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Phal throwing babies????

Posted by alys_esmond 9b Orlando (My Page) on
Tue, Dec 20, 11 at 22:56

Hey folks.

I will preface my post with the acknowledgement that I am probably the worst orchid owner on the planet. My one and only Phal can honestly be said to be neglected. He gets brought in the first time the budgies get pulled in for the night (temps forecast below 10C/50F) and goes back out to live on the ledge of my southwest-facing screened patio here in Orlando once the night temps are reliably above 50F again. He has reliably bloomed for me every winter, but also shows signs of sun-stress on the leaves and has been sporting a smear of paint for a few years now. I forget to water him more often than I remember. If he were a kid or a dog, authorities would probably take him away. But he flowers for me...

Here's my question: Do orchids branch? About six weeks ago I noticed a couple of off-shoots. My DH says they're babies, but they seem to be coming directly from the stalk of the plant in amongst the air roots. One is growing nice and strong, but the other is all caged in by the roots and one of its leaves is all wrinkled from impeded growth. Here's some pictures:

I don't want to mess with the plant right now cuz he's putting out a new spike, but once the flowers are spent, do I need to do something with this new growth?


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Phal throwing babies????

Sometime in the future when it is the best time of year you might need to take the babies away from Mum and tidy up the plant.

When is the best time of year?????

Some of those "Phals" have a Doritis lurking in the background as an ancestor. Doritis pulcherrima is one that readily makes basal keikis.

RE: Phal throwing babies????

I'd planned on a tidy-up once the latest flower stalk is spent.

Are there any references for removing them thar basal keikis? I can't really see how they are attached.

RE: Phal throwing babies????

You can cut them off using a razor blade or straight edge. Wait until the keiki has some roots then separate.

You can also leave them growing and they will eventually flower. Some phals throw basal kekis, some will develop kekis from the flower spike.

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