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Orchid — Potting Mixes

Potting Mixes

Orchids are easy plants to grow. The main problem first time growers have is the wrong potting mix (medium). Most orchids do not like to sit in water. The type of pot, the medium used to pot, along with your growing conditions will all play a part in having a happy plant.

Here are some different types of medium used by orchid growers. Some mediums can be mixed together to help control your watering and conditions.

Good quality orchid bark can sometimes be hard to find. The best place to get this from is your local orchid nursery. 

Please check out our “Accessory” section on our website for more information about the orchid bark we sell and pricing. 

Orchid Barks

There are also various sizes or grades of these barks.

 

Mini Size Orchid Bark

We use this only in our tubes (baby plants) mixed in with other mediums.

 

Medium Size Orchid Bark

We use this for smaller plants coming out of tubes or just a small growing size plant that may need a bit more moisture (smaller bark generally won't dry out as quick due to less airflow).

 

Large Size Orchid Bark

We use this in lager sized orchid plants like Cymbidiums and mixed with medium size bark for cattleyas.

 

Cork Mounts

Used for mounting orchids/stags/elks, etc.

Cork is the best mount as it lasts for years.

 

Perlite

There is a few different brands of perlite. Perlite is normally sold in 100 Litre bags. We mostly use a coarse grade mix (approx 5mm in size).

 

Charcoal

Approximately 10mm - 15mm in size is good.

 

Coconut Husk/Chip

There is a few different brands of husk and one needs to be careful when buying as there can be large differences. Husk normally comes in a dry and compressed form and before you use it you will need to soak it to expand and hydrate it. Some brands will need to be washed and this is usually to remove unwanted salts. Pre-washed and PH ready is better if possible. In uncovered growing areas never pot directly in chip. When in wet and rainy conditions over long periods it holds too much moisture and may rot your plants. A lot of growers use coconut husk/chip as it is less expensive and also takes up less room in the shed or storage cupboard because it is compressed. We do not use a lot of coconut husk/chip due to the market of people we sell plants to. Most growers do not have a covered growing area therefore bark gives them a much greater success with growing their orchids when they get them home. Orchid bark also lasts a lot longer as a potting mix between re-potting.

 

Peat

This is used in a covered shade house on our seedling and tube stock plants. Bag size is 60kg. Some growers that use a peat and perlite potting mix using typically 5x perlite to 1x peat and that's it. The main disadvantage for us is the pots are light and if your growing area is not well sheltered your beautiful pots might fall over, etc.

 

Sphagnum Moss

We use this on some seedlings and tube plants, Phalaenopsis orchids, and mounts (including dockrillia orchid mounts), with great results.

Please check out our “Accessory” section on our website for more information about the sphagnum moss we sell and pricing. 

 

Happy Growing!