Ask a Question forum: Orchid humidity problem...

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roby2000
Jun 26, 2014 7:16 AM CST
You all are doing a great job... Its really nice to see you all .... God bless you..
I have a question which I think people feel is impossible ...
I live in the northern part of INDIA which is two months totally dry with no moisture(also hot dry air) its dessert atmosphere almost . I want to grow orchids on trees in my garden .. so how to increase moisture around ?
Question 2: Can I use old wooden dead barks (thick trunk) ? can I tie orchids on it? will the necessary fungus grow under orchids' roots if I use old trunk or I need a live tree?
My main question is that how to give moisture outdoor when the air is hot and dry constantly for 7 HOURS...??
Regards
Robert
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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dyzzypyxxy
Jun 26, 2014 9:13 AM CST
Hello and Welcome! Robert. We sometimes have spells of lower humidity in fall/winter here in Florida too. I have a mist system on a timer with micro-irrigation heads that waters my orchids with a fine mist in the mornings. Then, on dry days I also go out and just 'mist' the surrounding foliage and the screening on my pool enclosure with the hose a few times per day or whenever I walk out there. If it is really dry, I wet down the pavers as well. Any water evaporating around your orchid area will help raise the humidity, unless it is windy. My orchids seem to appreciate it. I do let their foliage dry late in the afternoon/evening so that they do not sit with moisture on the leaves over night, though. This can invite fungus growth.

If you can't walk out there that often, you could set up an automatic timer to 'mist' every hour or two, through the middle of the day. My simple hose timer will water up to 3 times per day. If there is also wind be sure the water is released on the upwind side of the orchid's area so that it will drift down to them, not away.

As to the old dead bark, or trunks they would make wonderful orchid mounts. By all means use them. Many orchids grow naturally on dead fall stuff in forests. Be aware that orchids mounted on wood mounts do need to be watered more often than those in a basket or pot, as they dry out more easily. This is very good for the orchid, but more inconvenient for the orchid grower. Rolling my eyes.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
dyzzypyxxy
Jun 26, 2014 10:38 AM CST
By the way, please do take a look at the Orchids forum. Many orchid growers there who are much more knowledgeable and experienced than me.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
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drdawg
Jun 26, 2014 12:13 PM CST
Welcome! Robert. I agree with Elaine. Growing orchids is doable even in your climate. Misters are the key though. What sort of tree canopy do you have, protecting the orchids from the sun?
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Jun 26, 2014 12:22 PM CST
Welcome Robert!

Blocking wind will help keep any humidity you create stay near the orchids. Either planting tall plants with dense foliage around the orchids, or draping fabric or building a fence to block wind might help. I'm guessing that partial shade from nearby tall plants will help the orchids survive the heat.

If you have plants, they will release humidity into the air from their leaves, requiring you to supply water to their roots! Drip bottles can prolong the availability of water to their roots.

You might arrange a large bottle or jug above the orchids, and make a tiny hole so that water drips from the jug onto the orchids, or their roots, or bark around the orchids, or some fabric tied to a branch near the orchids or screening tied around them.

If the hole is small enough and the bottle large enough, it might last for most of those 7 hours. of course, if you can refill it during the hot part of the day, you can let it drip faster.

GOOD LUCK!

(I was just about to ask drdawg to join the discussion, but I see we would have cross-posted.)
[Last edited by RickCorey - Jun 26, 2014 2:26 PM (+)]
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Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
dyzzypyxxy
Jun 26, 2014 12:46 PM CST
Hmm, Rick the drip bottle idea is great for other plants, but you do not want orchids to stay wet all the time. Most like to be watered, leaves and roots and all, then to dry out each day.

For other plants around the orchids, the drip idea is great, though. And also your idea for a wind block, excellent point. IF something like fabric or screening is used to block the wind it will also supply humidity if it is dampened.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
Image
RickCorey
Jun 26, 2014 2:27 PM CST
Thanks, Elaine.

I edited my prior post to strike out the idea of dripping right onto the orchids.

