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Thread: New heli... sad looking. Any tips?

  1. #25
    mobile's Avatar
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    Wow, that's gone downhill fast. In the previous pics it looked like it stood a good chance of recovery, but I'm not so sure now. I would certainly be isolating it from the other plants if I were you. The medium looks a little unusual, is this your normal mix, as the plants in the background look healthy enough? Looks like there is bark chip in it, any chance that there could be a fungal issue with that?

  2. #26
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    jb,

    Id get it away from the other plants.... and like the others Im curious as to what your mix is. Maybe just the images but it looks very unusual and decayed (other then this current issue)

    I would recommend a more conventional mix.

    Did you use the granular or the flowable?

    I had a similar occurance with a ceph years ago, dont know what caused it and it knock on wood hasnt happened since. But it looked identical to what you have. Whatever it is, it's wicked.

    get it out of there

  3. #27
    stretch.... yawn... jbradt's Avatar
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    I quarantined it as soon as I saw what was going on. At least I did that right... lol. It''s the same media mix that I usually use, but I did use a different brand of peat. It was a little darker than the type I usually use, but I didn't really think much of it. I guess I won't be using that brand again...

    I'll have to check on the type of trichoderma, I think it was the flowable; but I'll have to check to be sure.

    @ mobile. I use orchid bark chips in most of my media mixes. It's the same type I usually use, and I've never had an issue like this before.

    @jeff2. At this point it looks like the whole plant is involved. If I took off the affected material, there would be nothing left.

    I can't believe how bad my luck has been with this plant.
    Indeed. Most indeededly. Phillip J. Frye


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  4. #28
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    Jb,

    When it happened to my ceph it was with the same mix, same rack, same trich, same ferts.... yet it was the only one to get this. I assume your situation is similar.

    I have no idea, I dumped it... and knock on wood Ive not had it before or since but man did it grow super fast and took over the whole pot and plant.

    No explanations... it is like nothing Ive seen before or since.

  5. #29
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    I have seen this sort of thing before also,
    and concur with others. The media seems to have been kept so moist that it is growing fungus on it. Whether it is the Trichoderma is another question however. I have some pots where the tricho is growing on the surface, which looks gross & repels water a bit from the webbing", but does no other harm (yet).
    When using tricho, perhaps make a small depression & pour into that, to prevent spreading "spores/growth" on the surface. (Flowable is fine powder, other is granular... easy to tell.)

    At first thought I would say that from the look of what you have, it appears that the media is kept too moist & hence growing "bad fungus", HOWEVER, after looking closer, I would have to admit that I can't make that assumption so easily! It does also look a bit like what I have seen when the Tricho starts growing on the surface, but only when I have drenched the entire surface or poured granular type on the top of a pot instead of mixing it in toward the bottom/middle of the media. Since the plant is doing poorly, I would guess it isn't tricho.

    I am curious to know what your set-up looks like. These are not "swamp plants" & don't need to get/be soaking wet. I do know that people's first reaction when a plant is doing poorly, is always to water it more! But that is often the worst thing to do!
    If through watering or humidity they stay too wet, fungus like this will also take hold on the media. And a LOT depends on your media... what kind of wood chips did you use? If you used them before then they aren't a likely culprit, but as you say, the peat didn't look right. Although peat can look darker when it is damp, so I can't know what you were seeing.

    In years past, I have even had dead LFS get like that when conditions were poor or when part of the mixture caused fungus that took hold on other things like the LFS. Unless it is the tricho growing, it is definitely a sign of bad material or bad conditions.

    As you are the grower, only you can figure out what the situation is & what conditions may be causing this. Above all, since you may have a replacement coming, you should figure out what to do before you have a similar situation with your new plant.
    While it may be healthy coming in this next time, the conditions you grow it in will be what determines its ultimate success.
    As you know these are not beginner plants, and so the necessary "tweaks" in environment may be very small or very hard to create for them. Sometimes a little bit off can be enough to spell disaster...

    Good Luck! Many of us have been where you are with this, and it is all a part of learning what to do & how to do it.
    Last edited by GrowinOld; 10-17-2011 at 10:25 AM.
    Experience is the best teacher. At least it used to be.
    But then, common sense isn't so common anymore, is it.


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  6. #30
    stretch.... yawn... jbradt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Av8tor1 View Post
    Jb,

    When it happened to my ceph it was with the same mix, same rack, same trich, same ferts.... yet it was the only one to get this. I assume your situation is similar.

    I have no idea, I dumped it... and knock on wood Ive not had it before or since but man did it grow super fast and took over the whole pot and plant.

