Orchids forum: New into orchids

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Name: Lee-Roy
Bilzen, Belgium (Zone 8a)
Irises Lilies Hostas Ferns Composter Region: Belgium
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Arico
Oct 17, 2015 2:08 PM CST
Alright, so I've decided I want an indoor, tropical orchid (and yes I'm aware of the possible addiction that rises with orchid succes :p ).

We've just finished our new bathroom and I have some space next to the bath that looks kinda empty at the moment, so ideal for a plant. There's a small window next to it(west facing, but with huge trees opposite of the street, so little light in summer):

Thumb of 2015-10-17/Arico/1e7f65
Thumb of 2015-10-17/Arico/f12c75


I'd like to make something like this:

Thumb of 2015-10-17/Arico/0da67e

So I need an orchid that is/can: tolerate low light, low temps at night (and possibly during the day too), variable humidity, epiphytic. Preferable flower color white or green.

Personally I came across Coelogyne pandurata, it looks absolutely stunning. But I read that the flowers only last a week, so that's another thing; long(er) lasting flowers.

Ideas welcome!

[Last edited by Arico - Oct 17, 2015 2:21 PM (+)]
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Name: Melissa
Memphis, TN (Zone 8a)
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shadytrake
Oct 18, 2015 3:38 AM CST
Welcome to the board. Welcome!

It really depends on what you classify as "low temperature." Based on your broad generalities and the example, I would suggest a Dendrobium Mini Chip or Dendrobium Aussie Chip. Extremely long lasting flowers. They can tolerate a range of temperatures and appear to be pretty easy to grow.

I wouldn't suggest starting with a species right off the bat with such limiting growing conditions. As FYI, most of the white-ish flower orchids are warmer growers. The cooler growers tend to be extremely bright colored because of the limited pollinators in cooler regions in nature. They have to be bright in order to attract the pollinators from a great distance. That is also why they have longer lasting flowers.

If you truly have cool growing conditions, you might try Dendrobium laevifolium or cuthbertsonii. They are compact cool growers that do not require a lot of light. The flowers last for months. In the right growing conditions, they are easy to grow. Where I live, they are impossible without special cool, humid greenhouses.

http://www.orchidspecies.com/denlaevifolium.htm
http://www.orchidspecies.com/dencuthbersonii.htm

https://www.google.com/search?q=dendrobium+cuthbertsonii&sou...
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
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tarev
Oct 27, 2015 8:54 AM CST
I would try a Phalaenopsis there. They like low light conditions, low 50's triggers flower spikes in Fall to Spring. Blooms lasts 3 to 6 months at times. Phals are quite common too, so it is a good starting point.
Name: Patty
Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
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SarasotaPatty
Oct 28, 2015 3:50 PM CST
I agree with Tarev! Phals were what I was thinking as I read your post...GOOD LUCK, and welcome to the addicting world of orchids!
Name: Ken Ramsey
Starkville, MS (Zone 8a)
[url=www.tropicalplantsandmore.com]
Orchids Greenhouse Vegetable Grower Ferns Region: United States of America Hummingbirder
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drdawg
Oct 28, 2015 4:01 PM CST
For me at least, Phal. take more care and observation than just about any family of orchid I grow. Scale, mealy bugs, and crown rot all seem to go along with growing my Phal.
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: Patty
Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
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Butterflies Bromeliad Region: Florida Garden Ideas: Level 2
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SarasotaPatty
Oct 29, 2015 10:42 AM CST
Wow...what are you doing to them Ken? lol! I've never had ANY of those problems! I've never had any problem with scale or mealy bugs on any of my orchids, but I prevent crown rot by using a paper towel to dry the crowns every time I water them (inside only, if they are outside I do NOT run out with a paper towel every time it rains! lol!)
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
Oct 29, 2015 10:59 AM CST
I have no clue, Patty. I have always seen/had the scale and mealy bug problems. I don't mean it is a regular problem, actually quite seldom, but IF I have ANY orchid infested, it has always been in the Phal. family. Having had so many orchids over the last five years (certainly over a couple thousand), I guess just the shear number lends itself to seeing some sort of pests. I never see any pests on my Cattleya alliance plants though, and that is by far what I have had the most of.
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: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
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Ursula
Oct 29, 2015 11:14 AM CST

