Thursday, February 16, 2012

I have minus one orchid credit my husband says

Yesterday I acquired a new orchid at Lowe's bringing the total count to 8. When repotting I inadvertently made that 9.
Not sure if it's me who broke off a pseudobulb clump from Oncidium or it's the nursery that put two plants in one pot.
The nursery ( aka better-gro) has rather poor reputation though. Once I bought their orchid in 4'' pot which, upon discovery, had a 2'' pot inside stuffed with moldy peat moss and a miserable Cattleya with barely any roots left.

Yep, that tiny pot with overflowing Cattleya was masqueraded by sphagnum moss in a bigger pot. I removed and cleaned the plant immediately 'cause I couldn't stand that horror a second longer. What a sham!

Update from March 7

 I feel the need to apologize for bashing Sunbulb guys. Orchid they sell seem to be in good shape.
Apparently it's normal to see large number of dead roots while repotting cattleya; these plants don't like root disturbance as noted by a commenter. Also some oncidiums can break off easily; today I managed to break a new orchid in three while washing and repotting (shhh, don't tell my husband I bought more of them!).
It's interesting how the same facts get interpreted differently depending on context. When I see a dead root on my old orchid I trim it and think "ok, normal part of life". When I see a dead root on a new acquisition I tend to fret "I paid money for THAT?".


  1. There are sometimes legitimate reasons to "pot on" orchids like this into bigger pots, particularly for those species that ramble their roots out of existing pots and into the air, yet resent having their roots disturbed by repotting. Cattleyas usually don't resent such repotting, but I have heard of people doing this with cattleyas. That said, it's kind of surprising to see it!

  2. I had that happen to me as well. No wonder my oncidium was sulking--its 6inch pot was just a bunch of sphagnum hiding mass of dead roots in the shape of a smaller pot... with an even smaller 2.5inch pot buried inside.
    The poor thing spiked for me within 3 months of a proper repotting.