I have an orchid that has spots on two leaves, and no spot on the other leaves. Among these two leaves with spots, one (named "Leaf A") has more visible/pronounced/impressive spots than the other leaf (named "Leaf B").

Look at my orchid (the one within the black borders):

enter image description here

The arrow indicates Leaf A.

You can better see this leaf here:

enter image description here

Behind this Leaf A, you can see another leaf with no spots. Behind the latter, you can see another leaf with light green : it's Leaf B (its spots are a bit visible).

Is it normal for an orchid to have spots in a leaf? Is it normal for an orchid to have one or two leaves with spots?

3 Answers 3


I think it looks like damage from too much direct sunlight. Orchids love lots of bright, but indirect sunlight.

Tropical Orchid's natural habitat is the jungle floor, where they get lots of dappled, but little direct sunlight through the tree canopy.

The best way to add shade for orchids getting light from a south or west facing window is is to hang a sheer curtain over the window. Just made sure that you have the orchid in a place where it gets bright light but no direct sunlight on the foliage.

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    I wouldn’t remove an orchid leaf that is still fleshy and green(-ish). Let them shrivel up and the plant recuperate the what’s still usable. Apart from that, the sheer shade is a good idea. Welcome to Gardening SE!
    – Stephie
    Jun 16, 2020 at 20:48
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    I generally recommend removing damaged leaves for 2 main reasons ~ First is to prevent the plant from expending any energy in attempting to 'heal' the damaged leaves. Even though damaged leaves can not be 'healed', the plant will still expend some of it's energy to try to heal the damage. That energy is better spent on producing new growth. The second reason is to encourage the plant to produce new growth. I will usually keep the least damaged leaves on a plant if removing all of the damaged leaves prunes back more than 1/3 of the total leaves on the plant. Of course some plants can
    – Avlar
    Jun 18, 2020 at 16:33
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    tolerate or even thrive when they have more than 1/3 of their leaves, stems and branches pruned back. However, that is a judgement call best made from experience and knowledge of the specific plant. Thanks for the welcome !
    – Avlar
    Jun 18, 2020 at 16:50
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    I would agree with you for the average plants, but especially phalaenopsis orchids are so slow-growing that I wouldn’t do it. Personal opinion, of course.
    – Stephie
    Jun 18, 2020 at 17:11
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    Thank you for your opinion! I am going to have to agree with you on removing the dead leaves then. I didn't realize that phalaenopsis orchids were so slow-growing that they only produce one or two leaves a year. I will edit my answer. Thanks!
    – Avlar
    Jun 18, 2020 at 17:57

I think your leaves look perfectly normal. I actually seek out hybrids with patterned leaves, because I find them to be more beautiful and have interest all year around. It looks to me like some of the leaves are showing speckling from it's parentage. Maybe from phalaenopsis stuartiana or schilleriana? Lighting is probably playing a part in how pronounced the variegation is.



Looking up diseases of Phalenopsis orchids, none of the diseases have spots like this (except for a bacterial disease possibly for a few days before death). Looked up Westcott's handbook of plant diseases by R Horst, seventh edition.

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