Daryl’s mix - I mix three tablespoons of Dr. Bronner's Peppermint soap and 3/4 cup of Isopropyl Alcohol into a one quart spray bottle. Fill the remainder of the bottle with water and shake well before using. It's a VERY oily soap that will smother and kill them. Works great with aphids and scale. I add the alcohol because that makes it more effective on mealy bug also. It works great and you can't get any safer than that!
“Do I need a greenhouse to grow orchids?”
I'd love to introduce you to the 70+ orchids growing on my windowsills!
Sometimes it is difficult to convince orchid newbies that orchids can be successfully grown outdoors and on windowsills.
Don’t have large, sunny windows in your home? Why not supplement the existing light with artificial light?
The next lesson in this series will deal with this alternative for growing orchids.
And then it’s on to the must-have elements of orchid culture.
Good growing, Your Fellow Orchid Enthusiasts at the American Orchid Society
Here you will find Questions and Answers to new inquiries or former questions which were previously asked and answered, but a member may have lost the information or a new member is looking for the same information.
The Use of Sugar Water: In the May 2016 Newsletter the Membership was asked if anyone had an experience using sugar water to aid the roots of their orchids which had been overwatered. A member had read an article which suggested, “Soaking the roots in sugar water (1 Tbsp. of sugar in 1 liter of water) will help.” I received a few responses. I contact Ron Hutton an expert from AOS for an answer, in addition to other members who responded regarding their experience who have tried it. Here are the responses.
Here is Ron’s response which was also answered during one of the AOS Greenhouse Webinar chats.
Ron’s response: “The theory behind this is that the sugar is taken up by the plant and it, in effect, helps tide the plant over while the roots are recovering. There is no evidence, I know of, that orchids are able to metabolize sucrose and, if this does anything, it's because the sucrose is broken down by the fungi in the environment and turned into simpler compounds that the plant can take up. That's fine if the roots are healthy - just damaged - and likely won't hurt anything. If, on the other hand, the roots have been damaged by root-rotting fungi, it's that fungi that are going to be fed and encouraged to grow. The bottom line, in my opinion, is that it's not necessary, likely doesn't really help and, in some cases, could be counterproductive. Soaking the roots in a solution of rooting hormone would likely be better.”
Here is the response from Members: The few which have tried it said they were successful in saving their orchids. However, they all indicated that they had only used the sugar water treatment once on one plant.
Why are my orchid leaves splitting? Split orchid leaves can be due to irregular watering; insufficient humidity; excessive direct sunlight or as a result of trauma to the orchid plant. However, sometimes even with excellent care orchid leaves can split and this is of no concern if the plant is otherwise healthy and well cared for. Review your plants culture requirements to see what adjustments you may need to make.
Converting plants to new conditions (example bark to semi-hydroponic) Can it be done at any time? The opinion, reasoning and recommendation of several growers are:
When roots grow, they acclimate themselves to function optimally in the environment in which they are growing. Once those cells have grown, they cannot change. When you move a plant from one set of root conditions to another, you are changing the environment and the existing roots will no longer function optimally. The plant will have to grow a whole new root system that is optimized for the new conditions, and the old root system will ultimately fail. Note: new root tips emerging from old rootswill not suffice. The new roots will, indeed, adjust to the new environment, but the parts of the roots that connect them to the plant are not, so will fail.
The absolute best time to repot a plant – whether from old- to new potting media or changing it to an entirely different potting situation – is just as brand new roots are emerging from the base of the plant. Those new roots will be optimal for the new environment and support the plant, while the old roots begin to fail. If you ignore this timing factor, as the existing root system falters, the plant will have no way to take-up water and will suffer. At that point you must go to great lengths to "baby" it, keeping it warm, shady, and in maximum humidity so that it will not desiccate and die before new roots can emerge and take over.
What is a peloric orchid?
A peloric orchid is one that has a genetic mutation that causes the petals to mimic the shape of the lip.
One defining characteristic of orchids is that that are bilaterally symmetric, meaning that if you draw a vertical line down the center, it will look the same on either side of the line.
Peloric orchids actually begin to look more star-shaped or radially symmetric, meaning that you can draw a line along any plane of the flower and each segment will look about the same. Peloric orchids don’t tend to be perfectly radially symmetric like daisies or lilies, but they are much more so than orchids without the mutation.
Member wants to know about growing New Guinea Type Dendrobiums.
High Elevation New Guinea Type DendrobiumsThe species are primarily the mountain cloud forest inhabitants of some Oxyglossum as well as the cooler Pedilonums & Calyptrochilus members. This information is primarily related to species such as: Dendrobium cuthbertsonii, Den. vexillarius, D. violaceum, D. hellwigianum, D. masarangense & D. seranicum, etc. of section Oxyglossum (OXY) and D. subclausum of the Calyptrochilus (CALY), D. caliculimentum, D. alaticaulinum, etc. of section Pedilonum (PED) just to name a few.. New Guinea Dendrobium orchids do experience definite seasonal wet/dry periods. Their "summer" or growing season may experience day temps between 55'-85'F. (depending on elev.) with humidity upwards of 90% day and night. The "winter" or "dry" season often receives 50'-65'F. days with dips as low as 32'- 40'F. on clear nights. Below is general care information:
Light: It is recommended for best results, (as a general rule of thumb) to provide good light (1800-2200 footcandles). Not enough light results in weak, easily damaged and disease prone foliage, poor blooming and lack of growth.
Humidity:Most prefer fairly high humidity 70% is ideal. Too little and the miniature plants will dry up quickly, and too much and they are a potential for disease and/or root loss. You should strive for a lightly damp media the never becomes “bone dry” or remains wet for extended periods of time.
Water:Water quality is a concern because these orchids do not appreciate a high mineral content in their water. Water when the media just approaches dryness which is approximately every 5-7 days depending upon you individual environment.