Moderator

I am with Ken! In my hands, if I see Mealies, they are for sure on a Phal! But then in my defense, most Phals I grow are always at the verge of death anyway, people give them to me when they are done with them, so this miracle grower here might rescue them from the compost pile.
Not! They hang on, get buggy and then I have enough and throw them out.
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
Oct 29, 2015 11:43 AM CST
Thumbs up Gee, I thought it was just me. 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: Patty
Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
Orchids Garden Art Bookworm Garden Photography Birds Cat Lover
Butterflies Bromeliad Region: Florida Garden Ideas: Level 2
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SarasotaPatty
Oct 29, 2015 12:47 PM CST
I must be lucky then! Hurray! My biggest problems with phals right now is that after the GORGEOUS blooms I had last year...they all seemed to go into some sort of slump with limp leaves and just overall looking like they are on the way out! They've been like that for months now, but I'm just starting to see some new leaves...so maybe they wre just tired and resting...... Shrug!

But maybe one or two in a bathroom for Arico may not draw those problems???
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
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tarev
Oct 29, 2015 1:41 PM CST
Patty, my Phals do the same thing, they go on that resting phase hiatus after the long blooming period. I always have them indoors and like you I dry off the leaves when I get it wet during watering, and have our ceiling fan running after I water them. One of them is busy growing a new leaf, while the others are just resting. I have learned to treat them like a cool weather loving succulent. Less water when it is cold, a bit more when it is warm. I do not have those mealy bug problems either, maybe because I keep them drier and our humidity here is really dismal.
Name: Alice
Saint Helena Island, SC (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Garden Photography Container Gardener Butterflies Bromeliad
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ardesia
Oct 29, 2015 6:57 PM CST
My son has a houseful of varied plants including a couple of Phals. This last visit was the first time I did not see them in bloom, they usually have a spike or two going. I've tried talking to him about his choice of planting medium but kids never listen to parents and frankly, his orchids always look and bloom much better than mine. The specks on the smaller plant are not critters, just dust.
Thumb of 2015-10-30/ardesia/647b44
Thumb of 2015-10-30/ardesia/1ea057

Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.
Name: Patty
Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
Orchids Garden Art Bookworm Garden Photography Birds Cat Lover
Butterflies Bromeliad Region: Florida Garden Ideas: Level 2
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SarasotaPatty
Oct 30, 2015 6:34 AM CST
Alice, just last weekend a lady was telling me about her many-years old dendrobium that is huge and blooms almost all year long right by her front door..... potted in regular potting mix! I didn't even know what to say to her, except don't mess with success!

Now I see your son's phals in potting mix and looking a whole lot better than mine do right now!

Is this a new trend or something? Shrug!
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
Oct 30, 2015 6:40 AM CST
I think the secret here (and this is nothing but a guess) is that the "modified potting mix" is kept really dry, is open, and that it still drains very well. Simply looking at the picture does not really tell us what the media's components are.
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: 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 30, 2015 6:54 AM CST
Will had his in plain old Miracle Gro potting mix (he NEVER listens to me, Sighing! )
Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.
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 30, 2015 8:13 AM CST
OooooooKkkkkkkkkkkk. Surely he keeps it on the dry-side. Don't tell me he keeps it moist. 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: 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 30, 2015 8:26 AM CST
Nope, he overwaters too. It drives me crazy, he also has a lot of succulents and I keep telling him "let them dry out" and I send him articles on how most houseplants die from overwatering but it all falls on deaf ears and his plants continue to thrive. Go figure.
BTW, this "kid" is 42 years old. Smiling
Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.
Name: Patty
Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
Orchids Garden Art Bookworm Garden Photography Birds Cat Lover
Butterflies Bromeliad Region: Florida Garden Ideas: Level 2
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SarasotaPatty
Oct 30, 2015 8:26 AM CST
Alice, if my phals looked like that I might not listen to you either! Rolling on the floor laughing

I DO think you are onto the secret there Ken, DRY is the ticket....I sort of got that from the den. lady too.

Signing off for a week....see ya'll after the 7th!
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 30, 2015 8:38 AM CST
Glare Hilarious! Hilarious! Hilarious!
Minds are like parachutes; they work better when they are open.
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 30, 2015 8:39 AM CST
Tell your Grandma I wish her an (early) happy birthday. All birthdays are to be celebrated, but 98 is extra-special. Hurray!
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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