Guest Author - Susan Taylor
Each fall I spend time checking out the internet for ideas for holiday gifts appropriate for orchid lovers. This is the first in a series of articles so if you know of anything new or different or if you are a vendor with orchid-related items, please email me a let me know about it.
All growers can use more supplies for their hobby. One idea that might interest your enthusiast is a semi-hydroponic culture set which can be obtained from First Ray’s Orchids or Interior Water Gardens. Semi-hydroponics is a particular way to grow orchids which does not use any kind of medium which deteriorates so they need transplanting less often. Both sites carry the kits as well as detailed information on growing. First Ray’s has a forum for questions about semi-hydroponic growing.
Two new items I came across this year – one an old idea with a new twist and another a new moisture meter just for orchids – are both good ideas. For the serious grower is a new version of an old idea from Waldor Orchids. It is a potting stick in new age plastic based on an old wooden version that has been around for years. The Potting Stick offered by Waldor is a really a great addition to any collection of items a grower with lots of plants needs. The second item is the Jermic Moisture Meter which was just released this year. The Momet™ Moisture Meter, although a bit on the pricey side at $34.95, is a perfect gift for both new and experienced growers. It is designed especially for orchids. The meter is pushed into the medium and will show whether it is dry enough to water. New growers will welcome the help; experienced growers will use it during the fall and spring periods when normal watering schedule cannot be followed because of variable weather.
1-800-Orchids the vendor who does our orchid giveaway, has a great variety of mosses, potting mediums and also planting kits (be sure to scroll down to see these). Check with your orchidist to see what they use and/or would like in the way of media. One of my favorite vendors, Quarter Acre Orchids, has a great selection of supplies for growers, including misters, humidity trays and potting supplies.
For a really personalized service for those of you in the South Florida area, check out the Custom Orchid Racks at Broward Orchid Supply. They will build and install a customized rack for your outdoor orchids. If you’re not in that area, these pictures will give you some awesome ideas on what it is possible to do in a back yard growing area.