keep the potting medium moist in warm weather if possible
I found many years ago Malathion can be quiet photo toxic to some plants, ie reacts with sunlight and can cause sunburn!
A product I never now use, I value what is left of my life span
Good Growing
Ron
I've been growing them under lights since Aug. (when I malathion-ed) and I noticed the leaves were turning extremely dark purple on the undersides. I thought that was a sign of sunburn or at least high light levels, which didn't make any sense because the fixtures only give out 500-1000 fc, which is on the very low side.

I was soaking them to water them, but I have since moved them indoors in Aug. started to take them to the sink and run water through them and fert. I guess soaking them was working much better. I read that if you can't soak the entire pot it's important to water thoroughly then water again in 30 minutes because it takes that long for the bark's ''pores'' to open or something. I put some Styrofoam peanuts in the bottom of a couple pots that I believed weren't getting enough drainage/air and that made soaking the pots impossible because all the medium just floated out. I think I'll take the peanuts out and look for some lava rocks or something to use instead for better drainage/airflow.
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Old 10-02-2010, 08:29 AM
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Malthion is too strong for orchids and smelly,I use for shrubs and garden once a year close all doors.
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