Today’s Orchid Care and Maintenance Question is from Helena in Bocas del Toro, Panama!
Question: Two of my orchids have grown a new plant off the old flower stem. The root is 1 1/2 in. long. How should I remove it to repot it?
Hi Helena! I’m so glad you’ve written all the way from Panama! Your orchids must be loving the warm and humid climate in Bocas del Toro! It is difficult to say what exactly is going on with your orchid, but it sounds as though your plants are growing keikis. (You can check out my post on orchid anatomy.)
I’ve propagated a few keikis from my phalaenopsis orchids over the years—each one has gone on to flourish into a full-size plant using the orchid propagation method below. Phalaenopsis grown this way should reach flowering size 18 months to 2 years after they first appeared.
(Proceed only if the roots of the keiki are longer than at least 2 inches.)
Carefully remove the small plant from the flower spike by cutting the stem 1 to 2 inches either side of the plant, this will ensure that you don’t damage the roots of the keiki.
Assemble everything you need. This comprises of a pot large enough for 12 months of growth, a medium grade potting mix, a label with the variety and of course the keiki – see photo.
Carefully pot the keiki —keeping the roots in tact below the orchid potting mix.
Here’s the keiki on June 30th – it has produced a new leave and roots
The keiki has another new leaf and a flower spike emerging!
The keiki in full bloom
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Warmest wishes from sunny Florida,
The Orchid Care Lady