    No explanations... it is like nothing Ive seen before or since.
    Strange. Maybe it was mislabeled. Not a heli minor, but a heli "twilight zone"? lol

    Quote Originally Posted by GrowinOld View Post
    I have seen this sort of thing before also,
    and concur with others. The media seems to have been kept so moist that it is growing fungus on it. Whether it is the Trichoderma is another question however. I have some pots where the tricho is growing on the surface, which looks gross & repels water a bit from the webbing", but does no other harm (yet).
    When using tricho, perhaps make a small depression & pour into that, to prevent spreading "spores/growth" on the surface.
    At first thought I would say that from the look of what you have, it appears that the media is kept too moist & hence growing "bad fungus", HOWEVER, after looking closer, I would have to admit that I can't make that assumption! It does also look a bit like what I have seen when the Tricho starts growing on the surface, but only when I have drenched the entire surface or poured granular type on the top of a pot instead of mixing it in toward the bottom/middle of the media.

    I am curious to know what your set-up looks like. These are not "swamp plants" & don't need to get soaking wet. If through watering or humidity they stay too wet, fungus like this will also take hold on the media. And a LOT depends on your media... what kind of wood chips did you use? Are you sure they are what you think they are? (Sometimes for "mulch" they will sell combination's or you can get other woods mixed in, which can "rot" very quickly.)
    And in years past, I have even had dead LFS get like that when conditions were poor or when part of the mixture caused fungus that took hold on other things like the LFS.
    As you are the grower, only you can figure out what the situation is & what conditions may be causing this. Above all, since you may have a replacement coming, you should figure out what to do before you have a similar situation with your new plant.
    While it may be healthy coming in this next time, the conditions you grow it in will be what determines its ultimate success.
    As you know these are not beginner plants, and so the necessary "tweaks" in environment may be very small or very hard to create for them. Sometimes a little bit off can be enough to spell disaster...

    Good Luck! Many of us have been where you are with this, and it is all a part of learning what to do & how to do it.
    I definitely appreciate this input. And it makes some sense that it may have been too wet. In my repotting attempt, I may have over wetted the media. I don't have any pics of the set up off hand, but it's basically an upright exo-terra terraruim. In the bottom is a layer of egg crate (the type used as light dampeners on flourescent bulbs) with a layer of sphagnum on that. There is a fan for airflow and the top of the terrarium is mostly open to promote air exchange. The humidity is generally high 80's to low 90's during the day, temps in the mid 70's.
    My heterodoxa x minor has been growing well in these conditions for a bit over a year now, and my nutans has nearly doubled in size in the couple of months that I've had it.
    As for the orchid bark, I guess I can't say for sure that I know it's the same thing, but it's from the same company that I've always used, and there are no notable differences from this bag to the others that I've had in the past. In fact, I have some from the same bag in several other pots with no issues. The only real difference is that I used peat from a different company than I've used before.
    Indeed. Most indeededly. Phillip J. Frye


    My growlist.

  7. #31
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    most likely a combination of factors.... when it happened to me I suspected a uncommon phytopathogen

    It grew much much too fast to be the trich but may have been a predator of it's spores or feasting on the encapsulated food source (granular only)

    Since that occurance I recommend to others not to mix granular in with their substrate. But to only use it in the root zone or sprinkled on top.

    But like I said, it was a single occurance and I use trich every single month on all my plants with great results... so i dont know.

    Your substrate does look a little funky, but if its been working well for ya then meh....

    In cases like this we try to look for a variable that sets it apart from the rest of the group. If none can be found that one can only assume it came with the plant or a unique combination of factors.

    Wish I had a black and white answer for ya..

    Good advice from some good growers... Hope it helps,
    Butch
    Last edited by Av8tor1; 10-17-2011 at 03:52 PM.

  8. #32
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    I've never has much luck with orchid bark with my plants, it always seems to breakdown too fast. In fact, I repotted an Oncidium earlier today which was mainly in orchid bark and that bark had a distinctive smell of decomposition to it. I tend to avoid it nowadays, using LFS/perlite for Heliamphora. For fungal control I use one of two methods, which are not compatible with each other. For prevention I use I use Trichoderma, together with good lighting, ventilation and watering of course. If there is already an unwanted soil fungal infection I use a weak hydrogen peroxide solution, which kills the fungus including any Trichoderma. Hydrogen peroxide is not always successful, but it has worked for me a few times.
    Last edited by mobile; 10-17-2011 at 11:02 AM.

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