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  #1  
Old 05-20-2017, 09:29 AM
Melian Melian is offline
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Suggestions for First Mounted Orchid
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I've been growing a few potted orchids and am interested in trying my first mounted orchid. I'd like to grow it hanging in an east facing window in the house (I live in New England) and would prefer something on the small side. Do you have any suggestions for orchids that are fairly easy, don't need a terrarium for humidity, etc that would be good for a beginner to try?
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Old 05-20-2017, 10:27 AM
bil bil is offline
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Miniature phals do well. There are loads of small dens.

Basically, any epiphyte can be put on a mount.
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Old 05-20-2017, 11:08 AM
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There are plenty of small Bulbos that can be mounted and not light hogs,but do need daily watering. I have potted and hanging ones,nothing that requires a terrarium. Good luck.
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Old 05-20-2017, 12:51 PM
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First decide how often you will water it.

Watering can be dunking the mount into a container of water, or soaking it well with a spray bottle. Most orchids on mounts need almost daily watering. A few will die without daily watering, and others can go more than a day between waterings. I would suggest starting with one that can go a few days between waterings without suffering too much.

In general, the smaller the plant, the less tolerant it will be of dry spells.

Some people grow miniature mounts in the window, then put them into jars when they're gone for a few days to a week or so.

Many miniatures are susceptible to spider mites in dry surroundings. Watch for this.

There is a group of orchids sometimes called Dendrobium and sometimes called Dockrillia.
Jay's Internet Orchid Species Photo Encyclopedia Dendroc
They are small to miniature. They do extremely well on mounts in windows. They are not bothered by irregular watering. Several are quite easy to grow. In my opinion these are great first mounted plants for beginners. I might recommend Dendrobium / Dockrillia lichenastrum, linguiforme, prenticei, and toressae. I would not recommend D. cucumerina to a beginner. D. wassellii is also an easy grower, but it needs to be grown on a horizontal mount, not a vertical mount.
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Old 05-20-2017, 01:04 PM
jkofferdahl jkofferdahl is offline
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As mentioned, any epiphytic orchid will naturally do well on a mount. Some are easier than others to care for. I've personally had good luck mounting Phals.

An important consideration in embarking on this, though, is the growing environment. Watering is a consideration because if you can't water the plant where it hangs, it needs to be convenient to a water source. The more important issue, though, is humidity. Unless you can provide a level of humidity at which the plant is comfortable, rather than at which you are comfortable, you won't have success. A mounted orchid absolutely must have moist air. Our houses, with A/C and central heat, typically are (well) under 30%RH. Most mounted orchids want the level to be in the 60-70% range. It the humidity is too low the roots dry out, fail to adhere to the mount, die off, and take the plant with them.
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Old 05-20-2017, 01:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jkofferdahl View Post
...humidity. Unless you can provide a level of humidity at which the plant is comfortable, rather than at which you are comfortable, you won't have success....
This is a very important point, and another reason I suggested Dockrillias. They do fine inside most houses, even at low relative humidity. They come from parts of Australia and New Guinea with long, arid winter dry season. Most grow under tree canopies, so they don't need strong light.

Here are my Dockrillias. For scale, the narrow piece of wood closest to the pond is 1.5" / 3.75cm wide.

Suggestions for First Mounted Orchid-dockrillias_20170520_seca-jpg

The largest is D. prenticei. It came from Andys Orchids' December 2015 sale.

The other two are, top, D. torresae, and D. lichenastrum. They came from Peter T. Lin, Diamond Orchids, when he spoke to our society September 9 2016.

I have grown them in my house, in bright shade from a window, and in my sunroom, also in bright shade. They grow and bloom off and on through the year. I water them by dunking or spraying every 1-5 days. I can tell they would grow and bloom better with daily watering, but I don't always have time for that. I forgot and left the prenticei soak in a bucket of water for more than a day once, and more than half of it died. Now I set timers when I soak plants in buckets.

Based on what other Orchid Board members report, New England seems to be humid enough in summer for most orchids on windowsills. Winter, during heating season, many people there seem to use humidifiers freely.
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Old 05-20-2017, 01:37 PM
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D. wassellii is also an easy grower, but it needs to be grown on a horizontal mount, not a vertical mount.
Interesting. Why's that please?
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Old 05-20-2017, 01:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bil View Post
Interesting. Why's that please?
Alan Koch of Gold Country Orchids spoke to our society February 16 2017. He said a few orchids grow well on mounts only when horizontal. He said they just don't grow when vertical. He said Dockrillia wassellii and Epidendrum polybulbon are two such orchids.
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Old 05-20-2017, 02:37 PM
bil bil is offline
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Originally Posted by estación seca View Post
Alan Koch of Gold Country Orchids spoke to our society February 16 2017. He said a few orchids grow well on mounts only when horizontal. He said they just don't grow when vertical. He said Dockrillia wassellii and Epidendrum polybulbon are two such orchids.
I read your notes on the meeting. Very interesting. Thanks for that.
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Old 05-20-2017, 05:47 PM
Melian Melian is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by estación seca View Post
This is a very important point, and another reason I suggested Dockrillias. They do fine inside most houses, even at low relative humidity. They come from parts of Australia and New Guinea with long, arid winter dry season. Most grow under tree canopies, so they don't need strong light.

Here are my Dockrillias. For scale, the narrow piece of wood closest to the pond is 1.5" / 3.75cm wide.

Attachment 126527

The largest is D. prenticei. It came from Andys Orchids' December 2015 sale.

The other two are, top, D. torresae, and D. lichenastrum. They came from Peter T. Lin, Diamond Orchids, when he spoke to our society September 9 2016.

I have grown them in my house, in bright shade from a window, and in my sunroom, also in bright shade. They grow and bloom off and on through the year. I water them by dunking or spraying every 1-5 days. I can tell they would grow and bloom better with daily watering, but I don't always have time for that. I forgot and left the prenticei soak in a bucket of water for more than a day once, and more than half of it died. Now I set timers when I soak plants in buckets.

Based on what other Orchid Board members report, New England seems to be humid enough in summer for most orchids on windowsills. Winter, during heating season, many people there seem to use humidifiers freely.
Thank you estacion seca, the Dockrillias sound perfect and exactly the info I was looking for. I will definitely look for one. You are correct about the typical humidity in a New England home (no A/C but heated in winter with supplemental humidity), which is why I included my location as factor and am pleased that you noted that and took it into consideration. And I appreciate the advice about jars and spider mites.

Frequent/daily watering is not a problem, although I have been known to forget my Tillandsias in a bucket longer than I wanted, so a timer is probably a good idea

Bil and jkofferdahl, I have two mini phals and have thought of trying to mount one, but they are growing so well right now I hate to disturb them. If I find myself unable to resist another one while shopping, lol, I might do that.

DeaC, I will have to look into the Bulbos. I admit I haven't paid that much attention to them so will do some research.

Thank you all so much for your responses!
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