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View Poll Results: What are clay pots good for??

Voters
176. You may not vote on this poll
  • Paphs

    29 16.48%
  • Phrags

    20 11.36%
  • Phals

    63 35.80%
  • Catts

    95 53.98%
  • Onc

    49 27.84%
  • Intergenic/other

    39 22.16%
  • Cymbidiums

    25 14.20%
  • target practice

    50 28.41%
Multiple Choice Poll.
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Clay Pot Poll

This is a discussion on Clay Pot Poll within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; I'm definitely a clay believer so far. Clay seems to be perfect for my diff ...

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  1. #31
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    I'm definitely a clay believer so far. Clay seems to be perfect for my diff mediums, watering habits and indoor growing requirements. I use it for everything I've got, except for a couple in decorative-ceramic-style pots leftover from the old days and 6 hanging in baskets.

  2. #32
    espranch is offline Senior Member
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    I mainly use clay pots with the slits on the side. ( three or four ) However, I DO use plastic pots which I have made several round drain holes in them. I've done this by heating different size copper or brass tubes which are heated by my husbands' small tourch. Works great, and lets the plastic pots drain well. My motto is: What ever works with orchids...use it! Betty

  3. #33
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    I had everything in clay, until about six months ago,when I started switching to SH. Now I use the clay pots to stabilize the plastic ones until after they have flowered. Then it's SH fot them also.I find it easier to use SH pots,(both purchased and homemade), than using clay pots in trays.I do, however, prefer the looks of a clay pot.

  4. #34
    espranch is offline Senior Member
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    Smile Clay/plastic pots

    I don't know "what" SH means. I am new at this blogging thing, however I've grown orchids on & off for over 40 yrs. I've had good luck with clay pots with the slits, and plastic pots which I make holes in. I make sure that my pots are clean when I re-pot. With the plastic, I clean them with soap & water, then let them soak in a 10 % clorex solution for a couple of hrs. I then drain & rinse them. The clay pots are cleaned first, then I bake them at 400degrees for an hr. Just my personal opinion, but it seems to work for my orchids. Betty

  5. #35
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    Question Tree fern pot

    John, Have you ever grown an orchid in a tree fern pot? I just got a few ( from Florida ) and they seem to like the great drainage! Betty

  6. #36
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    No, I haven't tried the tree fern pots yet. First Rays has just introduced some with saucers built in, I thought of trying them.

  7. #37
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    Talking tree fern pots...

    Hey... That sounds great! I have had to put mine inside of clay pots ( with slits ) to let the water drain. So far the orchids seem to love em! Betty

  8. #38
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    Clay pots are great for hot climates like here in the Philippines. The only problem with clay is that they are so HEAVY - (well, the clay pots sold here locally).

  9. #39
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    Talking Clay Pots/etc.

    Yes, clay pots are heavy. When I re-pot large cattleyas, I use plastic with holes burned into the sides every three or four inches. I was using my husbands' soddering iron but he stopped me! He made me some little tubes, three different sizes, fixed on sticks. I heat those up and when they're really hot, I punch holes into the plastic pot. Works great, and the orchids seem to love these airy pots. I also use tree fern pots, which really give good drainage. I use a combination of fir bark, about 60 %, perlite 20 %, and charcoal 20% around the plant to anchor it into the pot & keep it stable. Works for me! Betty

  10. #40
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    Smile

    Even though this is an old thread, it was informative for a relative newcomer like me to read it. It looks like the key points with clay pots are:

    1. Roots tend to stick to them.
    2. Roots can be pried off with a knife, or the pots can be broken and the roots peeled off, or soak them first. I think I'll soak first.
    3. It's harder to overwater - this is an important point for me, as someome who is overattentive. But they may need wrapping in plastic for long vacations. Who gets long vacations though?
    4. They are heavier and less likely to fall over. I've had some in plastic fall over multiple times, so I "get" that point.
    5. Some orchids may like clay better than others. I've started putting intergeneric oncidium family orchids in clay and they seem to grow nicely. One has bloomed, a noid that I think might be a Burrageara or Odontocidium. Also, Cymbidiums have really tenacious roots, so might not be the best choice for clay. Plus they tend to get big so would be more heavy.
    6. It might be a good idea to bake the pots before reuse. I bake a lot, so maybe I'll just leave scrubbed pots in the oven through baking a couple of pies or loaves of bread. Or just use new ones.
    7. I like the rigid sides, better than flexible side plastic pots. I think it's less trauma for roots, at least until repotting time. Then plastic is easier. I handle them a lot, picking them up to see if it's time to water, and examine the plant, and I water most of them in the sink. I feel like rigid sides protect the plant.

    A couple of things I wonder about -
    1. Buildup of salts on the pot. This seems much worse in clay. I use a scouring pad in running water which seems to work well. I fertilize weakly weekly and use rain water, but still get some salts buildup. It's worse on plants I have at work, that get the water from there too. They sometimes get mold on the pot sides too. For floppy leaf orchids, like Phalenopsis, if the leaf rests on the pot edge, it causes a hole to 'burn' in the leaf. However, I do like the aged look of the clay pots after they age. (duh).
    2. Hard to find the right shape. I started looking in the plant section of every store I go into to find the right ones. They seem to be "azalea" pots. I have used broken pots in the bottoms of taller clay pots, to provide air and bulk. I might have to 'hoard' a few.

    Sorry if some of this is redundant - I thought it might be useful to put it into one summary.

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