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  • Thread starter Rosie
  • Start date
I recently rescued an abused  Dendrobium from a friend, it's looking a bit better since I've had it, but I don't have a lot of experiance with orchids so I'm not 100% sure what to do for the best. The thing that's worrying me is that the stalks are all wrinkly, I'm assuming that they shouldn't be. Is it dehydration? Can it be fixed? What else should I do for it?

(Edited by Rosie at 7:50 am on May 12, 2002)
Yes your wrinkly stalk problem is a water problem. Don't worry though orchids like these take a can take a beating.
If it's on older bulbs its natural though. Just give a good watering every 3-4 days and it will be fine.
It's also possible that the dehydration is due to overwatering. Dendrobiums want to dry out between waterings - when they don't, the roots can die. Dead roots mean no water intake and therefore, dehydration.

So, Rosie, you've either got a situation where the plant was overwatered or underwatered. If the medium is airy - bark chips for example - and there are live roots (they should be firm and chalky-white), then do as Tristan advised - the plant simply needs more water.

If the medium is dense - like a peat moss base - then overwatering is a good possibility. Again, check for live roots. If you have few or none, then I'd suggest repotting in an airy mixture and placing the plant in a high-humidity environment (like a clear plastic bag). Water only sparingly until new roots start to grow.
Hi Rosie

Welcome to the forums.
Hang in there with the dendrobium. They are pretty hardy. I rescued a mini from my boss. It can take a while, but they can recover from abuse. Once you have checked out the roots and adjusted the watering situation, you will likely see some new canes developing once its feeling better. You can then give it some fertilizer (orchid fertilizer) once every two weeks thru its growing season. And a little bit of Superthrive might not hurt since it promotes a good root system.

Let us know how its doing!

Rosie the advice here is all good. I grow my Dendrob's in the fork of a tree with no media at all and they do fine. Some are a bit wrinkly but they are alive after 7 years and flower constantly so they are obviously OK. If your plant is growing new leaves then it is surviving. don't worry.

Cheers, fatboy.