The Orchid Forum, for the UK and Europe (previously known as The UK Orchid Forum) • View topic - Is this a virus? And how to disinfect your cutting tools
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2016 3:29 am 
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Hi everyone. This is my Phal. heiroglyphica x self. I mounted it about a month ago. It has put out a new root and is putting out a new leaf. The question is, in the picture you can see the way the leaf looks discolored. Is this possibly a virus. I have it separated from my other orchids. I hope this is not a virus, don't want to lose this species. Thank you in advance everyone....Mike

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2016 7:21 am 
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I find viruses very difficult to identify in leaves, very much easier in flowers where they tend to produce 'colour break '. This is where the normal solid colour of a flower is broken and streaked.

Having said that I do not think you have a virus, but it would be wise to keep it separate just in case. I would treat it with a fungicide.

To disinfect cutting tools I use either domestic bleach, or kitchen blow torch.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2016 12:26 pm 
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I personally wouldn't say this is a virus as the new leaf is clean, and the is not very uniform in the leaf.

Like Terry said viruses are hard to tell untillmfloeering but, as a General rule of thumb a virus runs through the vascular system of the plant as it will affect all of the the plant and usually has a uniformmlook to it through out the hole leaf.

But your phals has done what some of my phals do I don't know If it is a fungus or its bacterial, but I find with my phals that affect leaf will drop, I have always put it down to the, fact that my growing conditions are a little on the cool side for my phals in the summer I don't have a problem with this. Yet whe it comes down to spring and Autumn I get this problem.

As far a sterilizing your tools same as above either bleach and disinfectant spray, or heating ur tools at a high heat will do the job, there are other things on the market but, some are nor sold for the amateur market.

I always make sure I sterilize between each plant that I am working with.

Hope this helps



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PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2016 10:00 am 
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Its really hard to say what it is but, on the whole, your plant looks happy. A plant with a virus may not show any outward effects but will be less vigorous. If the leaf continues to turn yellow then fall off, I would say too much water. If the yellow spots start to develop on other leaves, it may be a virus.
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A virus wouldn't just show up unless you already have it in your collection. Like people viruses, they are spread by the exchange of bodily fluids - in this case, plant fluids - while repotting, dividing, pruning... Practice good plant hygiene. A lot of times, you will not know a plant has a virus until after it spreads to other plants. Sterilize your clippers between plants, wash your hands a lot, always sterilize used pots, and never reuse potting medium.
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