I really do have an "overwatering problem". I even overwater plants that I've never tried to grow!
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
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drdawg
Jun 26, 2014 2:31 PM CST
I agree, you wouldn't want the water to drip for hours on the orchid(s). As in nature, orchids need the moisture and then need to dry. The reason I asked about a tree canopy is because large trees will produce copious amounts of moisture, a process called transpiration. The hotter the day the more water vapor is produced by those leaves. But in severe droughts, that transpiration will be greatly reduced. The roots have to take in the water for the leaves to transpire. On hot days here in Mississippi, the temperature might be 95 F, but under my oak trees, the temperature will be at least 10 degrees cooler. When standing under my oaks, I can actually feel the water vapor on my face during the heat of the day.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Jun 26, 2014 2:32 PM CST
Hilarious! That's funny, Rick. Rolling on the floor laughing
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
Cactus and Succulents Dragonflies Hummingbirder Amaryllis Container Gardener Xeriscape
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tarev
Jul 1, 2014 3:48 PM CST
My area is hot and dry too for about 7 to 8 months really no rain here, with triple digit heat in summer most of the time, so what I did was to choose an area where my orchids will get morning sun then shade/part shade in the afternoon. Most of my orchids are in containers, in mixed bark.

On days that we get a forecast of 100F ++ I make sure to give them a good shower in the morning, I do not seem to have a problem overwatering them, it just dries out very fast anyways. I sometimes have to do a 2nd shower for them, just have to, our humidity is so low sometimes in single digit. Plus I have an outdoor fountain beside them, so I think it helps when air blows through the water as it flows. I think what helps the orchids survive during these dry hot days is the air flow around them and the shade. Something that helps them cool down from getting overheated.
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Jul 1, 2014 4:25 PM CST
Tarev, do you have any trees that you can use? Trees would give both shade and humidity.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
Cactus and Succulents Dragonflies Hummingbirder Amaryllis Container Gardener Xeriscape
Image
tarev
Jul 1, 2014 4:38 PM CST
Oh I use the shade of the city trees, it helps them a lot. That is why I am suggesting to roby2000 to find an area that will give afternoon shade to his orchids. And I group the orchids together, to help them share their humidity amongst themselves while they also get a whiff of air that passes through the fountain. At times I also deliberately sit the oncidiums on a bucket of water for a couple of days, they like that too, can't get enough water.

roby2000
Jul 2, 2014 2:08 AM CST
Thank you guys.... great to hear from you all !!! its soooooo wonderful to see people working on some of the impossible things..... I took time in experimenting... your ideas are good....
LETS FIND A WAY TO GROW ORCHID IN DESSERT and we will get the actual concept clear....
We try lots of method to give humidity but actually we fail.... Creating humidity all the time near orchid is a challenge ...
HOW TO CREATE HUMIDITY FOR 24 HOURS ....lets try on this topic....( the method should be used without using electricity ...) CAN WE DO?????
I am working on different ways to create humidity outdoor in dry climates (areas)..
If we get success ... We can win..
Robert
INDIA
(city: KANPUR, utter Pradesh , TEMPETATURE= 45 degree Celsius , Climate dry, Humidity : around 20 percent)
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
Cactus and Succulents Dragonflies Hummingbirder Amaryllis Container Gardener Xeriscape
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tarev
Jul 2, 2014 12:12 PM CST
I do not think you need to provide 24 hour humidity to the orchids. These plants appreciate a nice cool down at night. It becomes critical in the daytime when transpiration goes faster with the extreme heat and intense sun. Relative humidity increases at night and what you will need is adequate ventilation by then.

There are so many types of orchids. you did not mention what types you are actually growing. There are temperate ones which can take the extremes of temps as long as they also get good lighting/shade, good air circulation and watering as needed.

