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Thread: Regarding a spent bloom

  1. #1

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    I purchased this orchid and several others about 3 weeks ago.



    This photo was taken this past weekend and as of today, the bloom is pretty much shriveled and well past its prime. Sheridan mentioned to me that he believed some species will bloom from the old flower spike. I believe this to be a Paph of some sort however I have no idea which cultivar it is. I do like it. Should I trim the stem to the base or should I leave it alone?

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    herenorthere's Avatar
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    Check the photo collection at Antec. There are a number of green & white species & hybrids, so you'll probably never know exactly what it is. But you should be able to narrow it down to the point to get a real good idea of what environment it'll prefer. I let slipper blooms & stems die back naturally and, as I mentioned for your other plant, I repot everything. Some will resent repotting, but those are rare.
    Bruce in CT

    Madness is something rare in individuals but in groups, parties, peoples, ages it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

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    The two orchids that I posted photos of were by far the most expensive and they came from the same nursery. I had the number to the nursery so I called them and asked what they were. The orchid above is Paph. Silver Fleuret 'Green Land' x Paph. Mystic Jewel 'In Charm'. I don't necessarily know if this helps but that's what it is. I merely purchased it because I really liked it. I had only one African Violet on my kitchen counter and one orchid in my master bathroom as house plants here and thought more orchids would be a welcome addition in that high humidity bathroom with all the indirect light.

    Both of these plants have already been repotted twice unfortunately. I bought these two the first day of vacation and set them out in our hotel room. I repacked them and stuck them on the next plane with us for an inter island flight which "allegedly" didn't require inspection of anything being shipped that had certificates. Well, the USDA ripped the crate open and basically tore the plants out of the pots to check the soil and tossed the mix. When we got to the next hotel room I discovered what they had done because they left a little tag that stated the box had been "inspected" by the USDA. When I looked in the box, they were bareroot. I had to call around and find a nursery where I could go and take the plants in to have them repotted.

    Then we took off for our next inter island flight only by then I had bought about 10 more orchids. All had certificates and all were packed properly. The USDA didn't bother the box this time but Homeland Security did. Anyway, I found the tape that stated Homeland Security had inspected the new crate and was aghast. What they did to the 10 newly purchased plants was unconscionable. I found all the sleeves slashed as well as the bottoms of the pots cut open with a utility knife. Some plants were uprooted and tossed back in the box haphazard. The planting medium was also tossed back in the box on top of those plants. The only two plants they hadn't messed with were the original two purchased as they were in mini self contained boxes within the crate. Two plants were so trashed I had to toss them. Several plants had all the blooms smashed and trashed. I wasn't familiar with orchids and this mess looked out of my league so our hotel sent a nurseryman from their greenhouses up to take care of it. He gently and tenderly repotted every orchid in a planting medium that looks to be bark, charcoal, and some sort of pumice in new little pots. He then watered them for about five minutes, drained them for an hour, and told me they were beat up pretty good but might make it. He came back up before we left and packed them all individually and then put them in a new wooden crate for me to take them home in and they made it back without being inspected.

    My advice to anyone who buys plants... ship them home direct from the nursery or there's going to be trouble and a lot of time and expense involved.

    I will leave the long stems on the plants and just let the blooms die back naturally with both of these plants. Thanks so much for telling me what to do with them. If any of these orchids ultimately survive the repeated manhandling, I will be in shock.

    What do you think of the potting medium used- bark, charcoal, and some sort of a pumice? Are these poor orchids destined to be repotted a third time?

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    herenorthere's Avatar
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    I'd leave them in that mix. Different Paphs can have very different cultural requirements, so you should either look for guidelines for that particular hybrid (hard to do) or track the hybrid back to the species included in it. It's much easier to find cultural requirements for individual species. You can track orchid hybrid genealogy at the RHS orchid hybrid search site. You might have to go back a couple or more generations. It's kind of an exercise in obsessiveness, but can be worthwhile.
    Bruce in CT

    Madness is something rare in individuals but in groups, parties, peoples, ages it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

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    herenorthere's Avatar
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    By the way, I completely forgot to say I hope your plants survive their experience. Most should, even if they've been set back temporarily. That kind of behavior is so wrong and, unfortunately, I think we have to expect more and more of it.
    Bruce in CT

    Madness is something rare in individuals but in groups, parties, peoples, ages it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

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    Yes, me too. I should have never purchased so many but they are not fragrant at all and therefore do not bother my allergies. I am sort of hoping they all make it however that is doubtful.

    I checked out your link and had to exit quick lest I start lusting for more. Very nice. So many gorgeous orchids.

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