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hendi_alex
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Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 7:58 am
Location: Central Sand Hills South Carolina

A few orchids in bloom in December

Shots were taken in poor light, but hopefully give a clue as to the beauty of the flowers. We have orchids in bloom 12 months per years thanks to my home made 10 x 28 greenhouse.

Vanda
[img]https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2702/4190974073_e267eb3575_o.jpg[/img]

Vanda
[img]https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2552/4190974507_970ac6dcc9_o.jpg[/img]

Zygoneria
[img]https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2696/4190975175_c9e48c4dc2_o.jpg[/img]

Vanda
[img]https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2535/4191736604_4c18f01c33_o.jpg[/img]

Brassia
[img]https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2601/4191737118_b6a571714a_o.jpg[/img]
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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earth
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Posts: 136
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 5:21 pm
Location: North California "Zone 9"

they are beautiful, i love orchids but have no idea how to grow them leave alone make them bloom all year round. Do tell me about your homemade greenhouse + also tips on orchids.
thanks!
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MysticGardener67
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Posts: 143
Joined: Fri Dec 18, 2009 10:31 am
Location: Lexington KY

AWSOME!!!

:clap: Good job Hendi_alex! :clap: What no Miltonia??? <tease>

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hendi_alex
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Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 7:58 am
Location: Central Sand Hills South Carolina

Earth,

The greenhouse was pretty easy to construct. I renovated a large barn and took 1/3 and covered it in twin wall polycarbonate rather than tin and lumber. A home made free standing greenhouse could be built very easily though CA probably has all kinds of 'codes' that would get in the way. All you need to do is pour a footing or skirt and then build a treated lumber frame. Then cover with polycarbonate, plastic film, or other material. Then just decide on some kind of heat. In CA your heating requirements could be minimal, and your conditions may be much better for orchid growing than here in SC. Here the greenhouse gets way too hot, up into the 90's, and most orchids don't like a temperature over 80-85 degrees. I took an old propane water heater and turned it into a circulating system which feeds tubing on the floor. The plants seem to love that gentle bottom heat. But I also have a propane wall unit from Lowes, and it would take care of the heating needs by itself, down to our normal lows in the mid 20's.

Orchids are quite easy to grow. Keep the temperature between about 50 degrees and 90 degrees. Feed them with a water soluble fertilizer every 2-4 weeks. Keep their planting medium in good shape and don't over water. Scale can be quite a problem, but with persistance you can keep that in check.

Here are a couple of photos of my greenhouse:

[img]https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2044/1690953145_079aedc3b1_b.jpg[/img]

Water tank on right feeds tubing grid under gravel.
[img]https://farm4.static.flickr.com/3250/2915141357_b95549ed5d_o.jpg[/img]

Orchids on left are sitting on heated tubing grid which is on top of foil foam board and covered with pea gravel. Wall heater is mounted on wall to the left.
[img]https://farm4.static.flickr.com/3165/2915142089_be6a39cb8a_o.jpg[/img]
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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applestar
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Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 7:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Your orchids are beautiful! And, wow, that's a LOT of orchids! As usual the scale of your projects are way bigger than I can even contemplate and boggles my mind. 8) You're not kidding when you say you have flowering orchids year round. :D

Is this the same green house you lug all those tomato plants in and out of in spring? An entire 1/3 of the barn, huh? No wonder -- you do have the room!

I have 3 and 1/2 orchid plants -- a BLC hybrid purchased at the Philadelphia Flower Show ... oh ages ago ... that are full of buds and just starting to unfold (This one has a really pretty fragrance), and two Phalaenopsis(es?) that are super easy to grow and flower every year, and a pot containing three babies -- off shoots that grew on the flowerstalks after the flowers were done. Recently, I've been watering them with used coffee ground water -- I dump used coffee grounds in a watering can, followed by filtered water and pour the lot, including the coffee grounds, into the pot over the growing medium. They seem to like it.

MysticGardener67
Senior Member
Posts: 143
Joined: Fri Dec 18, 2009 10:31 am
Location: Lexington KY

well of course !

Recently, I've been watering them with used coffee ground water -- I dump used coffee grounds in a watering can, followed by filtered water and pour the lot, including the coffee grounds, into the pot over the growing medium. They seem to like it.
Who doesn't enjoy a coffee in the morning? :lol:

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earth
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Posts: 136
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 5:21 pm
Location: North California "Zone 9"

Wow! wow! wow! hendi_alex .....this is lovely! wow! I wish i could make something similar :( But i live in an apartment on 3rd floor ..i just have a little patio to put some pots in :( but i have saved your post with pictures ...and would love to have something similar "soon" ...yes! i am after my husband that i need home with some garden - no matter how small! :-)
Also i saw many orchids in Costco last week....this weekend i am buying some :lol:
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hendi_alex
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Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 7:58 am
Location: Central Sand Hills South Carolina

Applestar,

It is funny how a person gets used to space, and uses it all up. You know, how when you just develop an interest in camping, and easily fit everything in a compact auto. Then before long you need a truck to hold the camping 'essentials', and then a trailer to carry even more 'essentials', and the needs just grow and grow. Same with the gardening areas. Last year I could barely walk in the greenhouse because almost every square foot of the walk was covered with some kind of plant, either one being overwintered or pots with annuals for the upcoming season. It only took one or two seasons to learn how to totally use up the 10 foot by 28 foot greenhouse. Now I'm considering building a second greenhouse to be dedicated to the orchids. The barn greeenhouse will be for overwintering tender perennials and for starting seedlings. One benefit of a new greenhouse would be that the orchid greenhouse would be made tighter and more efficient, as the minimum temperature needs to be about 60 degrees or higher. The fairly leaky barn greenhouse could then be maintained at above 40 degrees except during the coldest periods. See, that is another trait of hobbyists, excellent rationalization skills!

Perhaps I'll take a photo tomorrow and you will see what I mean wrt the greenhouse. Most of the space is already taken, and I'll have so many veggies and other annuals that will need space between now and early spring.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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hendi_alex
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 3567
Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 7:58 am
Location: Central Sand Hills South Carolina

Finally got those photos of the crowded greenhouse:

[img]https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2513/4288481747_604f0bd5eb_o.jpg[/img]

[img]https://farm5.static.flickr.com/4068/4288482137_2a704dc483_o.jpg[/img]

[img]https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2699/4288482463_a1d1d8800d_o.jpg[/img]
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex



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