You can also try using solar powered fountains, that will run the water and provide humidity, as long as the panel receives good direct 8 hours sun.



roby2000
Jul 2, 2014 12:45 PM CST
Yes, you are correct. We don't need 24 hours humidity.
I need a to discuss a way of creating humidity around orchids without using electrical powers. Yes, solar power is good but let's try some more natural methods etc. For example ; natural evoporation methods ... On of our friend suggested that plant trees around orchids to give natural humidity.... Can anybody share drip irrigation methods ?????? I think if we use drip irrigation methods then we don't require electricity..... But let's discuss how to use drip irrigation to create humidity.... One of our friend also suggested pet bottles filled with water for dripping ..... Can we use some evoporation methods??? Please remember the climate hear is so different. Yes, the tree canopy is dense so there if no direct sun but sun is not a problem the problem is the hot dry air which hit the place from anywhere. Example ; think of the hot air comming out of the chiminy at a good speed... Its tricky not possible... Please try. Regards.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
Image
RickCorey
Jul 2, 2014 1:22 PM CST
You might hang jugs from tree branches, and attach cloth to each jug so that the cloth hangs down near the orchids.

Put one or more pin-holes in each jug near the bottom, so that the water drip flows onto the cloths.

Fill the jugs before the hottest part of the day, and they will keep the cloths moist until the jugs are empty. In hot moving air, the water will evaporate very fast.

Rapid air movement will blow any humidity away very quickly. I think you will need something to slow down the wind near the orchids. It might not help much to drip water onto the wind screen (outer layer) since at least half of that water will be blown away quickly.

When I wanted to shield a spot from cold winds, I picked two trees that were close together and some small distance upwind. I wrapped a heavy tarp around one trunk and tied it in place, then extended the tarp to another tree trunk and wrapped and tied it there, so that it blocked the wind the same way a sail catches wind.

It helped that the tree trunks were at an angle to the wind, so that it was diverted with less force. If you have a fabric that is partly "open", it will slow the wind down without creating as many eddies and side winds or "whirlwinds".

You'll find that wind whips around one "sail" without being slowed much except in one small spot. , and you might have to position several sails to get calm air near the orchids. Better would be several small sections of "fence" with flexible branches or boards "woven" around posts with some open space to make several porous windscreens. Or just sections of an open lattice fence with pathways between them.

Of course, this blocks sun and walking paths as well as wind!

Thumb of 2014-07-02/RickCorey/c837a3 Thumb of 2014-07-02/RickCorey/9c755f

Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
Cactus and Succulents Dragonflies Hummingbirder Amaryllis Container Gardener Xeriscape
Image
tarev
Jul 2, 2014 1:48 PM CST
I wonder if you can use an olla pot. I know this is used mostly if buried into the soil. What if you get the biggest olla pot you can find, fill it with water and put it right under your orchids..maybe the evaporation as it seeps out of the pot can provide the humidity you seek. But then again, you still have to fill it up with water, pretty sure evaporation/water leakage will be very fast and much more work to do in the end.

You would be better off with a spray misting system.

roby2000
Jul 2, 2014 7:26 PM CST
Thanx Mr.RickCorey your idea is quite practical. Tarev ,your evoporation method with pots is also used by many people but as u said it will create very less evopotation but i must tell u that I am also working on earthern pots and jute cloth for evoperation and will discuss later after the practical is done . Mr.Ken Ramsey please read Mr RickCorey idea which is great I think so please share your views. Your idea which u gave in the previous conversation I applied. (Planting trees around).
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Region: California Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Composter
Cactus and Succulents Dragonflies Hummingbirder Amaryllis Container Gardener Xeriscape
Image
tarev
Jul 2, 2014 7:50 PM CST
Whatever works for you..apply what you can use..Good Luck! Smiling
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
Composter Bromeliad Master Gardener: Mississippi Cat Lover Tropicals Plumerias
Image
drdawg
Jul 2, 2014 8:29 PM CST
The problem I have is that I don't have that problem. We here in the deep south (USA) have more humidity than we know what to do with. Whistling

All my hundreds of tropical plants are under oak and cedar trees for the spring and summer months. I simply know what the benefits of growing plants under large trees entails. Not only do they afford shade for my plants, but because of their transpiration, humidity and coolness is always present as well.

I am sure all these ideas can/will work. I simply don't have that need and thus have no experience in using those methods.
drdawg (Ken Ramsey) - Tropical Plants & More
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]www.tropicalplantsandmore.com[/url]
If God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees.

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