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  #1  
Unread 08-27-2009, 11:04 PM
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Location: Michigan, U.S.A
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Default Misting Orchids.....

Hey guys! I'm a bit confused about the topic of misting orchid foliage and aerial roots (if present), please tell me your preferences and reasons.

I've been misting my orchid's foliage and aerial roots daily, but I've heard conflicting views from you guys and from my readings. I mist my orchid because I've read that all parts of the plant are capable of absorbing nutrients to some extent, it helps with humidity, and it simulates it's moist environment.

Here's the downside: I've been told that I could be inducing crown rot, but where I'm misting I'm careful not to get it in the crown, and the water is gone within about 15 minutes.

Thoughts?
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  #2  
Unread 08-27-2009, 11:44 PM
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Default benisjamin

Hi Ben,
I lightly mist my orchids 3 or 4 times each day.....only because of the heat in the greenhouse. I've had a hard time keeping it under control this summer, so misting the leaves is the only thing I know to do to keep the plants cool. I'm not a very experienced grower, so I don't know if this is right or wrong. I, too, have heard conflicting views about misting, so I would like to what others have to say, as well.
By the way, I read in your other post that you are new to the forum, so welcome I know you will enjoy it here. I certainly do....I have learned very much from everyone!
Vicki




Quote:
Originally Posted by benisjamin217 View Post
Hey guys! I'm a bit confused about the topic of misting orchid foliage and aerial roots (if present), please tell me your preferences and reasons.

I've been misting my orchid's foliage and aerial roots daily, but I've heard conflicting views from you guys and from my readings. I mist my orchid because I've read that all parts of the plant are capable of absorbing nutrients to some extent, it helps with humidity, and it simulates it's moist environment.

Here's the downside: I've been told that I could be inducing crown rot, but where I'm misting I'm careful not to get it in the crown, and the water is gone within about 15 minutes.

Thoughts?
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  #3  
Unread 08-27-2009, 11:58 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Michigan, U.S.A
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Thanks for the response Vicki, it's not hot in my house (75 is about the peak) so I'm not relieving heat, but I heard that misting can help for heat. Hopefully we'll get some experienced people to respond.
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  #4  
Unread 08-28-2009, 12:10 AM
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The problem isn't the misting itself (forgive me if I sound like I'm contradicting myself here), it's misting the leaves of a Phalaenopsis that's being grown indoors with no breeze, and potted upright when they naturally grow horizontally on a tree.

The problem is when you mist the leaves of your potted Phal that's positioned upright, (and it's true that most parts of the plant can absorb nutrients), that the water droplets from the misting can dribble into the cavity where the crown is even if you don't plan for it to happen (the unexpected happens all the time in everything you do). The probability is higher that this will happen even if you try to be careful. You would have to do extra things like getting a paper towel or tissue paper and dab the towel into the crevice of the crown to sop up any potential water that may have gotten in there. Now the problem is, let's say you do use the towel, there's still a chance that no matter how hard you try, there might still be some water trapped in there. Well...without a breeze it could stay in there and cause rot over the long run. In order to prevent that, there's the added measure of having to blow into the crown to make sure much of the water has gotten out, but that's not even a guarantee.

Now, here's the thing...

Sometimes when I water my Phals, even though I mount mine, water can still get trapped in the crown inadvertently. When I place the mounted plants on the wall, some of the water will dribble out of the crown, but for added measure, I sometimes would blow the water out of the crown because I'm growing indoors where there's no breeze to dry the water off quick enough.

All in all, it's a matter of increasing the probability of a risk factor happening, when the easier thing to do is to eliminate that factor completely.

So, misting is not necessarily a good or bad thing. Don't think of it in that manner. Think in terms of how you're growing the plant; what cultural practices increases or decreases certain risk factors, what cultural practices produce the results I desire versus the results I don't desire, and what cultural practices increases or decreases efficiency, but all in the context of how the plant would naturally grow.

BTW, orchids absorb nutrients not only through their roots, but on the underside of the leaves as well.

Last edited by King_of_orchid_growing:); 08-28-2009 at 12:17 AM..
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  #5  
Unread 08-28-2009, 12:15 AM
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King of Orchid Growing: Thank you for clarifying that point, I appreciate it. Is there any way I can continue misting? It's sort of imprinted in my routine. btw, I'm watering tomorrow and I'm gonna do drench and drain.
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  #6  
Unread 08-28-2009, 12:18 AM
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Mist underneath each leaf.
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  #7  
Unread 08-28-2009, 12:20 AM
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Thanks, I'll definitely do that. Will it evaporate all the way on the underside? While you're still on, I'd like to ask you, should I have a fan on constantly blowing lightly? Also, should I get a humidity tray?
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  #8  
Unread 08-28-2009, 12:26 AM
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You can use a little fan to keep the air circulation around it going. Just don't blow the air directly at it and keep it a bit of a distance away (maybe 2' should suffice) at a low or medium intensity.

A humdity tray doesn't hurt.

And yes, if you just mist the underside of the leaves , it should actually dry off very quickly. Just make sure no water gets into the crown.
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  #9  
Unread 08-28-2009, 12:30 AM
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THANK YOU THANK YOU. I love having someone to answer my questions. My naggy, unnecessary questions......I'm going to have the fan perpetually going, oscillating. Here's another two questions

What should I do with the yellowed leaf?

What do I do with blooms that are done?
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  #10  
Unread 08-28-2009, 02:13 AM
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Default King_of_orchid_growing

Hi King.....thanks from me, too.
Vicki


Quote:
Originally Posted by King_of_orchid_growing:) View Post
The problem isn't the misting itself (forgive me if I sound like I'm contradicting myself here), it's misting the leaves of a Phalaenopsis that's being grown indoors with no breeze, and potted upright when they naturally grow horizontally on a tree.

The problem is when you mist the leaves of your potted Phal that's positioned upright, (and it's true that most parts of the plant can absorb nutrients), that the water droplets from the misting can dribble into the cavity where the crown is even if you don't plan for it to happen (the unexpected happens all the time in everything you do). The probability is higher that this will happen even if you try to be careful. You would have to do extra things like getting a paper towel or tissue paper and dab the towel into the crevice of the crown to sop up any potential water that may have gotten in there. Now the problem is, let's say you do use the towel, there's still a chance that no matter how hard you try, there might still be some water trapped in there. Well...without a breeze it could stay in there and cause rot over the long run. In order to prevent that, there's the added measure of having to blow into the crown to make sure much of the water has gotten out, but that's not even a guarantee.

Now, here's the thing...

Sometimes when I water my Phals, even though I mount mine, water can still get trapped in the crown inadvertently. When I place the mounted plants on the wall, some of the water will dribble out of the crown, but for added measure, I sometimes would blow the water out of the crown because I'm growing indoors where there's no breeze to dry the water off quick enough.

All in all, it's a matter of increasing the probability of a risk factor happening, when the easier thing to do is to eliminate that factor completely.

So, misting is not necessarily a good or bad thing. Don't think of it in that manner. Think in terms of how you're growing the plant; what cultural practices increases or decreases certain risk factors, what cultural practices produce the results I desire versus the results I don't desire, and what cultural practices increases or decreases efficiency, but all in the context of how the plant would naturally grow.

BTW, orchids absorb nutrients not only through their roots, but on the underside of the leaves as well.
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