Should I remove roots of orchid growing outside pot?

December 10, 2009|By Ellen Nibali | Special to The Baltimore Sun

Question:The roots of my orchid are growing way out of the pot. Should I cut them off?

Answer: No, wild flailing roots are business as usual for an orchid. Orchids are epiphytes which grow in tree crotches or wherever they can get purchase in the tree canopy. It's not normal for them to be confined to a pot, consequently potting medium for orchids is primarily shards of bark. When this decomposes it is too much like soil, and the roots are not happy. They may be signaling that it’s time to repot your orchid with new specialized orchid potting "soil."

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