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  • 1 Post By joyzoggia

Oncidium, sphagnum moss drying super fast

This is a discussion on Oncidium, sphagnum moss drying super fast within the New Growers: Ask the Senior Members forums, part of the New Growers category; Hi guys! My boyfriend got me this oncidium maybe 4 months ago. Because of her ...

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  1. #1
    joyzoggia's Avatar
    joyzoggia is offline Member
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    Unhappy Oncidium, sphagnum moss drying super fast

    Hi guys! My boyfriend got me this oncidium maybe 4 months ago. Because of her shape it was impossible to put it in a pot, the bulb were very inclined and the roots wouldn't stay inside the pot..The orchid would literally start falling to the side all the time. So I decided to mount it, which I had read that it should be fine. I had never mounted an orchid before so I did a few research before and it seemed easy. Also I had never used sphagnum moss before so I kind of went with what I read online.. I also didn't know much about the specie itself and since at the time I only had phals I kind of went with the same mind set ( letting the plant kind of get dry before watering, not much sunlight... etc) and I was wrong.. Anyway, when I mounted it I put a big chunk of sphagnum moss under and on top of the roots. and I would water it once a week like I though it should be. What happened was the sphagnum moss literally dried out all the roots. The sphagnum moss after a day would get super dry ( crispy literally) and I guess would suck the water out of the roots.. Then I didn't understand why would my moss do that since everywhere said that the moss retains so much water and that you actually have to be careful to not drown the roots.. So I pretty much got scared and took all the moss out of the mount and left her bare root. I started to hate sphagnum moss after that day! And got scared to use it hahaha.

    The plant started to develop a few roots, 2 little roots on top, but they quickly stopped growing and turned their tips white.. Also the new bulb started growing which was weird because the old bulbs got wrinkled so I thought that the plant wouldn't be in conditions to have a new bulb growing but it did! The plant stopped growing for a while, new roots wouldn't appear so I Still I wasn't satisfied with the development of the plant I felt that I was still missing something so I tried to learn about Oncidiums online to see what I was doing wrong. So I figured out that the plant needed more sun, and needed to be kind of wet at all times, that I shouldn't let the moss get dry practically.. So I put back SOME moss around the roots, there's some new roots under the bulbs that appeared now, which all have green tips. And the new bulb actually started to form inside the new leafs, I could see it very full inside the leafs. However the moss still gets dry by the end of the day! I don't know what to do about it, I don't want it to kill the new roots again.. Could this be normal? I bought coconut husk fiber and I'm waiting for it to be delivered to my house since I read some good reviews about it..I have been giving the plant some heavy watering in the morning and by late afternoon I lightly mist her so she doesn't go super dry during the night.. But my fear is leaving it wet at night and develop some fungus or rot. The moss doesn't stay SUPER wet at night but I try to leave it wet to the touch. Would it be fine ? Or watering it everyday is not a good idea?

    Btw I live in Miami, so its pretty humid around here. For this reason it was kind of weird to me to see the moss getting crispy so fast.. I leave the plant inside but even inside my apartment its not super dry, the orchid is right at the window which is a south- west window, the glass is pretty thick so it blocks a good amount of the heavy sunlight. I leave the window open sometimes so they get some good humid air.

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    Thanks!
    Joy

    ---------- Post Merged at 01:19 PM ----------

    I also left the old dried out root on the mount because it was pretty much the only thing holding her on it.

  2. #2
    kspalding's Avatar
    kspalding is offline Senior Member
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    Hello from Apopka. Being Floridian myself I notice the drying out alot with my mounted dendrobium. Oncidiums are a bit particular to not liking to dry out too much but short dry spells don't harm the plant either. As you know our seasons have been way off lately. I mean it should not be 80 degrees in December not even here. Add this years heat wave to last years cold vortex and I have noticed some of my orchids getting very confused. As long as there are signs of growing the plant should be fine and just needs time to re-adjust/stablize. Just try and keep it warm since it will be very sensitive to cold weather until it strengthens. As for the humidity, it is great for aerial roots to recieve moisture but yes moss will dry out due to evaporation, especially when its warm. You haven't mentioned feeding schedule for plant. With few roots to take in nutrients you may have to provide some extra nutrition to the plant.

  3. #3
    Cjcorner's Avatar
    Cjcorner is offline Senior Member
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    I have to say, good post. This years weather has got my vanda's blooming and many things are blooming at the wrong time. Today is overcast and at 2 pm temps began falling fast. Hopefully things will get back to normal soon.

  4. #4
    chingjervis's Avatar
    chingjervis is offline Senior Member
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    Maybe due to global warming, weather is unpredictable. Sometimes its Hot and too Hot.

    That is why i have shifted to S/H. But you have to experiment before shifting to S/H.

  5. #5
    joyzoggia's Avatar
    joyzoggia is offline Member
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    Thanks for the answer guys. As far as feeding I have to say I had stopped because I had freaked out w little with water itself so I was giving more attention on giving the plant water instead of food.. But I guess that wasn't very smart. I've been doing once a week with a all purpose Now. And I did buy the S/H because I read a lot about them and I liked the concept, I don't like much the bark, it breaks out a lot. The problem is that the plant's shape wouldn't allow me to out it in a pot.. I could try put now its got some roots very attached to the mount now. I guess I will keep watering it the way I've been doing, keeping an eye on when the moss dries out and not leaving it too long like that. Watering it everyday. And feeding it once a week.
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