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Old 06-08-2009, 02:57 AM posted to rec.gardens.orchids
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Default What's going on with this phal?

One of my phals decided to freak out this year -- it flowered, but
very weakly, and then started growing a thin, spindly stem instead of
normal leaves.

I took a couple photos:
http://www.foolabs.com/tmp/orchid1.jpg
http://www.foolabs.com/tmp/orchid2.jpg

It's a Phal. venosa x Phal. Mount Mitchell, purchased from Odom's in
1999. It was doing great up until this year. I have three other
phals, growing in the exact same conditions (light, water,
fertilizer), and they're all doing fine.

What's wrong with this plant?

- Derek

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Old 06-08-2009, 03:08 PM posted to rec.gardens.orchids
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Default What's going on with this phal?

Hi, Derek.

Such an apical inflorescence is simply a genetic hiccup that sometimes
happens, and as far as I can tell, has absolutely nothing to do with
culture, so don't beat yourself up over this one.

Unfortunately, it suggests that the plant will no longer grow normally,
so is - ultimately - a "goner". With some luck, you will get a keiki or
two that you can grow normally (I love venosa crosses), or a new growth
from the base. You might consider some "hormone therapy" using
Keiki-Grow or Keiki Pro to encourage that.

In an unrelated matter, many of us have had our ISP's drop their NNTP
servers, so these newsgroups are no longer easily accessible, so we have
begun participation in a free mailing list instead. If you join, and
post your pictures and questions there, more folks might respond:
http://www.freelists.org/webpage/orchidphotos



Ray Barkalow - First Rays LLC - www.firstrays.com
Plants, Supplies, Equipment, Books, Artwork
Free Services & Lots of Info!

-----Original Message-----
From: Derek B. Noonburg ]
Posted At: Wednesday, August 05, 2009 8:57 PM
Posted To: rec.gardens.orchids
Conversation: What's going on with this phal?
Subject: What's going on with this phal?

One of my phals decided to freak out this year -- it flowered, but
very weakly, and then started growing a thin, spindly stem instead of
normal leaves.

I took a couple photos:
http://www.foolabs.com/tmp/orchid1.jpg
http://www.foolabs.com/tmp/orchid2.jpg

It's a Phal. venosa x Phal. Mount Mitchell, purchased from Odom's in
1999. It was doing great up until this year. I have three other
phals, growing in the exact same conditions (light, water,
fertilizer), and they're all doing fine.

What's wrong with this plant?

- Derek

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Old 14-08-2009, 12:22 AM posted to rec.gardens.orchids
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First recorded activity by GardenBanter: Oct 2008
Posts: 17
Default What's going on with this phal?

wow that is strange. Might have got hit with some kind of growth regulator.
2 4 D can cause some strange elongated growth. purely a guess though. it
looks almost like half flower spike half vegetative growth. It must have
evolved into a vine.(or not lol)
"Derek B. Noonburg" wrote in message
...
One of my phals decided to freak out this year -- it flowered, but
very weakly, and then started growing a thin, spindly stem instead of
normal leaves.

I took a couple photos:
http://www.foolabs.com/tmp/orchid1.jpg
http://www.foolabs.com/tmp/orchid2.jpg

It's a Phal. venosa x Phal. Mount Mitchell, purchased from Odom's in
1999. It was doing great up until this year. I have three other
phals, growing in the exact same conditions (light, water,
fertilizer), and they're all doing fine.

What's wrong with this plant?

- Derek



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Old 16-08-2009, 09:25 PM posted to rec.gardens.orchids
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Posts: 357
Default What's going on with this phal?


Here's my take on the situation.
1. Sometimes, a Phal will make a mistake and send up an inflorescence
from the center where only new leaves should emerge. That pretty much
ruins the plant, but if you just want to play around with it, Phals are
capable of making a vegetative growth from the side. "Nature will find a
way" (didn't they say that in Jurassic Park?). If you just keep growing
a plant that lost its growing point, it will find a way to grow from
some other point. (There are exceptions to this but Phals usually have
options.)
2. Sometimes when a plant really needs more light (including the need
for more leaf surfaces) what should be a flower spike will have leaves
on it. It may make only leaves and no flowers.

Congratulations! You have the only plant I have personally heard of that
did both at once!
You have to admit, the plant doesn't look too healthy. It has lost lower
leaves to the point that it has a bare trunk with only 2 leaves at the
top and one of those appears to be drying out.
Does it really have live roots down in the pot? Probably not very many.
It should have had roots growing at each level where there was a leaf.
Again, that short bare trunk seems to have no roots. Not a good sign.
If you can keep the plant alive and if you want to play around with it,
it would eventually start growing leaves, and then roots. They might
come from the side of the trunk but more likely from the leafy
inflorescence that it made (at which point we would call the new growth
a keiki).
The big "IF" is if you can keep it alive long enough to find out what it
might do. I would un-pot it, remove any dead roots, pull off the dry
leaf bases on the "trunk" and pot it in fresh medium, placing it lower
so that maybe new roots could emerge.

If you were growing plants for profit, this one would have hit the trash
can long ago. If you consider orchids your hobby and you like wasting
time with them, fine, waste some time on this one and see what happens.
It would make for some great before and after pictures if you save it!

Steve in the Adirondacks




Derek B. Noonburg wrote:
One of my phals decided to freak out this year -- it flowered, but
very weakly, and then started growing a thin, spindly stem instead of
normal leaves.

I took a couple photos:
http://www.foolabs.com/tmp/orchid1.jpg
http://www.foolabs.com/tmp/orchid2.jpg

It's a Phal. venosa x Phal. Mount Mitchell, purchased from Odom's in
1999. It was doing great up until this year. I have three other
phals, growing in the exact same conditions (light, water,
fertilizer), and they're all doing fine.

What's wrong with this plant?

- Derek



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