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Mini Orchidarium

This is a discussion on Mini Orchidarium within the Semi Hydro / Lights / Greenhouses / Accessories forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; Ok So here is my mini orchidarium. It's still a work in progress... nothing fancy. ...

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  1. #1
    Slyjester's Avatar
    Slyjester is offline Member
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    Thumbs up Mini Orchidarium

    Ok

    So here is my mini orchidarium. It's still a work in progress... nothing fancy. I ordered my terrarium from a giant online book seller. The terrarium, or rather atrium, is made of acrylic plastic sides. The dimensions are 18" L x 12" W x 20" H. It's not very big, and only the smaller orchids fit.

    The top and front bottom have a screen panel. The door opens from one side only, the smaller window panel DOES NOT open. The bottom half is NOT water proof, but I just bought some plastic silverware holders and filled with hydroton and water. Instant Humidity! I have rigged it so that I can slide a little piece of cardboard over the front bottom screen panel to hold MORE humidity in the terrarium. I can get it to 75% humidity EASY when the door is closed. That may not seem very high for most of you, but I live in Minnesota and it's not very humid here...just cold.

    Anyway, this really works, but for smaller orchids. I have 4 other Phals that just wouldn't fit because of the giant leaf spans. Now that I know that this works, I may invest more $$ into a REAL terrarium from the same giant online book seller.

    PS. The last photo is of my
    Phal. Mem. Karen Sale 'Jean'. The leaves have changed to a weird color after I switched it over to Hydroton. Any idea why? Also, I've had this for OVER a year and it has only pumped out 2 new leaves. You can see one of the new ones in the photo. Thanks in advance!
    Attached Images Attached Images     

  2. #2
    Halloamey's Avatar
    Halloamey is offline Senior Member
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    It is looking very beautiful ! There seems to be something wrong with the Phal on the right in the last picture. Have you repotted it recently?

  3. #3
    Becca is offline Member
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    Did you wait for new root growth before switching the phal to the hydroton?

  4. #4
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    Looking good, Jake! That looks really roomy too. I would not have guessed it was only 18" L x 12" W x 20" H. Keep us updated on how it works for your orchids.

    Cheers,
    BD

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    nicki is offline Senior Member
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    Very cool. I had brought up the idea of an orchidarium recently so it's nice to see someone else's. Good luck with it.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halloamey View Post
    It is looking very beautiful ! There seems to be something wrong with the Phal on the right in the last picture. Have you repotted it recently?
    I completely agree. It looks weird. I transferred it over to hydroton in early August. I slowly noticed it turning red shortly thereafter. I can see the veins on the leaves. The leaves are plump and there's active roots growing and they turn green when I water them so the plant seems healthy, just a weird muddy color. Maybe it's because I didn't wash the hydroton well enough? That was my first instinct.

    Did you wait for new root growth before switching the phal to the hydroton?
    It had started a new root growth cycle. I started seeing new roots emerging from the base of the plant. I thought that would be the perfect time to re-pot so that's what I did in August. Also, the photo doesn't do it justice. It's a lot more RED than that, but it's hard to capture in a photo. It's a very slow grower...maybe putting it in this orchidarium will speed things along (I hope).

  7. #7
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    the leaves turned red? That may be a sign of too high a light level.

  8. #8
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    Yes, red usually means high light. August is a little late to be switching to sh; usually want to do that right at the beginning of the growing season like late may...also, the leaves look loppy, which may indicate root death after you switched it over to sh...it will have to go thru root transition. I hope it makes it!! Make sure you have good air movement in that atrium too!! You will most definitely need a fan with high humidity.
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  9. #9
    Becca is offline Member
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    I agree, the lower leaf on that phal looks desiccated. With new root growth when you repotted into the hydroton, you would think things would have transitioned, but things don't always go as planned! Just keep the humidity up and make sure you have good air movement like others recommended and keep your fingers crossed! It may need a lot of patience and TLC! Don't forget it wouldn't hurt it to water more often then you usually would with semi-hydro culture, it helps with the gas exchanges for the roots!

  10. #10
    Slyjester's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Becca View Post
    I agree, the lower leaf on that phal looks desiccated. With new root growth when you repotted into the hydroton, you would think things would have transitioned, but things don't always go as planned! Just keep the humidity up and make sure you have good air movement like others recommended and keep your fingers crossed! It may need a lot of patience and TLC! Don't forget it wouldn't hurt it to water more often then you usually would with semi-hydro culture, it helps with the gas exchanges for the roots!

    Thanks everyone for all the help. This may be a VERY DUMB question, but why do we need good air movement? Is it to speed up the evaporation of the water? I've always kept my plants around the house. Never really thought much about air movement.

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