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  #1  
Old 07-28-2015, 11:43 PM
Bunch_Of_Roots Bunch_Of_Roots is offline
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Advice needed for Vanda tricolor Male
Default Advice needed for Vanda tricolor

Hi everyone! I have been lurking on this wonderful forum for some time now, and decided to join the club! I enjoyed the helpful discussion and cultural insights here.

About 3 weeks ago I purchased my first Vanda ever, and it is a tricolor. The plant came mounted on a branch with a few small roots. For two weeks I used the vase culture outdoor. It receives a few hours of direct sun and it seems to like it. However, having the plant outdoor causes the roots to dry very fast, and I do not have the time to spray/ water it everyday. So I decided to put it in a square mesh basket that is about 12"w x 12"l x 12"d with some coarse bark mix and top it with a thin layer of sphag moss.

Now I am wondering if that is the right move to do what I did. Does anyone here in SoCal grow their Vanda outside? If so can you please give me some cultural advice to keep my Vanda tricolor healthy and thriving?
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  #2  
Old 07-29-2015, 01:46 AM
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I have a few Vandas (about a half dozen hybrids) and based on my experience with those, I think the basket is too large, and I would omit the sphagnum on top. It is possible to grow them in coarse bark, but many people grow them with no medium at all.

I grow all of mine in sort of a modified vase culture. The "vase" is a recycled clear plastic bottle, top cut off, a few small holes cut in the bottom, a few quarter inch diameter holes on the sides of the bottle half way up to allow a little air flow. I have an inch or two of rounded pebbles in the bottom of each "vase", mostly to keep the container from tipping. Otherwise, no medium in the bottle, just empty space. I spray the roots as often as I can, usually once a day. For me Vandas do best with little or no medium; the roots grow like mad inside the "vase".
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Old 07-29-2015, 02:12 AM
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You are located in southern California where the atmosphere is conducive to orchid growing. You only have frost a few weeks a year....its best to hang your Vanda outdoors under a tree for air flow and water it every other day. The moss might attract fungi or bacteria infestation because the roots have to dry fast after watering....yet the porous layer of the roots still retain moisture and humidity....I water Vandas twice a day if it is above 90F....your plant is merely a seedling so you have to give it extra care or it will not survive....it is in the formative years that you give it full attention. Once it is five years old and have established itself to your environment: then you can be a bit negligent.
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Old 07-29-2015, 05:02 PM
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I have a tricolor but grow it in a g/h. I potted mine into a large basket using lava rock as the media. I don't like to water more than once a day and have found the lava holds enough moisture for one day to make it happy.

Vanda tricolor LUR_3871 by Jim Lurton, on Flickr

This pic was taken in '09 and last July it was topped and the growth was 5'9" and donated to a fund raiser. It had grown three huge keikis and is getting ready to bloom again.

Since CA is in a severe drought, large bark may be a better media than the lava rock.

Brooke
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Old 07-29-2015, 11:13 PM
Bunch_Of_Roots Bunch_Of_Roots is offline
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Thanks for all the replies! That is one nice Vanda you have there Brooke!

Since I do not have the time nor have the ability to water it it once, or more a day I think I will put it in a pot with some large pieces of bark. I am going to take out the moss as bud suggested it. I called Andy from Andy's Orchids to ask about his opinion on this topic, and he suggested that I should put this Vanda in a pot.

Anyway, what is the growth rate like on this species?
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Old 07-30-2015, 12:35 AM
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I grow Vandas here in SoCal outdoors. Certain Vandas can grow outdoors here all-year-round, but not all of them.

Vanda tricolor is one of those you are able to grow outdoors here without a problem. I would also advise not to use the sphagnum moss top dressing.

I would not go bareroot out here either. They will go downhill very rapidly because the humidity here isn't high enough all throughout the day. The humidity here is usually moderate during a good part of the day. At night is when the humidity can rise significantly.

They can be grown potted or in a basket.

I prefer growing them in a clear plastic pot with lots of slots.

Mounting them on a piece of wood here is also tough because of low water retention of the growing media and the relatively low humidity levels here throughout the day. But this can be done better than if you tried growing them bareroot here. You'd just have to water more often. I've done it before with fairly descent results.

I would also be careful with giving them full sun from down here. The sun here is pretty strong. Even a Vanda can get sunburn.

Many of my high light growing orchids do not get full sun here, (and this goes for all my Vandas). It is just too strong. So be aware of your surroundings and watch your orchid carefully. Just because someone says an orchid can be grown under full sun, doesn't necessarily mean it will work for you in the long run. The other person's growing environment could be radically different from your growing environment. We as humans may not be sensitive enough to sense it, but the plants sure are, and they will react accordingly, and not necessarily immediately either.
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Old 07-30-2015, 11:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bunch_Of_Roots View Post
Thanks for all the replies! That is one nice Vanda you have there Brooke!

Since I do not have the time nor have the ability to water it it once, or more a day I think I will put it in a pot with some large pieces of bark. I am going to take out the moss as bud suggested it. I called Andy from Andy's Orchids to ask about his opinion on this topic, and he suggested that I should put this Vanda in a pot.

Anyway, what is the growth rate like on this species?
I didn't see this, but I concur with Andy's. I've grown my Vandas potted for years.

The growth rate is slow. They'll most likely grow 2 - 4 leaves a year.
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Old 07-30-2015, 01:41 PM
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I agree with previous writers, that basket is too large.

Seedling Vandas should not be allowed to dry out, so you have to balance the amount of care that you can give it, with whatever it takes to make it grow under those conditions.

Personally I grow small Vandaceous plants in a 3" net pot, filled with 70% spaghnum, 25% bark & 5% charcoal. We try to water twice a week in summer, but only once a week in winter.

However, where I have the smaller plants, I have rigged a garden hose with a sprinkler and an electronic controller. It comes on for 1-2 min every morning.
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Old 08-02-2015, 06:24 PM
Bunch_Of_Roots Bunch_Of_Roots is offline
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Update:

I repotted the Vanda into a 6 inch pot with coarse bark and charcoal today. The roots look healthy still and growth tips are present.

My question now is that should I leave it in its original spot where it gets a couple hours of direct sun, or move it somewhere shadier?
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Old 08-02-2015, 11:09 PM
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Advice needed for Vanda tricolor Male
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The first photo you posted showed shriveling leaves. This one has nice turgid leaves. The plant likes your care.

Inland S Cal is different from coastal S Cal in terms of how much sun to give plants. When the air is cool and it is breezy, the heat generated by sun shining on leaves can be carried off by the air. Inland where the air is warmer and there may be no breeze, leaves can quickly get hot and burn.

Growers can often get away with some direct sun for high-light plants, but it is important to pay close attention daily while learning to prevent burning.
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