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Watering Orchids Question

This is a discussion on Watering Orchids Question within the New Growers: Ask the Senior Members forums, part of the New Growers category; Currently I water at the sink but I think I'm doing something wrong. I water ...

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  1. #1
    DEC's Avatar
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    Default Watering Orchids Question

    Currently I water at the sink but I think I'm doing something wrong. I water the pots well untill water is flowing from the drain holes and the pot is heavier. I then let the pot sit and drain for a while then I use a watering can to apply my weak fertilizer solution. When I fertilize, the solution immediately begins to pour out of the already saturated pot. I feel I may not be getting the benefit from the fertilizer as it runs out so quickly. I have been doing it this way as I read you should never fertilize a dry plant. Plese let me know your thoughts on my procedure and any reccomendations you may have on a better way.
    Thank you

  2. #2
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    No, you are not doing anything wrong. the water will run quickly out of the pot-that is expected. It is better to weakly fertilize than over fertilize. I agree with not fertilizing a dry plant.

    Susan

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    I don't fertilize immediately after watering, for that reason. I figure that I don't want to feed them when they're dry, but I want a little fertilizer to actually be absorbed. I typically water heavily and fertilize a few hours to a day later.

    Anyone else?

  4. #4
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    It would be better to water enough to open the roots before applying fertilizer. When roots are ready to accept the fertlizer, they will change from white to light green (the air roots).

    Cheers,
    BD

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brutal_Dreamer View Post
    It would be better to water enough to open the roots before applying fertilizer. When roots are ready to accept the fertlizer, they will change from white to light green (the air roots).

    Cheers,
    BD
    Hmmm. Interesting. I always thought I didn't want to water dry roots because they would absorb too much. But it sounds like they absorb BETTER if they are a little wetter. Am I reading this right?

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    I water my orchids with plain water...I then let them dry for an hr. or two, then I water with a weak fertilizer. This is done three times a month, and the fourth time I use only plain water. Seems to work for my plants...Betty

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by panam View Post
    Hmmm. Interesting. I always thought I didn't want to water dry roots because they would absorb too much. But it sounds like they absorb BETTER if they are a little wetter. Am I reading this right?
    Yes, you are reading correctly.

    Cheers,
    BD

  8. #8
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    The common misconception is that if you aren't supposed to water very often you then also don't give them too much water. But when you water orchids you should water them very thoroughly. Some water, let drip then water again a few minutes later. This allows the roots to take in as much water as possible.

  9. #9
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    I go for a 10 minute soak. Orchid and pot go in the bucket, other chores get done for several minutes, then drain the pot(s) and back on their shelf! i use a time release fertilizer pellot at a rate of 1/4 teaspoon per pot, so I don't worry about too much fertilizer at one time.

  10. #10
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    I usually spray the fertilizer on them after they are watered. this way I don't waste fertilizer and I can mist a couple times if I feel the need.

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