Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2  Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums - shop light
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Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2  Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums - shop light
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  #1  
Old 11-29-2018, 09:07 AM
annie.exe annie.exe is offline
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Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2  Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums - shop light
Default Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2 Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums -$35 shop light

Hi guys! I'm pretty brand new to orchid growing but am having so much fun.

Currently I've been growing several orchids under a $35 Home Depot shop light. I've gotten a lot of new leaf and root growth on every orchid but still have zero flower spikes.

I haven't been using a timer.. Just have been running the lights for about 12 hours a day.... but that varies. I've accidentally left it off or on here and there.

I've moved my Oncidium orchids off to the side away from the light because I'm afraid it's been burning them.

I've only been watering with water. Most are in Leca or are bare root. 2 Phals are in spagna.

I want to upgrade my setup and keep learning but I don't know where to start. I don't have access to natural sunlight so I need to stick with lights, unfortunately. I do have central air and am located near Minneapolis Minnesota.

Here is a link to images: Imgur: The magic of the Internet

Any feedback or direction on how I could improve my setup would be much appreciated. Thank you!

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  #2  
Old 11-29-2018, 05:30 PM
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Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2  Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums - shop light
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I am not sure what you mean by shop light but I mostly use fluorescent T5HO lights and the one LED light that has been recently added. I grow nearly all my plants, not just the orchids, under lights. I have shelves and attach the lights to the shelves. So:

Fluorescent lights (I have three of these four foot, four lamp ballasts that I attach to a shelving unit).

Lights: Amazon.com : Hydrofarm FLT44 System Fluorescent Grow Light, 4-Feet : Plant Growing Light Fixtures : Garden & Outdoor

shelf: Amazon.com: Alera ALESW604818BA Complete Wire Shelving Unit w/Caster, Four-Shelf, 48 x 18 x 72, Black Anthracite: Home & Kitchen

LED light (mine is a two foot one): Amazon.com : Sunblaster LED Grow Light Strips - 4 FT : Garden & Outdoor

I use S-hooks to attach the lights to the shelves and line the shelves with clear plastic to protect the lights.

---------- Post added at 05:30 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:28 PM ----------

I replace all the fluorescent lights each year. Fortunately, I recently found a hydroponics store not too far away so replacing the lights has just gotten so much easier and cheaper.
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Old 11-29-2018, 05:46 PM
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The images are fairly low-resolution, so I am generalizing somewhat, based on what I see in the larger plants.

Many of them look severely dehydrated. Watering with plain water is fine, but if you have good root growth, then you need to water more effectively. Each time you water, flush water thoroughly through the medium. Then, water again when the medium is nearly dry again. For very dehydrated plants, don't be afraid to soak the roots of the plants a good long while (up to an hour at a time is a good place to start).

If your relative humidity is real low (Minnesota, I'm guessing central heat?), Use a humidifier or some other means to increase humidity.

For the small bare root plants, they are unlikely to survive like that for long. If you want to grow bare root in a pot, try a terracotta pot, which will retain some moisture/humidity after watering.

Shop light fixtures can be fine for growing, 6500 color temperature 'daylight' bulbs are best, but you can get started growing leaves and roots if you bought something else. Your plants are way too far from the bulbs though. I am fairly certain the lights didn't burn the Oncidiums unless the leaves we're touching or nearly touching the bulbs.

That's a start; good luck, you likely will get other suggestions.
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Last edited by Orchid Whisperer; 11-30-2018 at 11:22 AM..
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  #4  
Old 11-29-2018, 06:18 PM
annie.exe annie.exe is offline
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Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2  Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums - shop light
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orchid Whisperer View Post
The images are fairly low-resolution, so I am generalizing somewhat, based on what I see in the larger plants.

Many of them look severely dehydrated. Watering with plain water is fine, but if you have good root growth, then you need to water more effectively. Each time you water, flush water thoroughly through the medium. Then, water again when the medium is nearly dry again. For very dehydrated plants, don't be afraid to soak the roots of the plants a good long while (up to an hour at a time is a good place to start).

If your relative humidity is real low (Minnesota, I'm guessing central heat?), Use a humidifier or some other means to increase humidity.

For the small bare root plants, they are unlikely to survive like that for long. If you want to grow bare root in a pot, try a terracotta pot, which will retain some moisture/humidity after watering.

Shop light fixtures can be fine for growing, 6500 color temperature 'daylight' bulbs are best, but you can get started growing leaves and roots if you bought something else. Your plants are way too far from the bulbs though. I am fairly certain the lights didn't burn the Oncidiums unless the leaves we're touching or nearly touching the bulbs.

