Phalaenopsis amabilis buds are empty

Discussion in 'Orchidaceae (orchids)' started by Apartmentgardener, Dec 12, 2015.

  1. Apartmentgardener

    Apartmentgardener New Member

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    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Hi, this is my first orchid, purchased last spring in full bloom. The blooms lasted until early summer. Some of the larger bottom leaves have withered, but I assumed that was normal. Over the summer what I thought were new aerial roots sprouted, but three of them turned out to be flower stocks. The buds have grown, but the first one turned from green to a parchment colour, and when I squeezed it, there was nothing inside. I'm afraid the remaining buds will be the same.
    The orchid is small and I have it in a ceramic bowl which has lots of holes, kind of like lace. I don't have it in any soil, just sphagnum moss. I test it every week for dryness, and when the top moss feels dry, I give it a bath in the bathroom sink for about 20 minutes. Now I'm wondering if the orchid doesn't get enough nutrients to properly form flowers.
    Can someone please help and let me know if I am doing something wrong? The orchid sits on a NW windowsill, where the temp. varies between 16-18 C.
  2. Velosh

    Velosh Member

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    Hi. Assuming you still have your orchid, I think what you experienced is "normal." People tend to see orchids in stores in full bloom and they buy it and take it home. I think one of the problems we face after we purchase the orchids is that usually it's in a medium that's full of sphagnum moss. Although moss is a good way to keep your orchid moist, it tends to cause roots to rot. My guess is that the reason why the buds fall is because it might have been too moist and there are some problems with the root system. When I buy a new orchid that didn't come from a specialized store, I would take it home and enjoy the flowers. When the flowers are gone, I take it out of the pot and change the media into something more suitable. If I see it producing more flowers, I tend to make a painful choice of cutting it off. This saves the plant energy because it will need energy to establish itself again after I change the media.

    Good luck and I hope this helps.

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