Orchids forum: substitute wood bark for Douglas fir

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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
Sep 25, 2014 12:17 PM CST
Has anyone found a suitable substitute for Douglas fir bark? I'm not talking about small amounts. I go through 10-12 cf. of the stuff each year. I wonder if my cypress mulch would work. It is nothing like that horrible stuff bagged at the big box stores, made up of who-knows-what. The mulch I get by the cubic yard is high quality with little or no foreign matter in it. I just have always used Douglas fir bark but now I am paying about $20.00 shipping per cf.

I used to find free shipping but it is now impossible to find shipping bargains, at least the sites I have checked. I ordered three, 2 cf. bags in June and the shipping was right at $50.00 Sticking tongue out My orders for expanded rock, (truly) coarse perlite, horticultural charcoal, and coconut chunks are always at least 6 cf. per order.
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: 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
Sep 25, 2014 12:30 PM CST
Ken, I've had new orchids arrive from Carter & Holmes in a wood chip medium. It says on their supply page that it's "Cypress wood blend" and has small shreds of wood chip and perlite in it. Here's the page with a picture of what it looks like:

http://www.carterandholmes.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen...

Seems like the wood is ok, so you could try your cypress mulch, but I'd wash it with the hose, and let it dry in the sun before potting up orchids in it.
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
Sep 25, 2014 2:21 PM CST
I get C & H catalogs 2-3 times a year and I saw that mix (pretty simple, compared to all I put in mine........LOL). That's why I wondered about the cypress mulch I get. My mulch looks almost identical to the picture and I certainly have plenty of expanded rock and sponge rock (that's just coarse perlite, right?). That's a good idea to wash it and then let the sun bake it. I can buy a cubic yard for around $40 and that's equivalent to 27 cf. So instead of spending $10-15 for a cubic foot of Douglas fir bark (plus $10 to ship a cf.), I will be paying approximately $1.50 and no shipping since I haul the mulch from our Co-Op in my truck. That sure sounds better than what I'm paying now.

Thanks, Elaine.
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: Fiat
Modesto -The Central Valley of (Zone 9b)
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fiat
Sep 23, 2016 5:00 PM CST
Hi Ken, Sorry to cut in (or hijack) on your thread here.. I have been searching through numerous threads in this forum and couldn't find anyone that provided closed, at least related info I need for my zygo orchid. So simply state my needs: what are the good sources (suppliers, vendors) for good orchid barks, e.g., Rexius, Orchiata (these are the recommendation from my zygo supplier; he use Rexius)? I am basically looking for online suppliers with good price and good shipping cost. (no local vendors I can turn to here) Thanks for help.
If a plant looks good, smells good, don't eat it, grow it!
Fiat
Name: Carol
Santa Ana,Ca. (Zone 10b)
Sunset zone 22
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Sep 23, 2016 5:44 PM CST
Fiat, have you checked Amazon or e-Bay? They both have it. Ken buys in bulk, and the cost would likely be very different.
Name: lindsey
wesley chapel, fl
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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sugarcane
Sep 23, 2016 7:25 PM CST
I used to use repot me.com...they have tons of products and you can make up a custom blend if you want, Fiat
lindsey
Name: Fiat
Modesto -The Central Valley of (Zone 9b)
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fiat
Sep 23, 2016 7:51 PM CST
Amazon has some orchiata sold from outside vendor with price and shipping cost not of competition... no rexius found at amazon. I don't know how and want to buy from ebay...



If a plant looks good, smells good, don't eat it, grow it!
Fiat
Name: Fiat
Modesto -The Central Valley of (Zone 9b)
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fiat
Sep 23, 2016 8:13 PM CST
Thanks, Lindsey. I check up repotme.com and found they have Fir bark w/o Rexius name and their orchiata's price (and fir bark) are higher than OrchidSupplyStore.com Just compare prices.
If a plant looks good, smells good, don't eat it, grow it!
Fiat
Name: Alice
Saint Helena Island, SC (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Garden Photography Container Gardener Butterflies Bromeliad
Birds Ponds Region: South Carolina Tropicals
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ardesia
Sep 24, 2016 5:57 AM CST
When I stopped at Carter and Holmes a while back I fell in love with a young plant still in a flat and I convinced the owner to let me have one. Since I was traveling and it was bare root, I also bought a mesh container and just enough medium to pot it up. I had asked them about the pot size and the best medium for it and they gave me the shredded cedar. I like the material, it is lightweight, pretty finely shredded and cedar would naturally repel insects. I don't know if it will last as long as fir before it breaks down but I should think it would be fine for your purpose Ken.