That's a start; good luck, you likely will get other suggestions.
I'll have to take some serious action on them being dehydrated I didn't know it was that bad. I do have some orchid fertilizer that I got from an orchid nursery here so I'll start using that. I'm not sure why I was afraid of it.


Thank you for all the suggestions! All of this was so helpful. I really appreciate it I feel totally blind in this so the direction is great. Thanks again!

Edit: Yes central heat

Last edited by annie.exe; 12-01-2018 at 07:36 AM..
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Old 11-29-2018, 06:40 PM
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Lower you lights... Maybe set the light lovers in uosude down pots to raise them. The phals should be furthest away the Oncidiums mid way.

Otherwise, I agree with OW. The plants look very thirsty and your oncidiums look burned at the tips. A word to the wise: hold back on future purchases until you get the hang of growing these.
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Old 11-29-2018, 06:47 PM
annie.exe annie.exe is offline
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Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2  Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums - shop light
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dollythehun View Post
Lower you lights... Maybe set the light lovers in uosude down pots to raise them. The phals should be furthest away the Oncidiums mid way.

Otherwise, I agree with OW. The plants look very thirsty and your oncidiums look burned at the tips. A word to the wise: hold back on future purchases until you get the hang of growing these.
Thanks so much for the reply - This insight is so helpful.

So you do think my oncidiums are burned? That's what I thought it looked like.

I'm wrestling with the purchases bit! You're completely right and I've been trying to stick to a big budget. I purchased 12 of them in bulk on ebay for $66. Honestly I'm surprised I haven't completely killed any yet. I knew it would be a learning process.

It's really fun but I'm excited to get to the point where they all look healthier

Thanks again!
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Old 11-29-2018, 07:02 PM
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Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2  Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums - shop light Female
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Use the purple search bar. As you plug in the names of your plants, you'll find care tips. Also look for a sticky thread called "The Phal Abuse Stops here." Learn, and don't be afraid to ask.

The burnt leaves on your oncidiums could also be from being dry and/or low humidity.
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Old 11-30-2018, 11:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by annie.exe View Post
I'm sorry the quality was bad! I have a 1080p video of them if you don't mind that:


I'll have to take some serious action on them being dehydrated I didn't know it was that bad. I do have some orchid fertilizer that I got from an orchid nursery here so I'll start using that. I'm not sure why I was afraid of it.


Thank you for all the suggestions! All of this was so helpful. I really appreciate it I feel totally blind in this so the direction is great. Thanks again!

Edit: Yes central heat
I wouldn't worry about the fertilizer right now. You need to get some water into the plants.

When you do provide fertilizer, if the package says give 1 teaspoon per gallon, use much less; maybe 1/4 or 1/8 teaspoon. Orchids are very weak "feeders", in general.


The fertilizer should provide N, P, and K, the N and K should be about equal, P lower (if your N-P-K numbers are different, don't worry too much about it).

When providing fertilizer, don't do it too often. There's an adage among orchid growers, "weakly, weekly" to describe how & when to provide fertilizer. Most growers I know provide fertilizer less often that that. Maybe monthly.

Above all, have fun, you'll get the hang of it, and don't stress if you lose some plants along the way.
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Last edited by Orchid Whisperer; 11-30-2018 at 11:46 AM..
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  #9  
Old 12-01-2018, 06:58 AM
annie.exe annie.exe is offline
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Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2  Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums - shop light
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I appreciate all your advice so much - thank you! I tried to make some changes. I moved my light down, moved all my non phals up on upside down pots, soaked/lightly fertilized, moved my bare root plants to terra cotta, and got a humidifier

Unfortunately I'm going to need to change the humidifier because it only lasted for 7 hours :/ .. It did up my humidity from 28% to 53% though so I'm hoping if I can find a good one that this will help my orchids a lot

Here's a picture with the changes as well as the label of the fertilizer I used: Imgur: The magic of the Internet


I know I still have a long way to go but I already think your advice will help my orchids a lot

Edit: removed video and added attachment of picture
Attached Thumbnails
Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2  Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums - shop light-dsc03489-jpg   Beginner Growing 5 Phals, 2 Vandas, 2 Catts, 2  Dendrobs, 3 Oncidiums - shop light-dsc03490-jpg  

Last edited by annie.exe; 12-01-2018 at 07:29 AM..
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  #10  
Old 12-01-2018, 07:07 AM
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If you have other leafy houseplants, placing them nearby also helps humidity. That looks better, you'll have to experiment a bit. No video.
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