Orchids forum→🥶 Please STOP using ice cubes on your Orchids, read on!🥶

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Name: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
Plumerias Orchids Cactus and Succulents Region: New Jersey Region: Pennsylvania Native Plants and Wildflowers
Greenhouse Ponds Keeper of Koi Forum moderator Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Adeniums
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Ursula
Jun 11, 2019 11:42 AM CST

Moderator

Using Ice cubes on Orchids is simply a gimmick! It originated a few years ago at a Phalaenopsis nursery, located in Oberlin, Ohio, see
HERE

The nursery created this crazy culture to help beginners watering their Phals! You know better! Nature does not rain ice cubes!

Please stop!
[Last edited by Ursula - Jun 11, 2019 12:34 PM (+)]
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Name: Big Bill
Livonia, Michigan (Zone 6a)
American Orchid Society Judge
Region: United States of America Critters Allowed Growing under artificial light Echinacea Hostas Region: Michigan
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BigBill
Jun 11, 2019 12:14 PM CST
Reasons why you don't use ice cubes:
Phalaenopsis are tropical plants and need water of around 80-90 degrees. Not ice water. It can damage roots
Phalaenopsis roots penetrate deep within their pot or basket. Watering with ice cubes does not allow the water to penetrate deep enough to reach all the roots. This can lead to root loss.
If you fertilize your Phalaenopsis, using ice cubes does not distribute fertilizer at all. It remains concentrated in the upper level of the media. This can burn and injure roots leading to root loss.
Bottom line: most experts agree that a good and healthy root system is the key to successful orchid growing. Watering using ice cubes DOES NOT promote good root growth!
When you grow orchids, it is all about the ROOTS!!!
Name: Naomi
Ohio (Zone 6a)
Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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Blazingstar
Sep 15, 2019 6:43 AM CST
Thank you for posting! I used to water with ice cubes but stopped because it was difficult to freeze them. I find it much easier to just use water.
Name: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
Plumerias Orchids Cactus and Succulents Region: New Jersey Region: Pennsylvania Native Plants and Wildflowers
Greenhouse Ponds Keeper of Koi Forum moderator Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Adeniums
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Ursula
Sep 15, 2019 7:26 AM CST

Moderator

Makes sense, right? Smiling
Name: Alex Junge
MN st paul, (Zone 4a)
Plantsmylove
Nov 6, 2019 9:18 AM CST
I agree using ice is just a gimmick some buddy came up with.

strange too. why would ice work


another thing i don't like about phals is they are potted in spagnum that rots quick and breaks down. . orchid roots need to breathe and sphagnum prevents this. than again most people who buy these on impluse don't keep the orchid after it blooms and its cheaper for the mass makers to do it anyway
Name: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
Plumerias Orchids Cactus and Succulents Region: New Jersey Region: Pennsylvania Native Plants and Wildflowers
Greenhouse Ponds Keeper of Koi Forum moderator Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Adeniums
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Ursula
Nov 6, 2019 3:07 PM CST

Moderator

Exactly!
With my watering practices Sphagnum is the worst medium, if I see orchids at a vendor's table planted into that, I keep right on walking past that vendor. But one time the vendor actually removed the pot and let me see the roots. I thought that was very accommodating.
But it will surely hold the moisture during long times of transit, that's why many growers use it.
Name: Empress of India
Hatfield MA (Zone 5b)
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EmpressOfIndia
Nov 10, 2019 6:20 PM CST
My mother does the ice cube thing; hers blooms every winter. I could pass out from the jealousy. I think the ice cube thing is both kind of dumb and totally sensible. Basically it's 'throw two shot glasses of water into it a week'. I can see the appeal. It's guidance and orchids have a learning curve.

Mine didn't thrive on that method and I up-potted them into clay orchid pots with a bark/moss mixture last spring and now water when they are completely dry by submerging them for an hour or so and then ignoring them for a week or two.

I know it's not recommended, but they have lots of new roots and seem really happy. One might have a spike but I'm trying not to rorsharch that little thing into a future flower.

I'm hopeful. I got the two (phal and mini-phal) year before last. I haven't seen them bloom since our first season together, but they're healthy and I can tell...so....if nothing else I have house plants with big floppy ears.

Some day I hope to graduate to more impressive varieties but I feel like I'm still mastering phals.
For a time. I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

-Wendell Barry
Name: lindsey
wesley chapel, fl
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Orchids
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sugarcane
Nov 10, 2019 6:53 PM CST
...and that, EmpressOfIndia, is how so many of us start.
Welcome to our forum and don't forget to post photos of your blooms into our current months bloom thread when your plants bloom. I'm feeling confident that what you are seeing are in fact spikes.
lindsey
Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
Charter ATP Member Bookworm Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California
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ctcarol
Nov 10, 2019 7:24 PM CST
I agree It wasn't the way I started, but that's because my zone has Cymbidiums and Epidendrums as garden plants, but I found sites like this, and had to expand my knowledge.
Name: Yehudith
Silver Spring, MD (Zone 7a)
meiramalka
Dec 11, 2019 1:41 PM CST
I was at the store the other day looking at the grocery store phals. Yes I bought two. They were so cheap I couldn't help it and they were really nice. Anyway, there was another woman standing beside me and she was complaining that she had bought lots over the years but they never bloomed for her. I gave her some advise but then she dropped on me that she uses ice cubes to water because that's what the instructions said. I tried to discourage her from this practice but she was adamant. Oh well so be it on her head. My conservatory is full of blooms and not an ice cube in sight.
Name: Ursula
Fair Lawn NJ, zone 6b
Plumerias Orchids Cactus and Succulents Region: New Jersey Region: Pennsylvania Native Plants and Wildflowers
Greenhouse Ponds Keeper of Koi Forum moderator Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Adeniums
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Ursula
Dec 11, 2019 1:57 PM CST

Moderator

Welcome! Welcome!
"my conservatory is full of blooms! "
Come on, please do share your blooms in our bloom thread !! Smiling
Name: Big Bill
Livonia, Michigan (Zone 6a)
American Orchid Society Judge
Region: United States of America Critters Allowed Growing under artificial light Echinacea Hostas Region: Michigan
Butterflies Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Orchids Cat Lover Birds Bee Lover
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BigBill
Dec 11, 2019 2:27 PM CST
That lady fits my definition of 'Invincably Ignorant'!
When you grow orchids, it is all about the ROOTS!!!

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