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How do you keep track of watering requirements, etc.?

This is a discussion on How do you keep track of watering requirements, etc.? within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; Hi all, My collection has gone from 5-6 (mostly phals and some onc. intergenerics) plants ...

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  1. #1
    Alplily NH's Avatar
    Alplily NH is offline Senior Member
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    Default How do you keep track of watering requirements, etc.?

    Hi all,

    My collection has gone from 5-6 (mostly phals and some onc. intergenerics) plants to 40-50 (phals, paphs, catts, onc, etc., species, hybrids and intergenerics) over the last year and I'm finding it a challenge to keep track of differing needs as I integrate and learn about the newer plants. And it is a pain to read notes on ID tags. How do you keep track of different watering requirements, rest/dormancy needs, etc.? I've been putting different colored pipe cleaners in pots: Yellow=allow to dry between waterings, Green=keep moist, Purple=winter rest (reduce feeding and water), Red=watch for insects after quarantine, etc.

    Any other expert tips? Thanks!

    *alplily

  2. #2
    sadie's Avatar
    sadie is offline Senior Member
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    Default

    Hey there. I have this cool software program that I've used for about a year and I LOVE it! I enter in the cultural information and then can run a report for just that, or cultural info plus what needs to be repotted etc etc. Basically, you can track everything--bloom cycles, how long in bloom, repotting, bugs or problems your treatments and sucess as well as all the cultural info. There is a place for a photo of the bloom, where you got it--basically everything you can think of to track. You can input as much or as little as you like. I really like it.

    The software costs $40 or $50 and you just download it--then you are entitled to free upgrades for life, I think. Since it is a product for purchase, I don't think I can post the name and source, but PM me and I'll tell you where to get it.

  3. #3
    Brutal_Dreamer's Avatar
    Brutal_Dreamer is offline Dreaming with my eyes open...
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    I like the idea of the pipe cleaners. I would also suggest grouping the plants that need the same requirements together. (You probably already do, but worth saying just in case.) If you group them, then you can label the shelf or area and refer to the label for care. Just a thought.

    Cheers,
    BD

  4. #4
    cindiras's Avatar
    cindiras is offline Senior Member
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    the pipe cleaner idea is a really good visual cue, I like that one! I do as Bruce has said and group plants with similar water and light needs together. I hadn't thought to label the shelves, that would be wise for when I get a plant sitter if I go on an extended trip. Another idea for color coding is those little sticky dots you can get at office supply stores and place your choice of dot on the plant pot or basket.

  5. #5
    breeindy's Avatar
    breeindy is offline Junior Member
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    sadie can you give me the name of this software? sounds good.

  6. #6
    pavel's Avatar
    pavel is offline change is the only constant
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    For potted chids there is another option that might help -- though it would take some experimenting/trial & error -- use different media or media blends so those plants that need to dry out by "watering day" will have done so while those that must stay moist still will be.

  7. #7
    Ron-NY is offline rothaholic
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    I vary my medium and/pots to hold water or dry faster for my potted plants.

  8. #8
    GrumpyBear is offline Senior Member
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    i just water by looking at the media, i don't have so many orchids so i can remember which ones like it wetter or dryer. also, i don't buy orchids that need a winter rest, that makes it easier...

  9. #9
    annacello's Avatar
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    I water all my orchids at the same time (every two weeks), but keep the phals and paphs moister in between by spraying the surface of the medium with water once or twice. It works great for me!

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