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Old 05-07-2014, 09:03 PM
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Mold on phal roots? Can it be saved?

Hello ya'll,

My phal had mealybugs so I removed it from its potting and disinfected it with a Physan20 spray solution.

When I removed the medium I noticed white stuff on the roots. It looks like mold to me, but I'm not really sure if thats what it is.

I attached some pics. I'd be thankful for advise if this orchid can be saved (and if so, how?) or if it's too late. The ends of the roots look healthy so I thought there could be a chance.

Thank you in advance!

Christian
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rps20140507_174048.jpg   rps20140507_175034.jpg   rps20140507_175121.jpg   rps20140507_175149.jpg  
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Old 05-08-2014, 11:03 AM
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No idea, but this might help

I think your phal looks just fine, I'm not quite sure whether it has a plague, but this document might help you, another member passed it to me: http://www.houstonorchidsociety.org/...ySueBottom.pdf
I'd suggest to watch carefully the plant's progress, and if the white areas spread, then cut the damaged parts. It seems to have enough roots to keep surviving if you intervene on time, but I hope some other members have opinions about this. I am still a newbie
Good luck!
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christian (05-09-2014)
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Old 05-08-2014, 04:08 PM
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I have seen these sorts of little hairs on many of my phals. I think it's just a mechanism the plant uses to stick to stuff. I've especially noticed the hairs when the roots are against something smooth, like a pebble, or when it's crawling across the lid of the pots... I've also had these hairs on the roots that grew out the bottom of the pot. They hold onto some pebbles so well that they can break the root if I don't pry off the pebble first.

I think your plant is fine. Anyway, so long as the root is firm and nice and white or green, and the plant is growing... what's the problemo?

You're plant is pitted man. All good.
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christian (05-09-2014)
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Old 05-08-2014, 04:20 PM
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It is hard to tell from the photos, but the white stuff could be the "fluff" that mealies tend to secrete and surround themselves with.

I am just wondering, why did you treat an insect problem with Physan 20? Physan 20 is not an insecticide. A solution of Physan probably does only what any other solution might do; help you wash the bugs off. But there are almost always tiny mealy bugs hiding in the nooks and crannies you can't wash (and they will come back).

You need to treat with an appropriate chemical (if it were me, I would use a systemic insecticide, such as imidacloprid; there are "organic" options as well, such as neem-based products, if that is your preference).
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Old 05-08-2014, 04:43 PM
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Probably not mold if you treated it with Physan 20 and are still having problems with it.

But I agree with Catt, for a insect infestation, I'd go with imidicloprid like Bayer rose and flower insect killer.
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Old 05-08-2014, 05:24 PM
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I agree with Superpitted that the roots look fine. I too have gotten those little "hairs" on the roots of a Phal, and they do not seem to be doing any harm.
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Old 05-09-2014, 06:59 AM
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agree with Catt mandu that physan 20 will work for molds. i tried enlarging the last pic, might be mold.
here is two things that i used....

clorox solution, dilution 1:30
or
quarternary ammonium chloride compound 1:500

either one of the solution, immerse entire plant in the solution, do a few rinses, leave it to stand for half hour, then wash thoroughly, especially with the clorox.
phal tolerated very well to these dilution, had done it couple of times.
i treat new comers with the same method as disinfection.
good luck
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Old 05-09-2014, 07:32 AM
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If you don't have any insecticide handy...the plant is already out of pot and hanging free so you can simply suds it up w/some mild dish soap and then let it soak in that soapy water for awhile. After that rinse it well and you'll probably knock out the problem.

Washing the plant and roots w/a soapy mixture will kill the adults as well as wash off any eggs. Your biggest issue might come from any plants that were near this one as mealies can spread throughout a collection pretty quickly.

If you had a heavy infestation (more than just this one plant) then a systemic insecticide is probably your quickest and easiest solution. Most big box stores carry a variety of products that would do the job very well.
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Old 05-09-2014, 08:48 PM
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The roots look great! I really don't see anything wrong with them. The growing tips indicate healthy, growing roots. As for the fuzzy ones, if it is mold, a little air exposure should do the trick in killing it.
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Old 07-08-2014, 07:24 PM
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I'm not certain how much help I can be here, but I'll throw something out there. We grow 100% organic and in Central Florida, its tricky at times. This is the land of humidity, mold, and insects the size of VW Beatles. But for the last two years we've used Neem oil w/ a little Dawn dish soap....and knock on wood...nada for fungus or rot. Also controls the nasty critters that nibble without hurting the lizards, dragonflies, spiders, ladybugs, preying mantis, frogs, (ok, I think you get the idea!) that are regulars in the greenhouses. Also, I think the bi-monthly drenching of worm tea w/ volcanic rock dust 'milk' keeps all that down to a dull roar. BUT....that's what works for us.
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Old 07-11-2014, 07:44 AM
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The roots look great! Not mould and to my eye not meally bug fluff.

It's just normal for roots to have white hairs that it uses to grip the bark it grows on, it looks thicker the healthier the root is. My view is that you are wasting your time if you try and treat it, it's just a healthy root.
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