Style Observer

Gardening — March 18

Dear Orchid DOC

Betty Ashley

Sunday, March 18, 2018

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Dear Orchid Doc:

My orchids have done so well that they are now much too tall, over six feet, and their legs are getting very scrawny. Help!

Ragbeir

Dear Ragbeir:

If they are much too tall you might start losing them. Indeed, the fact that they are getting scrawny signals the beginning of the end.

Here's what to do: cut off the scrawny part, leaving the plant above with the roots. If there is no root above, then it might be wiser to tie it with a piece of wire and hang to allow it access to water and sunlight. Anticipate new roots, hopefully, in a month.

If they do have roots, then you can go ahead and repot. Remember to leave a root or two on the outside of pots, as they kind of like that...being air feeders.

Dear Orchid Doc:

What do you think of the vitamin Superthrive for orchids? Do you still use it? I have been using it on my orchids. If memory serves me well you mentioned it in another medium. I don't quite remember what you said, I think it was something like ...it makes “rockstone bloom”.

My problem is this, I have been asked by many people: “What if I stop using the vitamin? Would the orchids die? What is your present take on Superthrive?

PW

Dear PW:

Superthrive ... the 50-in-one vitamins, I like to tell people ... does to the orchid what a banned substance does to a track athlete. It speeds up the growth. I still use it but 0nly on orchids and non-edible plants, because it does speed up everything and my personal belief is that if it speeds up the time to fruition, then it might not be a good idea to put it on edibles.

The question of discontinuing use is entirely up to you. Do remember that life offers no guarantees; whatever you decide, I would recommend that it be kept away from edible plants.

BETTY STEPHENSON ASHLEY
Orchid Cottage
Kingston 8, Jamaica .
Cell # 876-3224585,
Fax 876-931-8805
bettystephensonashley@gmail.com

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