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sphagg or bark as a potting medium for orchids?

This is a discussion on sphagg or bark as a potting medium for orchids? within the General Information forums, part of the Frequently Asked Questions category; hello all i have a question that i am curious about. Do some phals just ...

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  1. #1
    mattryan is offline Junior Member
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    Default sphagg or bark as a potting medium for orchids?

    hello all i have a question that i am curious about. Do some phals just do better in sphagg rather than bark? I have a phal that i have tried for quite a while to re-grow it's poor roots in bark and have had no luck...fed up i changed it to sphagg 2 weeks ago and it's starting a new root and the leaf it stalled on looks like it's growing as well. I usually stay away from sphagg..but i guess i see why some peeps swear by it. Any replies would be great thanks all

  2. #2
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    Brutal_Dreamer is online now Dreaming with my eyes open...
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    Maybe this phal was craving more water? I wonder how it would behave for you in semi-hydro? I grow just about everything in a home-made bark mix. It fits my watering schedule and my plants (for the most part anyway) do really great. I start off my seedlings (just out of flask) in sphag, but usually not much else grows in just sphag. It stays too wet for us the way we water.

    Cheers,
    BD

  3. #3
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    Cjcorner is offline Senior Member
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    I used to hate spagnum. I think the trick with it is to replace it as soon as it begins compacting down. When I have a plant struggling...instead of returning it to 100% spag; I put a normal potting material and top it with a layer of spag. It helps retain that little extra moisture. However; some plants seem to do really well in spag with a few packing peanuts for air space.

  4. #4
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    I LOVE sphag moss... it allows my water schedule to be flexable.
    I admitt, I've forgotten to water my phals, a day or two late, by the moss is there to help me.
    I use sphag in every single of my mixes. Sometimes 100%, some 50% and some just 5%...

    Bark has been very challenging for me because it dries out extremely fast in my conditions.


    Basically, what I'm trying to say is... it depends on your schedule (how much time you have to water) and your enviorment (dry or humid, stagnant, or air flowing through)

  5. #5
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    orchid-man is offline Not Normal
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    I'm like quite a number here that doesn't use sphag - only bark.I even de-flask in to bark.The only thing with bark is the natural fungicide that is present in new bark,this really slows down the growth of roots on struggling plants.

    the trick that I have learn't with bark is that the natural fungicide can be destroyed very easily by either of two ways.

    The first way is to compost the bark - it takes about 6 - 8 weeks in the summer.Great no time input and is outside and moist when needed.

    The second method is more time consuming,but the bark will be ready weeks sooner,So what is it , -Cook the bark , boil the bark for about 20 mins,drain and let cool and you are ready to go.

  6. #6
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    kiwiorchids is offline Plant Nut
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    i usually use sphag for plants that are struggling, such as my winika that started drying out after it fell off the punga log. The snails got to it before i did (typical snails-they are s'posed to be slow, but beat you to the important stuff) and chewed of most of the roots. 2 months of bark culture and it still wouldnt pick up. so into the sphag it went, an technique we call in the waikato as "sphag and bag".
    Now, 3 months later its growing quite happily, even though it naturally grows quite high and sometimes dry, and seems to enjoy the moisture. Also, i pot alot of my Pleuro and onc. alliance members in it too, as the onc. alliance especially seems to do much better in sphag.

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