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Handling sphag with phals

This is a discussion on Handling sphag with phals within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; A few of my mini-phals that I had repotted into bark were not growing that ...

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  1. #1
    MichaelNYC is offline Junior Member
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    Default Handling sphag with phals

    A few of my mini-phals that I had repotted into bark were not growing that well, so I repotted in sphagnum moss.

    My question is in watering the phals in sphag. When I repotted them into sphag, I wrung out the moss to a damp-sponge consistency, but when I water them, it appears that the moss is quite sopping wet. I let it drain, of course, but it just seems too wet. I don't water again until the moss is almost dry, but the early days of sopping wetness makes me worry that root rot might set in.

    Any advice on handling sphag and watering would be most appreciated!

  2. #2
    nicki is offline Senior Member
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    You have plenty of air circulation? Are there holes in the pot? I've had no luck with using sphag only. Stays too wet for too long. I think it's because of the conditions I grow in. Maybe if I were able to keep them outside they would dry quicker. But inside they've all ended up with rot for me.

  3. #3
    orchidlady's Avatar
    orchidlady is offline Senior Member
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    I have grown my Phals in straight sphag for years. The trick for me is to layer with styrofoam packing peanuts and pack it fairly loosely in the pot. Also make sure you have plenty of air circulation. The sphag may appear wet for a couple of days but should start drying after that. If it stays really wet, then you will have problems. Also make sure that the plant is not over potted and that the sphag gets quite dry between waterings.

    Susan

  4. #4
    Brutal_Dreamer's Avatar
    Brutal_Dreamer is offline Dreaming with my eyes open...
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    If you are used to growing in bark, try this:

    Do your normal bark mix and chop up sphag so that about 25 - 30 % of your mix is the sphag. This will retain water longer and the bark, sponge rock, charcoal, etc will give room for air circulation.

    Good luck!

    Cheers,
    BD

  5. #5
    MichaelNYC is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks, one and all, for your help!

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