Flowering Shoot Broken Off Orchid: How To Save It

Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 08:30 pm

Once not paid attention and it happened. Orchids have many lovers because of their graceful growth habit. Unfortunately, this very characteristic makes the plant very vulnerable. What to do when a flower shoot breaks off? Will it grow back or will the orchid henceforth remain flowerless? In this situation, growers sometimes become really inventive in their desperation. But what really helps to make the flower bloom again? Is there any hope at all for the delicate plant? This guidebook provides valuable tips and tricks to (almost) undo the damage.

Flowering shoot on orchid broken off

The break is clearly visible and it seems so easy to just stick the broken shoot back in place. Then just fix it with some scotch tape and trust in the power of nature.
Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. A broken flower shoot on an orchid will not grow back together on its own. Wrapping scotch tape around the broken area often causes even more damage. Air stagnates under the material and causes rot on the plant.

Saving the flowering shoot

Flowering Shoot Broken Off Orchid: How To Save It

Whether or not the plant recovers depends on the function of the broken shoot. If it is a horizontally growing shoot, breaking off is not a bad thing. In this case, it is an aerial root, which does not affect the formation of flowers.
The situation is completely different with vertically growing shoots. If this is broken off, the gardener must be very lucky that the plant will sprout again at this point.

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A broken shoot does not always have to be a disadvantage. If it is not the flowering stems, the flower has to invest less energy in the now missing shoot. Thus, it is possible that it even has a growth spurt.

Note: Often the length of the remaining stem also determines whether the orchid can still be saved. If less than a quarter of the orchid is broken off, the chances are good.

What to do to encourage budding?

  • If necessary, remove the stem completely from the orchid (if only broken).
  • cut off the cut neatly
  • repot the plant
  • change the substrate
  • replant the plant
  • immerse the pot briefly in water
  • support the broken stem with another clamp
  • apply some cinnamon to the broken area
  • cover the plant with a plastic foil
  • place in a warm location
  • observe development

Note: For orchids to recover from injury, they need very high humidity. Spraying with water alone is not sufficient for this purpose. However, if the gardener puts a film over the plant, he must at the same time make sure that rot does not form. Peat moss, on the other hand, has proven effective. The gardener applies a thin layer to the substrate. Peat moss is considered to be very water retentive.

Propagate aborted flower shoots?

Unfortunately, it is not possible to make a flower stalk take root. Even in a vase with water, the flower shoot will not resprout. Nevertheless, the flower will remain for some time with regular water changes.
By the way, flower shoots still form buds in the vase, even if they had not yet appeared on the plant.

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Tip: If you put the broken flower of the orchid in a vase, you should resort to an opaque specimen and fill it with chamomile tea. Many growers report positive experience when dipping the stem in the tea.

Use the child of the orchid

If a flower stalk of an orchid is broken off, there is still hope to save the flower. The plant forms so-called childels. Although the flower stalk itself does not form new roots, with the help of the pedicle, propagation is quite possible. The grower should always keep an eye on the development. If he detects small strands of roots on the childel, he can place it in a separate pot. With a little luck and conscientious care, a new plant will soon appear.

Note: Propagation of a plant by filament is easy, but the chances of success are much less favorable than with seed sowing or propagation by cuttings.


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts.

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