Containers forum: Multiple orchids/plants in one container

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Slovenia (Zone 8a)
zuirti
Jan 24, 2017 4:41 AM CST
i was wondering if anyone has experience with multiple plant arrangement in containers. I am sick of all the small pots, for they take much more room than just one big pot with lots of flowers in them. I was wondering if I could plant many orchids and some Bromeliads in the same container (maybe some other plants too). I usually soak the orchids, which would not be possible in a big container. Just collecting some ideas and suggestions and experience with such plantings.
Thank you

Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Jan 24, 2017 10:34 PM CST
Hello zuirti, at times it is a matter of preference. For my preference, typically my plants have their individual containers, unless I really know they have similar growing habits and needs, then I can group them together. Like some succulents that I have, most of them have their own containers, but there are some I can group together.

As for orchids, they always go individual containers for me. Many types of orchids with varying watering, temperature and lighting needs, so it is best to keep them on their own container or mount. It also helps to lessen cross contamination.

Most bromeliads have rather wide leaves, so it can easily outgrow other plants so some are really kept on their own container or with their own type. Some bromeliads are epiphytes, so you can even mount them.
Name: UrbanWild
Kentucky (Zone 6b)
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UrbanWild
Mar 5, 2017 8:54 AM CST
I have always wanted to try mixed orchids on an old tree trunk in the attempt to mimic orchids in nature. Years ago I spent a month in South America and the orchid (and other plant) growth & diversity was amazing.
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Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL 🌵🌷⚘🌹🌻 (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Mar 6, 2017 3:19 PM CST
That's what I want to do with mine too, either a live tree for the mount or other kind of mount, in which I can include Tillandsias (air plants) too, that would also, conveniently by design of having no soil around the roots, make it impossible to overwater. Anything that can help this serial over-waterer, always in recovery, is a welcome blessing.

I'm seeing & hearing so many great things about full water culture for orchids, that I want to investigate that too. It looks so clean and gorgeous, being able to see all parts of the orchids, and again, no risk of overwatering. I've stuck my toe in this pool, so to speak, but sticking the protruding tip of my only orchid, a Phal, in a little cup of water. Soon after I did that, the stalks started to make more flower buds. No way to quantify cause/effect but I'm glad it's happening.

Regarding group planting in general, which I do a lot of, I group-pot plants that would have been placed next to each other & treated in the same way. Like you said, Zuirti, it's not the plants taking up so much space, but all of those pots. I have to draw the line at my house at 100 pots. It seems like enough (...until some potential point when I can't keep all of the plants I have in that number of pots, which seems unlikely because nobody has said a thing about the size of these pots, some of which are still small enough to pick up with 1 hand, plenty of room to grow. Hahaha! )
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