Potting in Bonsai Mix
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  #1  
Old 06-27-2010, 05:57 PM
britbloke britbloke is offline
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Potting in Bonsai Mix Male
Default Potting in Bonsai Mix

Has anyone tried Bonsai Mixes (usually fine bark, fine lava-rock & turface). It seems to drain well for Bonsai roots and is a good choice for a wide variety of cuttings, so it seems a natural choice (to me) for orchids.
The Bonsai guys, cut roots off extensively and then encourage new root growth.
I've never seen anyone grow orchids in Bonsai mix or heard any discussion, is it just a cost factor?
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  #2  
Old 06-27-2010, 10:39 PM
Zoi2 Zoi2 is offline
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With the mix being "fine" does it pack with water? I don't believe orchids would do well if it does as they need a lot of air for their roots.
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  #3  
Old 06-27-2010, 10:53 PM
britbloke britbloke is offline
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I'm not a Bonsai expert (or Orchid expert for that matter), but my experience with Bonsai mix is that it stays very loose & drains rapidly. The two or three Bonsai I have are in a 'fine' mix which seems to have stayed open for at least 9 months or so.
The Turface in the mix, is what is used under sports stadiums to make sure the drainage is exceptional.
Of course the Bonsai guys re-pot too, but I haven't seen the dense compaction I find in old Orchid mix.
I have 4/5 seedlings that came from a what I bought as a single seedling, so I'm going to try 1) in lava/spag, 2) bark 3) mount w/spag 4) bonsai mix.
Not very scientific, but if I find a similar situation with other seedlings, I'll repeat with another species.
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  #4  
Old 06-27-2010, 11:26 PM
Call_Me_Bob Call_Me_Bob is offline
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i do bonsai. and the bonsai soil i use is a mixture of fur bark, haddite, and akadama. and it is small. it wouldn't give enough air to the roots of the orchids (assuming its an epiphytic orchid, if its terrestrial orchids in question, dont ask me) i wouldn't recommend it. the pieces are too small.
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  #5  
Old 06-27-2010, 11:40 PM
britbloke britbloke is offline
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Hmmm, that's very interesting and consistent with growing trees vs. epiphites.
So maybe something like a Paph would be a good trial?
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  #6  
Old 06-28-2010, 12:34 PM
Call_Me_Bob Call_Me_Bob is offline
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I don't know much about phalhs. So someone else will have to answer that question. But I wouldn't try bonsai mix with a epiphyte
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  #7  
Old 06-28-2010, 02:01 PM
Tropicgirl Tropicgirl is offline
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I have some Stanhopea seedlings in bonsai mix since I didn't have any seedling mix. I wouldn't use it for most orchids because the bark in the bonsai mix is very small bits and it decomposes faster than orchid mix. I have some bonsai that are due for a repot and the mix is now just like regular soil. But it's probably great for terrestrials.
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  #8  
Old 06-28-2010, 02:28 PM
Call_Me_Bob Call_Me_Bob is offline
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you should start a thread, id love to see your bonsai
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  #9  
Old 06-29-2010, 04:07 PM
Tropicgirl Tropicgirl is offline
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Most of my bonsai are still in "training" and aren't much to look at YET. I'll get a few pictures of the older ones that actually look like bonsai and start a thread later this week. What kinds of bonsai do you have?
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  #10  
Old 06-29-2010, 05:39 PM
Call_Me_Bob Call_Me_Bob is offline
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i have a shimpaku juniper which is not doing to well, and a cedar that i think is dead ( it was dug up, and just for practice)

cant wait to see the pics

i already have a thread... Bonsai workshop
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