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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 have slowly evolved to clear plastic pots, ( with side slits & holes in ...

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  1. #41
    espranch is offline Senior Member
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    I have slowly evolved to clear plastic pots, ( with side slits & holes in the bottom ) and LECA for media. My orchids are doing soooooo good, and I never have to worry about overwatering them! All but two of my hundred orchids are in the LECA, now. Of course, the twelve mounted orchids are still mounted. I still fertilize once a week, and water with plain water a few days later...This is because even with a misting system, it still gets to ninety-two in the greenhouse at mid-day. We, here in Texas are in the "triple digits" part of the summer, and likely to stay that way off & on for the rest of the Summer. Betty :-)

  2. #42
    leafmite's Avatar
    leafmite is offline Senior Member
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    I just switched my orchids from clay to plastic net pots. The clay pots were very heavy to lug around and I always dreaded repot time due to broken roots. It will be fun to see how this works out.
    Leafmite
    Posted via Mobile Device

  3. #43
    AnnaEA is offline Member
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    I am using clay pots with my Phals -- not to grow in, but as cache pots. Every evening I run the clay pot under hot water until it is thoroughly soaked, and this helps keep the humidity up around my orchids. Plus it gives me something to fiddle with and water every day without running the risk of drowning my orchids.

  4. #44
    espranch is offline Senior Member
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    Red face

    Another great thing about plastic pots, is that the roots do not stick to the sides of the pot! Horray...No more broken roots! Betty

  5. #45
    Desdinova is offline Senior Member
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    I grow under lights and have trouble with clay--everything dries out too fast. Only thing in clay right now--walkeriana, and it came that way.

    What I use is loose sphagnum in plastic aircone pots, and water with a spray bottle from Home Despot. It allows me to control watering with ease. I keep one with fertilizer solution and one with plain water, and alternate.

  6. #46
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    otis226 is offline Senior Member
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    Being down south. I really like clay pots and would probably grow most of my potted plants in them if they were cheaper and more easily available. For my Catts and Encyclias I like drilling extra holes in the pots to add more aeration, as I tend to be a 'generous' waterer. I find many/most of my plants grow better in clay than plastic. Of course repotting takes a bit more of an effort. I had to soak a large Laelia for about 15 min today and then use a hacksaw blade around the inside perimeter of the pot to get it out without much damage. As with all things orchid, patience pays.
    Cheers,
    Tony

  7. #47
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    coeruleo is offline Night Bloomer
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    i like clay pots for oncidiums and heavy plants that need a good heavy base to hold them in place. i don't care for the white ring from the water residue, but i live with it. and i scrub it off with a god brush now and then. i like clay because the roots stick, which i think might be vital to get some orchids to flower. i don't think some orchids will risk flowering unless they have a 'good grip' on the 'tree' they are growing on. i notice when i re-pot a cymbidium, it often skips a year of flowering, unless it latches onto the clay pot. when i use plastic, they never flower until they grab a hold of the bark mix, which takes longer. vandas also seem to like to hold onto the clay pots. repotting is easy, use a hammer to break the pots, and whatever sticks to the roots, leave it there (same for chunks of bark too) so the plant won't feel so abused and go into shock.

  8. #48
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    The pots I have are covered with holes (manufactured for drainage) and work really well on my phals. I haven't tried it on my Catts but after reading some of these comments I may try it.

  9. #49
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    Default Clay pots

    I like using clay pots but I take into account the fact that they do two things. First and foremost, they allow the potting mix to dry more quickly. This is very useful for things like the rupicolous Laelias, Tolumnias, and other plants who cannot tolerate wet conditions. Secondly, clay pots keep the root ball a bit cooler. This can help some things that you may have difficulty keeping cool enough.

  10. #50
    Catt Mandu's Avatar
    Catt Mandu is offline Senior Member
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    I use clay (unglazed terracotta) pots almost exclusively for Catts and Phals. I do have some Catts and Phals in net pots, but those are almost always nested down in a clay pot. I also have other genera in clay pots (a Paph., Dendrobiums, Coelogyne, Encyclias, Trichocentrum, etc.) Over all, I would say 90% of all of my plants are in unglazed clay pots.

    Yes, some of the roots do stick to the pot, but all those roots sticking to the pot are a sign of success. Usually there is an abundance of roots when the roots are swarming the pot, losing a few when re-potting is mostly not a problem. You can do the hammer thing when re-potting to sacrifice the pot & keep more roots intact, but I rarely need to do that.

    Clay pot advantages:

    More breathable
    Unglazed terracotta wicks excess moisture away from medium and roots; this can also help keep roots cooler
    Organic medium seems to decompose less quickly in terracotta
    Weight of the pot results in greater stability on the shelf
    After cleaning, a clay pot can be heat sterilized in the oven, slowly raised to 500 F.


    I agree there are disadvantages (higher cost, more fragile). I do use plastic pots for some things that like more moisture at the root. You lose many of the clay pot advantages when the pots are glazed, too.

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