Repotting my masdavalia

This is one of the most bizarre looking flowers but I have to say I love how bushy she is with her strange spikes

But her flowers are fading and so I’ve repotted her and made a step by step video explaining a little about my pots and watering system.

So I hope it’s useful… happy potting! 🙂

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Repotting an orchid

I found my favorite orchid medium online and my order arrived in no time , so I’m able to repot some of my orchids which are a little desperate.

As you can see it’s a mixture of kiwi bark and ceramic pebbles. I’m a huge fan of this.

The pieces are also big enough to allow circulation and good drainage.

I had been experimenting with various media and some new inorganic media. Needless to say I have some opinions about the variation in hydration between the various substances ( but that’s a post for another day. )

So, one of my awesome dendrobiums was desperate for a repot as well as the little unidentified “Cambria” orchid I bought a couple of weeks ago on sale (it’s blooms were finished, I always repot when they finish blooming after i buy them). I thought I’d share how I repot an orchid.

My kit includes a tray (so husband doesn’t get upset by dead orchid roots and dirt everywhere), clean scissors, pots and media.

I add extra holes in my pots with a hot nail to ensure good drainage and good air circulation, it also helps with even drying in the media so there aren’t patches which are always wet.

Next I remove the orchid from its pot, it usually helps to soak it before hand, means more flexible roots and less damage.

I then remove the old media from the roots, gently teasing it with my fingers and using jets of water from the tap.

At this point the root structure is visible and I can assess the roots and remove dead ones (usually brown and squishy)

What I’m left with are the good roots, healthy and hydrated

As you can see I start with little media in the pot and then I position my orchid with any new growths in the center of the pot and fill in the media around the roots.

The result…. a happy stable orchid.

In my opinion it’s good practice to change the media, make sure it’s fresh and right for your plant. It also allows you to assess the root structure of the plants so you know the health of your orchids. The whole process is not too hard, not is it excessively time consuming. I figure if I spent all that money on my orchids I should make sure they are going to thrive and of course…. bloom 😊

All bound up

Well, finally my incredible cymbidium finished blooming, she has been an absolute joy, I can hardly believe how beautiful she is ❤❤❤…. here’s a picture in case you don’t remember

As with all my orchids, I repot them as soon as they stop blooming which ensures they have fresh medium and healthy roots.

To my horror, when I took my cymbidium out of her pot I found this…

Yes…. she is completely and utterly root bound. She seems to have almost no media in the base of the pot (it would have gradually been pushed up out of the pot by the growing roots ) and the roots are well and truly knotted, undoing them is impossible without serious damage which will compromise the plant significantly.

There is a chance that parts of this plant will die as it is unable to absorb sufficient nutrients with the roots in this state. However, I found three happy New growths

I am hoping that they will put roots out into the new pot and fresh medium and the plant will have a healthy future.

I potted her in a mixture of organic and inorganic media.

1 – perlite

2- bark

3- seramis

4- pon

She’s in a pot which is double the width of the old pot and she is positioned eccentrically with her new growths in the middle of the pot.

She’s a terrestrial orchid and so she doesn’t need the same air circulation or light on her roots that an epiphyte would, such as a Phalaenopsis. This allows me to place her happily into a dark pot.

I always add extra holes to my pots, with purpose of increasing drainage and sometimes air circulation.

It’s easily achieved with a hot nail of the desired circumference (I heat the nail with a flame, do take safety precautions if you attempt this )

I am hoping she will be able to settle in and will survive her knotted roots, I’ll keep you updated of course.

I’ll be posting tomorrow as well with some new acquisitions… ahhh orchid love ❤

Disaster

While watering my orchids I noticed an odd colour to the leaves of my Howard’s dream Orchid. They look almost rusty but there doesn’t seem to be thinning of the leaves like I would expect with a mite infestation.

It’s on the pseudobulbs too and the worse affected leaves I removed completely.

I’m so upset, I adore this orchid, I hope she pulls through.

There was no apparent disease on the new growth and the previous pseudobulb looked clear too so I’ve divided them off the rest of the plant and put the entire thing in quarantine. I’ve checked the rest of the orchids which were next to her and they seem ok but that’s a bit of a waiting game, hopefully it will be all clear for the rest of my girls.