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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Have any of you ever mounted an orchid directly onto a great stuff & peat moss covered foam background?

There are some open areas on my paludarium background and side walls where I'd like to grow some miniature orchids. I am tired of trying to attach tree fern panels to the foam. Additionally there are some areas where I can't really have any 'growing media' attached to the foam bg because the thickness of the added media would look awkward protruding out from the wall (and also would cast too much shade on other plants)

BTW my paludarium is partially open-top and is not as humid as a frog viv. The foam bg regularly dries out currently, and does not grow moss or anything cool like that.

I figure the answers to my questions will depend on a variety of factors such as what species of orchid, how much humidity, etc, but I'm interested in your general thoughts or experiences.

1. First I thought the peat moss covering on the foam might be bad for the orchid's roots because of the acidity, but then I realized people use sphagnum moss all the time for growing orchids, so I guess it would be fine...?

2. If the orchid is secured to the foam for long enough to grow some new roots, do you think the orchid's roots would be able to actually attach to the foam and support the weight of the plant? The bg is pretty smooth, but I know plant roots are pretty amazing too.

3. I figure the foam doesn't breathe well so I should eliminate all moss and go completely bare-root to avoid rot...?

Any tips, advice, thoughts, experiences and the like would be much appreciated
 

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1. It will work but it's not ideal. The acidity isn't really an issue, but id always choose wood or cork or tree fern for good root growth

2. If the plant is happy the new roots will hug the background. The more texture the better for good root growth to secure their plant.

3. Depends on the plant. Pleuros will want moss bulbos won't. You must do your homework on the types you want to use
 

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you should have no problems and the roots will grow and hold the plant no problem just find an orchid you like, that dosnt mind drying between watering dendrobiums are a good one for that but make sure it dosn't need a winter rest you cant give it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the fast responses!

That D. oligophyllum looks nice but it's not quite the growth habit I am looking for...

Here's one specific orchid I would like to use on the background:
Barbosella handroi

Andy's site says let dry lightly between waterings. I figure with a super thin bed of moss I can probably keep that orchid happy.

I'm also looking at these:

Bulbophyllum moniliforme
Dendrobium dichaeoides 'creeping type'
Pleurothallis sarracenia

And for other spots not necessarily as a "groundcover":

Schoenorchis fragrans
Constantia cipoensis
sophronitis cernua

....among a billion other mini orchids I have suddenly become obsessed with :D
 

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Nice choices, although I've never used any of them in a Viv personally.
Most of my stuff isn't blooming, except for my Ornithocephalus gladiatus which I should get a pic of. My new Cyclopogon linleyanum is in spike too. Ill Get a pic when it's openi, same wih my Tuberolabium
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Nice choices, although I've never used any of them in a Viv personally.
Most of my stuff isn't blooming, except for my Ornithocephalus gladiatus which I should get a pic of. My new Cyclopogon linleyanum is in spike too. Ill Get a pic when it's openi, same wih my Tuberolabium
Sweet, I can't wait to see those plants
 

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Those I know who grow it well give it around 55F nights. I almost bought one last year from J&L when they came to a show down here. The owner told me I may be able to keep it alive indoors in a terrarium, but it probably would never flower.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Those I know who grow it well give it around 55F nights. I almost bought one last year from J&L when they came to a show down here. The owner told me I may be able to keep it alive indoors in a terrarium, but it probably would never flower.
Good to know this info, thanks for the heads-up. I will call up Andy's Orchids and get the scoop :)
 

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Ok please post what you find out! This is one I've wanted to try for a while, and if Andy says differently I may try it out too.
 

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If you attached your peat to the GS using Silicone II, I would be careful. I have had plants grow up to the silicone w/BioSeal and then die back. The silicone in this case wasn't covered very well with coco fiber, but it is something to consider.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
If you attached your peat to the GS using Silicone II, I would be careful. I have had plants grow up to the silicone w/BioSeal and then die back. The silicone in this case wasn't covered very well with coco fiber, but it is something to consider.
Thanks for the tip. Luckily I used a plain silicone. Sorry to hear about your bad experience. What did you do after the plants died back?
 

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For the most part I don't pin plants directly to the cocofiber/GS. This was a shingle plant that was growing up the glass and when it hit the Silicone II that I had used to black out the rear side of the tank, it died back off the silicone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Ok please post what you find out! This is one I've wanted to try for a while, and if Andy says differently I may try it out too.
I talked to Andy regarding the Dendrobium dichaeoides 'creeping type'.

He said they grow theirs outside where it gets down in the 50's some times in the year. He told me he doubts it NEEDS to have that cold of nights to grow and bloom well, but it comes from colder areas in nature so it has to be cool in general anyway.

Therefore, in actuality, Andy couldn't confirm or negate the "requires 55 to bloom" because he doesn't grow them warm enough year-round to find out what would happen if you didn't give them those low temps. That said, Andy is a super experienced guy and I would tend to accept his advice/theory anyway. Max temp on this orchid is 80, but it would prefer far lower, probably mid 60's to 70's. Probably not a good one for a warm viv like PDF vivs. I could probably pull it off in my open top paludarium, but now I am reconsidering because I don't think my tank is tall enough or has enough space for this baby to creep around. I don't know, arg, it's such an awesome plant!!!

Take-away: As long as you keep it cool enough year round (70's or lower), it probably doesn't require as low as 55 to do ok.
 

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Hi!
What i do with my orchids is epifitate in the xaxim. I make a hole in a piece of xaxim ( if the piece is small, you can stick it with silicone to the terrarium) and i cover the top of the hole with alive sfagnum (more beautifull than dead one). I use xaxim in big pieces to cover the backgrounds or the sides of my terrariums, so i only have to do a hole in one of the pieces, or if i have foam covered with coconut fiber, y stick a small piece of xaxim to the foam. With this method, the roots of the orchid could be dry and grow over the place he prefers.
Excuse me for my english, i know it's not good, but i promis i would improve ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hi!
What i do with my orchids is epifitate in the xaxim. I make a hole in a piece of xaxim ( if the piece is small, you can stick it with silicone to the terrarium) and i cover the top of the hole with alive sfagnum (more beautifull than dead one). I use xaxim in big pieces to cover the backgrounds or the sides of my terrariums, so i only have to do a hole in one of the pieces, or if i have foam covered with coconut fiber, y stick a small piece of xaxim to the foam. With this method, the roots of the orchid could be dry and grow over the place he prefers.
Excuse me for my english, i know it's not good, but i promis i would improve ;)
Thank you for these ideas. Is Xaxim the same as Tree fern panel? It is hard for me to attach tree fern panel to my background because my background is not flat, it has curves.

I see it is your first post...welcome to this forum!
Do you have any pictures of your terrariums?
 

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Thanks!:)
Well, i only have a few pictures in internet, but no one with my terrariums, sorry!
This is what i call xaxim

and it grows like this

My benedicta is like in the jungle with it xd!
This is one of the first orchids i have had, Bulbophylum lobbi.

When i buy orchids like this in germany or holand, y do 2 things with them:
-Like i told you, introducing it in the xaxim
-With a wire, i make a hole in the corck and i nail it with te wire to the tree fern panel.
If your background is irregular, i suggest you to shape the xaxim, its easy and looks more natural.
keep telling how its it going ;)
 
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