Several Dend. Care Questions.

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Posted by Michael Kountz on June 13, 2003 at 13:53:08:

I just started an orchid collection. I bought a Dend. Sakura from Home Depot, it was the healthiest there and I wanted to see if I could keep from the same fate as the rest of their stock. When I first got it home, I watered it too much, and had no idea what I was doing wrong until I purchased a guide. I could tell that not only was I watering it too much, but the growing medium had begun to decompose. There were also spring tails in the soil, and little flying insects that nibbled the buds. I took it out of the pot, and found out there were three plants in the pot; 2 flowering bulbs(the leaves had turned yellow and had fallen off due to overwatering, but the flowers are still healthy), and two leafy stalks growing together, as they do. One of the flowering bulbs' roots were completely destroyed, as were most of the others', and the non-flowering bulbs had black rot. I trimmed and trimmed, placed each in an individual pot(tiniest I could find) with the orchid potting mix found at every garden center in town. I set them in a west facing window, on a grate above a tray full of rocks(humidity fluctuates from 40% - 60% throughout the day). The temperature stays pretty steady between 75 and 83.

Moving on. Since then, the two flowering bulbs have developed patches of light yellow, darkening after a few days, at the base of the bulbs, and they are creeping up the sides. the patches do not circumnavigate them. One of the non-flowering bulbs is still nice and green, but the leaves have turned yellow, and will fall off in a day or two. I took the non-flowering bulbs out of their pot when I first noticed the discoloration, and I noticed that small particles of the potting medium had accumulated at the bottom of the pot, clogging the drainage holes, and thus the pot was holding a lot of moisture at the bottom, the roots had turned brown because of this. I rinsed out the small particles, and repotted it.

What I want to do is this: I want to buy some root stimulator and dip all three of them in it. Is this the right course of action?

What I want to know is, will this frequent removal and repotting have adverse affects on them in any way? Also, will anyone be able to tell me what is causing the yellow splotches on the flowering bulbs? I don't believe it is fungus, it looks like the stem is discolored all the way through.

Is this a lost cause?

I have since then recieved 5 more orchids as gifts from friends noting my interest in them. One is a Paph. Knight's Castle x Paph. something else. ;) Two are dendrobiums from hawaii, beautiful specimins with a lava rock medium. I'm taking my time with watering those two, I don't want to make the smae mistake. One of the others has a tag with "Brassda." on it.

Am I right in guessing that this is an intergenus hybrid? If so, what is the Brassia Crossed with?

I also receieved an orchid with a very non-descriptive tag. I'm calling this from memory, being as I'm not at home right know, but I believe it said; "Vuyl." Or "Vuylt." or "Vuyt."....something along that line. Does anybody have any idea what this may be?

Does anybody have any special care tips for any of these orchids? What kind of lights they may grow best under if should decide to take them out of the window? Any advice on any of these would be so great. I've tried o learn as much as I can about them, I've been reading non-stop, but it does little compliment my lack of experience. Please help.
-thank you. :)

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