Phalaenopsis Orchids: Cutting Brown Spikes

I have three phalaenopsis orchids in my home right now, in various stages of their flowering cycles. My greenish-yellow one, while several of its flowers have withered and fallen away, is very active, still has flowers on the top half of the spike and has a small branch of flower buds at the tip that will very likely result in new flowers. The flower spike is a very healthy green. Obviously, I will leave this plant undisturbed.IMG_3052

The dark pink one has several flowers still looking fresh after many months but the tip of that spike is starting to wrinkle. This is a main spike. This main spike actually produced a branch off to its side. That main spike’s branch turned brown and I cut out only that branch, as shown in the second photo, right of center. When the main spike turns brown, then I will cut it down to the base of the plant.


The third one, which produces yellow flowers with dark pink streaks, is no longer in bloom and I cut the spike down to the base of the plant. It only has leaves and, in fact, the young leaves from a few months ago have turned from a bright green to a dark green and are getting bigger.IMG_3053

I continue to lightly water these plants every two weeks, to keep the growing media moist and to support the beautiful leaves of these plants.

Here is an informative site on phalenopsis care, including information and videos on cutting spikes:

UPDATE: See my January 12, 2014 post on what I decided to do with a flower spike that remained green all this time!


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