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Forced Phal oddity

Posted by boothbay 7 (My Page) on
Sat, Dec 15, 12 at 17:41

At the least, its odd for me, 7 weeks ago i cut both spikes. Only one has shown new growth, not the other one at all...BUT, here is where the oddity comes in, a new spike is coming up from the base. Now, is this usual when one 'forces' a Phal? Does it mean that I may eventually get 3 spikes, if the other dormant one kicks in?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Forced Phal oddity

The new spike is probably forming because of the cool down in your conditions.

If i am at an orchid show sales table i give two different sets of advice.

Advice set 1 to people who are buying a hybrid phalaenopsis as a cheap bunch of flowers. "Cut down to a node".

Advice set 2 to people who might turn out to be long term orchid growers. Cut the stem off at the base when the flowers die so the plant can put energy into growing new leaves.

Consider the Phalaenopsis in the display below. This is the last orchid show of the year here. The Phals were all grown by the one Specialist Phal. grower and had been to two or three other orchid societies shows. He takes them home and goes
SNIP at the base so that they will bloom again for the 1913 show season.
Strathfield Plaza Spring show 2012


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

You aren't forcing the Phal to do anything, it is doing what it is genetically capable of doing. Cutting off the spike to have it "concentrate" on growing roots and new leaves is an internet fable. Orchids don't think, if the conditions are suitable, they do what they are programed to do.

If your Phal has the genetic background to hold spikes from year to year, yes you can get 3-4 or more spikes per plant. These Phals usually have a high dose of summer and fall bloomers in them.

If your Phal does not have the background to carry spikes, then it won't matter what you do, when finished the spike will turn brown and die. These Phals usually have a high dose of winter and spring bloomers.

I learned a long time ago you can't put every Phal into the same box, just like brothers and sisters, they are all different.

Brooke


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Glad to read your opinion, Brooke. I have about 7 phals, but the last one I bought (at half price!) is extremely floriferous, doesn't want to stop blooming. It had 3 loaded spikes when I got it, and after cutting the main branch, it produced 3 more spikes with buds, plus a brand new one. I somehow broke that new one off, much to my dismay, but now it's branching off the stub. The flowers are huge white beauties. The other phals just do their normal once-a-year bloom.


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Hard to say if anything is a fable unless you run a trial, which i am not about to do seeing i have nine Phalaenopsis.
The last Phal. to bloom went to an orchid show and was benched at two monthly orchid society meetings before i said "thank you" and cut the spike off at the base.
Here is a picture of a rebloomed spike.
Phalaenopsis Unknown


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Arthur I have about 300 Phals if I count all the seedlings I'm growing from flask. I have 55 species plus, last count, 175, mostly primary hybrids.

I know which species produce spikes that are classified as winter or spring bloomers and which produce spikes that start blooming in late spring, through summer and into the fall.

I can't get a winter bloomer to spike in the heat of summer. I can't get a summer bloomer to spike in the winter because the temps are too cool. The Phals which hold their spikes will bloom from those spikes for years and grow new spikes each year. If you are cutting off spikes that produce blooms multiple years, then you are depriving yourself of the beauty they want to give you. If you have a Phal. you don't think is strong enough to produce blooms, pinch the bloom off but leave the spike.

The first hybridizing was done with the winter bloomers because the ones that hold their spikes were rare. Now they are more common and have been used to increase the ability for Phals to do more than bloom and have the spike dry up.

Phal. schilleriana 'Highjack' AM/AOS - This is a typical winter blooming Phal where the spike dies after bloom.

Phal schilleriana 'Highjack' AM-AOS LUR_5704

This is Phal. Princess Kaiulani 'Highjack' CCM/AOS - As you can see this has multiple spikes from previous years plus grows new ones each year.

Phal Princess Kaiulani 'Highjack

I haven't run "trials" but I've been growing Phals for quite a while with a highly varied collection and understand the common thought of cutting off a spike for an orchid to concentrate on something is a fable. The genetics, coupled with the cultural conditions to make it happy control what it is able to do.

