Anyone using CHC on Phrag. kovachii these days? Favorite non-bark/CHC mix choices?

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Tom Reddick

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Good evening all. Many years ago when the first kovachii flasks came available from Piping Rock, I took on 4 flasks for a "kovachii Chronicles" in which I found the plants grew- both in roots and leaves- at a noticeably more aggressive rate in CHC mix than in bark (note the CHC was soaked for several weeks in RO water changed out weekly to reduce salts.)

However, as happened to many of us pioneers- after several months all of the plants died even though some (the ones in CHC) had gotten almost 10 inches across since being in flask. At the time out of desperation I gave them to one of the best growers in the country to see what could be done- but it was too late. I was not seeing them in their final days, but as they left my care I did not notice the CHC plants suffering more from leaf loss than the bark ones. For my part, I attribute the decline in part due to a career event that left them neglected for a few weeks- but what part of the ultimate loss was inevitable, long term cultural or CHC vs bark was never established.

Fast forward and in a few months I am going to be receiving some of Acker's new kovachii sib crosses- now 4 generations removed from the wild. I would like to do another kovachii Chronicles (which I can post here if people like), and while my bark mix will be my main mix, I am wondering if anyone else out there has ever found the success with CHC that I did. If so, I am tempted to put some compots in CHC. Beyond that, I have zero experience with media not based in bark or CHC- but if one has really worked well for you on kovachii- please tell your tale, and I will look at adding a third and/or fourth media to the overall experiment.

Many thanks for any thoughts!
 

Anca86

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I use a mix of rockwool and clay pebbles 50/50 for all my phragmipediums and paphs. They seem to like it.
 

dodidoki

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Orchiata and perlite, standing in water.This way is so far the best what i have ever tried with phrags.
 

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FrankRC

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I wrote a long article in the year end issue of the Orchid Digest last year focusing on Phrag. Culture and recommend you get a copy if you don’t already have one.

The clay pots with a mix that includes Orchiata, watering frequently, is the way to go with Phrags. Putting pots in standing water is Ill advised. Airflow across the roots is the magic ingredient and u less you are using modified pots the water cuts of all airflow through the bottom of the pot.

There is a section in the article detailing a modified hydroponic system that is easy, inexpensive and very good for kovachii.
 

abax

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Depending on weather, I water about every four days with very dilute K-Lite. SB, I have
a large garbage can full of my mix and it contains at least two or three sizes of Orchiata,
charcoal and medium perlite. All my clay pots have either holes around the sides or
slits that I do myself. I agree with FrankRC that air flow is extremely important for
Phrags. I grow in a gh, so I can make all kinds of mess in there and I do!
 

tomp

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I wrote a long article in the year end issue of the Orchid Digest last year focusing on Phrag. Culture and recommend you get a copy if you don’t already have one.

The clay pots with a mix that includes Orchiata, watering frequently, is the way to go with Phrags. Putting pots in standing water is Ill advised. Airflow across the roots is the magic ingredient and u less you are using modified pots the water cuts of all airflow through the bottom of the pot.

There is a section in the article detailing a modified hydroponic system that is easy, inexpensive and very good for kovachii.
The ODC article is excellent!
 

Tom Reddick

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I wrote a long article in the year end issue of the Orchid Digest last year focusing on Phrag. Culture and recommend you get a copy if you don’t already have one.

The clay pots with a mix that includes Orchiata, watering frequently, is the way to go with Phrags. Putting pots in standing water is Ill advised. Airflow across the roots is the magic ingredient and u less you are using modified pots the water cuts of all airflow through the bottom of the pot.

There is a section in the article detailing a modified hydroponic system that is easy, inexpensive and very good for kovachii.
Thanks everyone! Glad I posted because clearly much has happened since I last grew out kovachii. I have a few months before the flasks arrive, so I will get some Orchiata and start testing it out, and Frank- thank you for the info on your article. I will most definitely get my hands on a copy and take your findings into consideration when I select my growing variables. Being an in-home grower, it would be very nice to not have to do the standing water approach again- so I will be very keen to read up on that and do a large portion of the plants in that manner.
 

Ray

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I grow all of my phrags in semi-hydroponic culture with pots having an internal reservoir. Always moist and very airy (about 35-40% open volume), and if used in a drier environment, there is some evaporative cooling which makes it easier for typically cooler-growing species that I can otherwise grow down here in NC.
 

Brabantia

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J'ai écrit un long article dans le numéro de fin d'année de l'Orchid Digest l'année dernière en se concentrant sur Phrag. Culture et vous recommande d'en obtenir un exemplaire si vous n'en avez pas déjà un.

Les pots en argile avec un mélange qui comprend Orchiata, en arrosant fréquemment, est la voie à suivre avec Phrags. Mettre des pots dans de l'eau stagnante est déconseillé. Le flux d'air à travers les racines est l'ingrédient magique et moins que vous n'utilisiez des pots modifiés, l'eau coupe tout flux d'air à travers le fond du pot.

Il y a une section dans l'article détaillant un système hydroponique modifié qui est facile, peu coûteux et très bon pour le kovachii.
[/CITATION]

Pourriez-vous s'il vous plaît préciser le mois ou le numéro dans lequel votre article a été publié. Mon club est abonné à ce magazine et pour le voir, je dois fournir plus de détails. Merci d'avance.
 

Brabantia

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I wrote a long article in the year end issue of the Orchid Digest last year focusing on Phrag. Culture and recommend you get a copy if you don’t already have one.

The clay pots with a mix that includes Orchiata, watering frequently, is the way to go with Phrags. Putting pots in standing water is Ill advised. Airflow across the roots is the magic ingredient and u less you are using modified pots the water cuts of all airflow through the bottom of the pot.

There is a section in the article detailing a modified hydroponic system that is easy, inexpensive and very good for kovachii.
Could you please specify the month or issue in which your article was published. My club subscribes to this magazine and in order to view it I need to provide more details. Many thanks in advance.
 

Tom Reddick

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Could you please specify the month or issue in which your article was published. My club subscribes to this magazine and in order to view it I need to provide more details. Many thanks in advance.
I am not Frank, but in case it helps I ordered the issue over the weekend from the website. It was The Phragmipedium Issue - 84-4 (they do a special issue at the end of each year focused on a particular aspect of orchids.) If you need more info or want to order the issue, here is the link,

 

Tom Reddick

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Who did you consider one of the best growers? Just asking.
Normally I would be happy to say, but it was a commercial arrangement and I always keep that confidential. FWIW, even I knew when I sent them over that it might be too late to save them- so it was truly all my bad.

Kovachii flourished for me the first time around. For a while they grew like weeds, but then the leaf tips started browning. The plants were adding new and larger leaves almost as fast as old ones fell- but by the time I threw in the towel most of the plants had 3 pairs of good undamaged leaves and were rapidly going in the wrong direction on that front.

We both figured it was likely a major nutrition deficiency combined with me doing a really good job otherwise (well, I may have dwelled more on the latter thought than my friend did.)
 

Tom Reddick

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I grow all of my phrags in semi-hydroponic culture with pots having an internal reservoir. Always moist and very airy (about 35-40% open volume), and if used in a drier environment, there is some evaporative cooling which makes it easier for typically cooler-growing species that I can otherwise grow down here in NC.
Good evening Ray, I did a little research on Google for semi-hydroponics but had a tough time narrowing down good information for orchids amid the oceans of advice on growing other more lucrative crops.

If you have any particular brand or supplier that you recommend, I would be grateful.
 

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