So perhaps i'm just over-concerned.
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This is a discussion on Fertilizer Questions within the General Information forums, part of the Frequently Asked Questions category; Welcome Sam. I've purchased orchid fertilizer at both garden centers and big box stores, it's ...
Welcome Sam. I've purchased orchid fertilizer at both garden centers and big box stores, it's generally availabe. I'm one of those "negligent" plant owners which works out quite well for orchids since I forget to feed them regularly in the winter which is I gather is actually good for them. I found that most plants have a dormant period when they don't grow or grow very slowly which is why my regular houseplants have never kicked the bucket in the winter when I've forgotten to water them for a month! They are large plants in very large pots in case you all are wondering how I've gotten away with this for so many years. Phals seem to like the cooler weather and grow a bit better, all of mine except for one, is in full bloom. The one not in bloom is growing a new leaf and a new spike is forming. I don't think that plants do well if they're subjected to excessive daily attention, other than mounted orchids that needed to be misted daily that is. I find that inspecting them regularly, weekly or every other week when I give them a good soaking in the sink keeps me on top of anything negative that is happening with them.
So perhaps i'm just over-concerned.
I agree with Cakedaddy, a wood basket would dry a little too quickly indoors. Indoors I like clear plastic pots with slots on the sides. You can place that inside a basket or decorative ceramic pot if you want to. Whatever pot you choose, I recommend using the smallest pot that the roots will comfortably fit in. Using a very small pot is the best way to help prevent the dreaded root rot.
You are doing a great job for what I could read. A few suggestions:
Distilled water removes a whole deal of minerals, some of which are useful to orchids and other plants. If your only concern with tap water is chlorine just fill a gallon and leave it uncapped overnight, chlorine is a gas and will evaporate. Distilled water is more expensive!
Pro tekt is silicon with a bit of potassium, it makes the plants shiny and "stiffer", good product but tends to precipitate easily and clogs misters. Just use it with dechlorinated water ( as above) and don't mix it. It is not a good idea to mix fertilizers and other chemicals anyway.
Fertlizers! Im a lazy bum so I only use a balanced (20-20-20, 17-17-17) year round but with trace elements like iron, cobalt, copper, etc. Read the labels, you can do a research in the net. Makers usually post the label.
Finally, YOU are the best judge of your growing conditions and it seems you are doing fine.
PS and join your local orchid society!
Just picked up some organic orchid potting mix, %75 fir bark, perilite and charcoal.
Got a 9-14-23 fertilizer, Urea-free and a four inch and five inch clay pot.
Gonna repot the two phals who currently have no drainage and change the medium of one, but put it back in the same pot.
well phals like to be little bit more damp than other orchids so I usually stick some spag.moss in with the orchid medium or on the bottom of the pot. It seems to be just "enough" so that the medium doesn't dry out completely but it doesn't stay really wet for a prolonged amount of time, especially for the very small pots, at least so that it would rot. - martha
Well then, i'll have to run back and pick some up.
I've gotta check out a re-potting tutorial, that'll be tomorrow's project, as unfortunately, i've got to go to work soon.
Also, the fertilizer i bought is a slow release, is that better or worse than a liquid fertilizer?
I couldn't find a liquid fertilizer without urea at any local stores, any recommendations on those?
Just make sure that you soak the media overnight before re-potting. It has got to be moist before re-potting...Betty
I've got it soaking now, going to try repotting my healthy phal as i don't think the media is appropriate, the unhealthy phal because the media is certainly not appropriate and it's gonna die without some form of intervention and the other phal because the media is %100 sphag moss.
Wish me luck!
Well, i managed to, i believe successfully, repot all three of the orchids, who seem to be quite happy in their new media/pots.
Hopefully the dying one will make a comeback, it was suffering from fairly severe root rot and I clipped away all of the rotted roots, it still had about four left, with the new media, will it make a comeback?
I'll upload pictures later, they look much happier to me!
Thanks for your help.