This is Phal. lowii 'Highjack' HCC/CCM/AOS

Phal lowii 'Highjack' HCC-CCM-AOS  JCL_0398

This is the perfect Phal. for you Arthur because it goes deciduous every winter, loves the cooler temps and doesn't need anything for several months.

Brooke


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

I should have said that i was discussing run of the mill hybrid Phalaenopsis, not species, not primary hybrids and not sequential bloomers.

You have to wonder what the survival rate is of all the Phals listed in posts here over the years. Probably something like the just concluded Phal growing competition at the local orchid society where most of the 40 Phals i handed out a year ago are dead.

So I am writing as a battling Phal grower of many years duration and I stand by what i said (In the absence of trials) That the spikes should be cut off at the base so the plant can put energy into growing new leaves.


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

I'm glad you stand by your suggestion to cut the spikes off but over here we are getting more up to date hybrids. They are being mass produced now and are available in big box stores, sometimes with a name, sometimes without a name.

It has nothing to do with only growing species, primary hybrids and sequential bloomers it has to do with every orchid you currently own came down from just a couple different species. If the hybrids you have all start spiking in the fall then yours are down from the most commonly used species at the beginning of hybridizing.

I am a member of another forum with several Aussie members who moan about the lack of variety and even the lack of available species. A couple of them are importing flasks and adding variety the long hard way of growing them to maturity.

The original poster, Boothbay, is describing a newer hybrid that insists it wants to have multiple spikes at one time. This would be one of the new hybrids available from the mass market. He is assuming his Phal has been "forced" to bloom out of season when it is actually doing what it has been bred to do.

Since you stand by cutting the spike off to grow new leaves, what do you do when you have Phals spiking, growing new leaves and roots at the same time? I call it genetically predisposed to do everything at one time.

Brooke


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Brooke, you should be congratulated on your beautiful plants and your expertise as a grower. However, the average windowsill Phal can not be grown under your greenhouse conditions nor with your creative talents.

I have grown a few sequential bloomers and wind up removing the spike for cosmetic reasons. There is nothing uglier than a staked spike with one, scrawny flower on the end.

Whether it is healthier to cut the spike, I don't know. But, because I only grow Phals for 'decoration' I cut the spike before it even finishes flowering.

Your plants are beatifully displayed but that would be impossible for me and I think most novice growers. If the plant is hung, it is possible, but most of us have them on tables or windows.

I love the look of large Phals with full spikes.

Jane


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

We seem to got off the track here a bit....if you look at the picture that i posted
way up above of the reflowered, reflowered Phal. you will see what I'm on about, not a thing of beauty!
If you took it to an orchid meeting the judges would still look at it , though it wouldn't get any Kudos for "habit and arrangement".
Although, I only have nine Phals (out of a thousand or so orchids) I still like them. Now the reflowered Phal. ended up like that because of advice from various sources that you would get more flowers....a big deal if you are a raw newbie, if you did the snip to a node. So I deliberately did the cut, did the cut.
Yuk result!
As for putting more energy into producing new leaves. It certainly applies here, in this room, where it is currently 28C. with 68% humidity. Come winter, the humidity and temperature will be mostly around the 30 to 40% mark with temps around 18C.


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Jane I thank you for the compliment but as far as expertise, the success of any orchid or plant grower, is trying to give it what it needs.

No where did I say to keep one of the long spike type Phals like you and Arthur grow, and keep one lone flower sitting on top of a long staked spike. No where. I was talking about the new hybrids available which is the type Boothbay has now. I tried to give an overview of the history of what makes the one type, yours and Arthurs, as opposed to where the newer multi-spiked Phals originate. Obviously neither of you know about them or wish to have them. I don't own anymore of the long spiked Phals except two species because I don't like them. The complex hybrids I do grow are the shorter spikes with waxy blooms and most are fragrant.

