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New to Orchids

This is a discussion on New to Orchids within the New Growers: Ask the Senior Members forums, part of the New Growers category; Hi! I'm completely new to orchids, actually avoiding them as expensive plants that I'd most ...

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  1. #1
    PhoenixDawn is offline Junior Member
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    Question New to Orchids

    Hi! I'm completely new to orchids, actually avoiding them as expensive plants that I'd most likely kill. ^^;; I have a green thumb for potted plants, and my friend recently gave me Milt. Lycaeno (sp?) 'Stamperland' or a Milt. HerrAlexandre '189'. Not sure which. It had just finished flowering when I got it and I'm trying to gain as much information as possible.

    The good news is I've had it a week, repotted it and its not dead. So far its in a glass pot with pebbles about an inch deep, then an inch or so of green moss that comes up the sides, making a moist bowl for the orchid mix that its sitting in and then another layer of moss to help the roots stay moist but not wet. I have it in a north-west facing window next to my lucky bamboo (which is much like a weed x.x) I'm hoping the weediness growth is contagious. I'm also hoping that someone might be able to advise me on how to keep up orchids, especially milts since it looks like I'll be getting more on a regular basis. And hopefully others who are lost with Milts will get some ideas off this too cause I found nearly nothing on the web.

    Anyways! Thanks in advance and hope there are alot of bright ideas out there

  2. #2
    cindiras's Avatar
    cindiras is offline Senior Member
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    Hi Phoenix! Welcome to Orchidtalk! If your Milt. is a Miltoniopsis, it will like cooler growing temperatures. I have mine under flourescent lights in my basement. The Milt hybreds can take warmer growing temperatures. Make sure the orchid can get air around the roots, and there is air circulating around the plant itself. I have only had Miltoniopsis for a short time, so I am not an expert. Hopefully, others who have grown them longer will chime in with a few tips to share.

  3. #3
    Tmai's Avatar
    Tmai is offline Ya'll are funnin' me!
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    Welcome, Phoenix! I know absolutely nothing about Milts. Whereabouts are you located?

    Tami

  4. #4
    ischel1's Avatar
    ischel1 is offline Senior Member
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    Hi Phoenix and welcome. I grow my Milts in filtered sunlight, keep them moist, temps N55-90D, Humidity 95%, fertilize with a weak solution every week and flush with plain water on the 4th week. Hope this helps. I'm sure that the glass pot you have yours in has holes for drainage in the bottom, right??? This is a must, or after a couple of weeks, maybe sooner, your roots will be rotten!

  5. #5
    PhoenixDawn is offline Junior Member
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    x.x I live in Denver, CO. So not alot of humidity here. And no, the glass jar has no drainage holes, thats why I have the pebbles and moss to keep the roots from sitting in water. Although, I hadn't realized they need good air circulation around the roots so planning to repot as soon as I can find a better pot... The only ones I can think of are my seeding pots. Do Orchids like smaller pots? Or room to grow? I really appreciate the help!

  6. #6
    cindiras's Avatar
    cindiras is offline Senior Member
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    Most orchids seem to like being rootbound. So use a smaller pot for them than you normaly would. Miltoniopsis have finer roots then Cattleyas or Phalaenopsis, so they use a smaller sized bark mix, or small bark bits mixed with charcoal and perlite. You could even pot into 100% perlite if you wanted to (don't do that. Perlite all floats out of the pot when you water). Actually, living in Denver, you will have more of a problem getting the humidity levels high enough for the plant(S) (One is never enough!) Do you have a cool mist vaporizer? Or a humidifier? Both would raise the moisture levels around the plant. Mine are in 50% humidity in my basement in central Iowa.

  7. #7
    PhoenixDawn is offline Junior Member
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    I re-potted in one of my seed starter pots with a small generalized orchid mix. Humidity is an issue here as it sparks everyone's asthma, so I'm trying a pot of damp moss under the orchid to humidify it. Only one leaf has turned yellow, the rest seem to be doing well. Thank you so much for all the advice!!

  8. #8
    cindiras's Avatar
    cindiras is offline Senior Member
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    Have you seen the clear plastic drip trays to put under pots? Get a fairly large one that will protrude around your orchid pot an inch or two on all sides. Fill with marbles, colored stones, things of that sort. Add water not quite to the top of the rocks. Set your orchid pot on top. As the water evaporates from the tray, it increases the humidity in the area right around the plant. You don't want the water over the surface of the rocks or it will wick into the pot and keep the orchid roots too moist (rot). If your pot is currently setting directly on top of the moss, it might wick moisture up from the moss and cause root rot.

  9. #9
    mtequine's Avatar
    mtequine is offline Senior Member
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    Phoenix--welcome! The Denver Orchid Society is a great group that meets at the Denver Botanical Gardens and has a web site. Lots of knowledge and help (and enabling of the addiction) there.

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