I have a specimen Epidendrum that was recently re-potted from a cast iron pot into seven smaller pots. When will they bloom again? Lindy W.
Epidendrums are unusual orchids in that they produce clusters of tiny red, orange, or yellow flowers at the top of long pseudo-bulbs. The foliage can reach 3 feet tall, often sprout keikis (or baby plants), and take nearly full sun. A heavy cast iron pot is not the typical orchid container but it helps to illustrate the adaptability of these tropical plants.
Anytime a large plant is split into many pieces, it takes several years to recover since the roots are completely broken apart and all new roots must be made. The seven pieces were likely 4 or 5 bulb ‘divisions’ and will make one new growth a year. Patience is required since the estimated bloom time will be winter of 2012.
Most of my buds open except the tiniest on the very end. Occasionally, all the buds fall off even though the plant is sitting with the others. Are some orchids more sensitive than others? Nancy L.
The winter is a challenging time for orchid buds. It’s difficult to keep the humidity high, avoid cold drafts, and maintain uniform watering over the several months of bud development. Losing a tiny bud or two on the very end is not bad!
If all the buds fall off one plant but not others, then there is most likely something wrong with that particular orchid. It could be a ‘weak’ plant and have a poor root system, limp foliage, etc and be in need of rehabilitation. It could also be a ‘sensitive’ plant in which case the bud blast would occur every year. Repeat offenders should probably be discarded unless there is sentimental value.
I have a huge Phalaenopsis that has 9 leaves and two stalks in full bloom. Within the last month, the leaves have turned rubbery like it is dry. I did find excess water in the container and dumped that. What is happening? Catherine W.
It seems ironic that orchid roots sitting in water cant use the water! Epiphytic plants require air movement and roots rot quickly when submerged in water. Leaves start to get droopy and no amount of fertilizer will improve the situation.
The only remedy is to cut off the flowers and repot the plant. (Blooms will last at least a week in a vase).This poor orchid needs a chance to recover! Re-potting involves removing the dead roots and using the smallest pot possible. Its likely that this plant, despite its large leaves, may ultimately reside in a three to four inch pot.