I also used a potted Phal to show the type I was talking about so everyone could see multiple spikes in bloom. This type will never grow a spike like yours because eventually they will die from old age but it will take years to get there. This is also a Phal where if you give it the temp differential in the fall will. never. spike. in. the. winter. It needs the warm up in the spring to make it bloom in the summer.

It is also possible a windowsill grower or even better, someone who grows under lights can and do achieve the same type growth I get in the g/h. I started in a window, graduated to growing under lights before the g/h ever appeared on the property.

Arthur I told you 8 years ago the picture you showed was ugly and it still is. I'm glad you cut it off.

I too grow over 1000 orchids ranging from low light to high light plants. Around here in the winter we get more gray ugly days than sunny days and the humidity is all over the place. You have more humidity in your house than I have today in the g/h with the sun shining and the vent fan running.

I stand by my original statement in my first post -

"I learned a long time ago you can't put every Phal into the same box, just like brothers and sisters, they are all different."

Enjoy your Phals - I love mine and every other orchid in the g/h.

Brooke


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Hi Brooke,

FYI, I think the orginal poster cut his spikes to the 3rd node type thing and then hoped for a side branch to form (like in Arthur's pic), not that the orignal producer tried forcing it to bloom out of season. Again, that's how I read the OP original post...

As far as the newer hybrids keeping their spikes, anything with violacea or bellina should never have a live spike cut in my opinion. I have a mounted violacea alba that has multiple 1-5 year-old spikes with no blooms right now, they're still very green but a little 'ugly'. In a few months it will produce another spike or two and all will start forming buds on the ends. Pretty impressive even with only 1-3 flowers open per spike.

BTW: Isn't your yellow stuartiana a one time seasonal bloomer? If you tire of it, you can always send it up my way you know ;-)

Bob


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

The yellow is a one time seasonal bloomer as is my white version. I never said I don't like the seasonal bloomers because I do but nice try :>) If I get lucky and it produces a stem keiki I will keep your very generous offer in mind. I have many other species that are seasonal bloomers but their spikes don't get two or more feet long. Currently my schilleriana has a 4' spike, and still growing :>(

There are other Phals who hold spikes and bloom multiple times a year. Any yellow hybrid has to come down through either fasciata or amboinensis. Both hold their shorter spikes for years and the ambo will bloom multiple times a year. The fasciata only blooms once a year starting mid to late summer.

If you want an entertaining but very easy to grow species get a tetraspis. Beautiful white blooms and it blooms several times a year regardless of the season.

Here is what I interpreted to mean it was growing a totally new spike and he feared the trimming of the old was forcing it to do something unusual -

"here is where the oddity comes in, a new spike is coming up from the base."

Maybe I am misinterpreting what he said but always saying you must cut off a spike is only true some of the time.

Brooke


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

"Arthur I told you 8 years ago the picture you showed was ugly and it still is. I'm glad you cut it off."

Of course it was ugly, that is why i pruned the spike a a few times to produce it and still produce the pic. from time to time.

AND
" I tried to give an overview of the history of what makes the one type, yours and Arthurs, as opposed to where the newer multi-spiked Phals originate. Obviously neither of you know about them or wish to have them. I don't own anymore of the long spiked Phals except two species because I don't like them. The complex hybrids I do grow are the shorter spikes with waxy blooms and most are fragrant."

This is absolute imperious twaddle!

The OP didn't name his plant so i suppose he posted on another forum otherwise how do you know what type it is?

There is nothing wrong with those large phals with cascading spikes except that I do not have room for them. Sorry, i am not into Phals in great detail but there is a trend for smaller flowered types so as benching marshal at the local orchid society I introduced a Class Size for flowers less than 75mm width.


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Imperious twaddle - Really?

I'm sorry, I don't know Boothbay except from reading here on the GW. I didn't insult you, I did try to explain the difference in the available Phals over here now as compared to what you are currently growing.

I never said there was anything wrong with your Phals. Just because I don't like the tall spikes and thin textured blooms is not an insult to you or anyone who does love them. You are seeing insults where none was intended. Differing opinions is not an insult.

