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The humidity level issue

This is a discussion on The humidity level issue within the Orchid Ailments / The Compost Pile forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; Treat the reading as relative, and not absolute and you'll have a useful mark. When ...

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  1. #11
    Piper's Avatar
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    Treat the reading as relative, and not absolute and you'll have a useful mark. When it's low, act! Break out the fire hose!!

    Julie

  2. #12
    shalene is offline Senior Member
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    My plastic goes across the ceiling and down the walls, overlaping about a foot to keep in the humidity.

  3. #13
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    the worst part about windowsill growing. I go through at least 1 and a half humidifiers a year. I guess if you have a grow space like a basement you can drape some plastic sheeting to cut down on the area for the humidifiers, but that's just not practical for "regular" grow spaces. I don't have a good solution, except more humidifiers, fans to lightly circulate the output, and switching to BIG FLOOFY CATTS.

  4. #14
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    Ok, so I'm trying to figure out what to do about humidity levels in my growing area while I'm gone for a week. Since I got a digital hygrometer, I'm more aware of the normal fluctuations and it worries me.

    I have a 'humidity tray' under my plants and the sensor is dangling among the leaves of my catts. For the most part, the readings stay right around 42%, but I've seen them dip as low as 29% (and I have no clue as to why) with the window open and AC off and water still in the tray. I'm considering enclosing the shelf with plastic, but I'm afraid of getting things too warm (temp readings with direct sun have hit 89 with the AC on a couple times) or even too steamy, which would probably be detrimental to my slowly recovering catt (right?).

    Should I throw a Hail Mary and just leave things alone while I'm gone? Should I dig up my winter humidifier and risk burning it out after a couple days (since I know my boyfriend would probably be too lazy to bother refilling it)? Or should I try the plastic thing? I can post a pic of my little growing area if it would help.

  5. #15
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    The best thing to do would be the humidifier and a few threats to the boyfriend. Enclosing your plants when you're not there to observe them can lead to tragedy. Scrap the pebble trays (they really don't do anything) and keep the humidifer out (especially when you run the A/C).




    Quote Originally Posted by Shaydra View Post

    Should I throw a Hail Mary and just leave things alone while I'm gone? Should I dig up my winter humidifier and risk burning it out after a couple days (since I know my boyfriend would probably be too lazy to bother refilling it)? Or should I try the plastic thing? I can post a pic of my little growing area if it would help.

  6. #16
    Shaydra is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by clintdawley View Post
    The best thing to do would be the humidifier and a few threats to the boyfriend. Enclosing your plants when you're not there to observe them can lead to tragedy. Scrap the pebble trays (they really don't do anything) and keep the humidifer out (especially when you run the A/C).
    Threats to the boyfriend... I could probably call him every other day and ask him if he's checked the tank... So the pebble trays don't really work? I thought they would help, especially when the plants are in the sun, where more evaporation would be present?

    Ok, I'll try to do this... *keeps fingers crossed* Heck, I think if the cats didn't scream about the food situation on a daily basis, he'd probably forget them, too!

  7. #17
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    Default Humidity Trays

    I've never used these as I couldn't see their benefit at all, actually.

    The water does evaporate, but is it at the same level as the plant's leaves (probably not) so that it would be useful? The evaporation rate is so slow that what does evaporate gets lost to the environment unless the space is really small and enclosed. I think humidity trays are one of the biggest orchid growing myths.



    Your time is much better spent refilling the humidifier.

  8. #18
    Shaydra is offline Senior Member
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    What you're saying makes some sense. The pepple tray would have to be MUCH larger than the plants to actually overcome the evaporation difference between the leaves and the tray.

    Oh well.. Even without the water, I think it looks kinda cool anyway! Mine just has some multi-colored river rock in it. (And it was cheap, too.)


  9. #19
    celiviel is offline Junior Member
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    When I was using a small (5") pebble tray with my one phal in a pot, it didn't seem to help really at all.

    But now I have a massive tray, maybe 20" across, with four plants on it (two phals and two pots of ivy) and it seems to be making a noticeable difference. A hygrometer on the tray is consistently registering about 70% humidity while the rest of my apartment is typically 30%. And my one dehydrated phal seems to have stopped wilting. *knock on wood*

    I suppose it could be the case that the fellow plants are more helpful for humidity than the actual pebble tray, but I'm going to stick with it.

    Plus I agree that it looks cool.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by clintdawley View Post
    I've never used these as I couldn't see their benefit at all, actually.

    The water does evaporate, but is it at the same level as the plant's leaves (probably not) so that it would be useful? The evaporation rate is so slow that what does evaporate gets lost to the environment unless the space is really small and enclosed. I think humidity trays are one of the biggest orchid growing myths.



    Your time is much better spent refilling the humidifier.
    Now Clint - I use both humidity trays and a humidifier. What the trays do is to help the humidifier by keeping the environment a little less dry. I do see a difference in the area right by the plants with humdity trays versus the ones without. That being said, I agree that once you get more than a couple orchids, a humidifier is a tremendous asset.

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