Fiat, I was told by a grower that the key to keeping the Zygo happy was enough moisture, they prefer a bit more water than most. I potted mine in the Better Gro stuff you get from any Lowe's or HD and it has been a very happy camper.
Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.
Name: Fiat
Modesto -The Central Valley of (Zone 9b)
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fiat
Sep 24, 2016 2:07 PM CST
Thanks, Alice. Are you talking about Better Gro orchid mix in HD? Will check it out. BTW, do you have chance to post your Zygo pic (in buds, in bloom, or not)? Thank you for sharing.
If a plant looks good, smells good, don't eat it, grow it!
Fiat
Name: Alice
Saint Helena Island, SC (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Garden Photography Container Gardener Butterflies Bromeliad
Birds Ponds Region: South Carolina Tropicals
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ardesia
Sep 24, 2016 3:54 PM CST
I lost a lot of photos on the computer but I did find this one of the flower. It is not as pretty as yours but it does bloom often.
Thumb of 2016-09-24/ardesia/03be9d

Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.
Name: Carol
Santa Ana,Ca. (Zone 10b)
Sunset zone 22
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Sep 24, 2016 7:00 PM CST
That one's gorgeous, Alice! Lovey dubby
Name: Jim Hawk
Odessa, Florida (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Hibiscus Birds Bromeliad Greenhouse Master Gardener: Florida
Garden Photography Region: United States of America Roses Tropicals Region: Florida Orchids
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hawkarica
Sep 24, 2016 7:47 PM CST
I think so too. No apology necessary for that beauty, Alice.

Jim
Name: Alice
Saint Helena Island, SC (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Garden Photography Container Gardener Butterflies Bromeliad
Birds Ponds Region: South Carolina Tropicals
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ardesia
Sep 24, 2016 8:10 PM CST
Aw thanks. The flower itself is sort of plain but I love those dark, smoky buds.
Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.
Name: Fiat
Modesto -The Central Valley of (Zone 9b)
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fiat
Sep 24, 2016 8:15 PM CST
Oh, Alice! Your zygo bloom is wonderfully beautiful. I think yours is a different variety? There are no spots on the petals of yours, but another kind of beauty! I checked the BetterGro orchid mix and found the media (fir bark, charcoal, ...) are too fine (small size) for me. I need at least medium size barks for a orchid pot (metal 6x6") with large holes on 4 sides. Also have no idea how long the media would last...
If a plant looks good, smells good, don't eat it, grow it!
Fiat
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
Oct 1, 2016 7:35 PM CST
I am not so sure about using cedar. I personally have never seen it used as the base of an orchid mix. Cypress perhaps and certainly Douglas fir bark.

I cannot find my way around this new NGA site. I have been gone for ten days and now returning, I am lost. Where are the various forums? Where is the T-Mails? Where is the Profile?

I should not have stayed gone so long................ Sighing!
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: Carol
Santa Ana,Ca. (Zone 10b)
Sunset zone 22
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Oct 1, 2016 8:24 PM CST
Ken, Look at the top, right, and you will see your Profile/mail/ system messages. As to the forums, you need to read the site talk forum and learn how to set up your home page the way you like it. It's all here, but moved around. Tough for us older folks to change, but we're doing it.
Name: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
Charter ATP Member Spiders! Native Plants and Wildflowers Region: Pennsylvania Greenhouse Cactus and Succulents
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Ponds Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Region: New Jersey
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Ursula
Oct 1, 2016 8:25 PM CST

Moderator

Ken, good to see you, we were missing you.
Regarding the changes here, it is late now, I and surely all of us here, gladly walk you through the changes tomorrow and show you how to fix your page that it will look similar to the old with new good stuff thrown in.
Don't sweat it! Smiling

Name: Alice
Saint Helena Island, SC (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Garden Photography Container Gardener Butterflies Bromeliad
Birds Ponds Region: South Carolina Tropicals
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ardesia
Oct 1, 2016 9:04 PM CST
Hey Ken, welcome back and yes, this oldster did it (Elaine helped) so I know you can get around here.

BTW, you are correct, I said cedar in an earlier post but I meant cypress - just showing my age again I guess.
Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.

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