You probably wouldn't grow this tiny little thing with the blooms hiding under the leaves but I don't care because I do and I wouldn't be insulted if you hated it. God made thousands of orchids for everyone to find something they love.

Phal. appendiculata 'Highjack' AM/AOS

Phal appendiculata 'Highjack' AM-AOS  JCL_0366

Brooke


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

I think the OP was talking about a common, hybrid Phal. That was how I read the post. I always tell people to cut the spike off. Nothing uglier than reblooming on old, 2ft long spikes.

Because the OP did not return, we don't know for sure, but I would bet he was a novice grower talking about the common Phal.

Jane


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

OP ( Boothbay here ) guilty as charged..LOL I did not mean to start a war, he he...Yes, Jane, I am an orchid novice. What I bought a year ago at Home Depot, I have no idea what type of a Phal it is. I was tempted to try at least once to cut a spike above a node to see if I would be lucky. I had 2 spikes, and had each one cut down to about 2 nodes. After about 7 weeks one of them started to show new growth above that node..the other, so far nothing. Then a couple of days later just checking on my new growth is when I discovered a new spike coming up from the base..still nothing from the other spike. Now, I do not know if this is one of those hybrids that was mentioned here by Highjack...I hope it is.


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

No war at all. Your Phal will look much better if you remove the old spikes and let the new one develop. If you look at Arthurs photo, that gives you an idea what will happen if that old spike continues to grow.

Best thing to do is to cut both old spikes. Use a stake to carefully train the new spike to grow straight upward. Put a mark on the front of the pot facing the light. The buds will develop toward the light. Don't change the position of the pot and you'll get a nice, flowering spike. If you are lucky, you might get a second one.

Your Phal is not the type Brooke is growing. It is the Phal in Arthurs photo.

Good luck and enjoy!
Jane


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Here is a picture of a sequential bloomer that was in my collection for many years before i had a fatal dabble with CHC. About three tiny flowers on the end of a raceme. Bred by one of the locals and not the type of orchid to be found at a mass outlet.
Doritis pulcherrima x Phalaenopsis decumbens
Doritis pulcherrima x Phalaenopsis decumbens. After allowing for name changes, registered name is probably Phal. Anna-Larati Soekardi


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Boothbay we don't know what you are growing but the suggestion to always cut off the spikes yearly does not fit all Phals. The type of Phal I was referring to are now available from many sources. It is a big wide wonderful world of Phals besides the white, the pink, the magenta and the spotted one. You can have Phals in bloom every month of the year, in many colors and many sizes.

Arthur I didn't realize Mr. Kokopaking was an Australian. The Anna-Larati Soekardi was registered in 1980 but shows the parentage to be pulcherrima x parishii, not the deliciosa (decumbens). Your picture does look like it resembles the deliciosa more than showing the parishii influence. Parishii does not carry spikes over year after year so maybe your orchid had another name?

Here is my deliciosa and you can see it is a bud builder.

Phal deliciosa LUR_5908

Most parishii offspring carry the dominate dark lip.

Phal parishii LUR_5905

The Anna-Larati Soekardi has been available stateside to the mass market for five or six years now. Meola carried them when they became available and he was only a distributor of mass market Phals.

Brooke


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Brooke, here is the entry from the RHS Plant list. The raft of name changes has caused a lot of confusion. Plant not the best one to flower. I saw others that were much better. Purchased from a local breeder not Mr. Kokopaking.

Phalaenopsis decumbens (Griff.) Holttum, Gard. Bull. Singapore 11: 286 (1947).
This name is a synonym.

Accepted Name: Phalaenopsis parishii Rchb.f., Bot. Zeitung (Berlin) 23: 146 (1865).


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

Highjack, how does one know the differences in Phals as you mentioned? I buy mine at Lowe's and/or Home Depot. As you probably aware of, the 'help' in both of those stores are limited.


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RE: Forced Phal oddity

I visit Home Depot and Lowes often as we have been doing work on our home. The only Phals I have ever seen are the noid, standard hybrids.

Jane


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