How To Grow Orchids on Sponge Rock or Perlite

Do you know that orchids cannot really grow on soil without other materials mixed in? Yes, it is true. Most, if not all, orchid variants need a different kind of media in order to grow. Some use bark while others use perlite or sponge rock. Perlite is a type of rock compacted with volcanic minerals that makes it lightweight, able to hold water efficiently, and improves the drainage of the soil. This is probably the reason why most gardeners prefer to use it for pot gardening.

So, if you are looking to grow some healthy orchids fast and efficiently, consider using sponge rock. Here are the steps grow orchids using this particular media:

  • Purchasing the materials. This should not pose a problem for you since purchasing orchid seedling is as easy as pie. Mosey on down to your local flower and plant supply store and purchase the seedling. Consider going with an orchid specie native to the region if this is your first time growing orchids. While at the store, make sure to purchase perlite or sponge rock along with moss peat, loam, and the pots. Yes, you will need all this and you can find them at the same store as well. Make sure that when you purchase the perlite to consult the vendor as to what grade should be used for orchids growing. Perlites come in different grades and you will definitely want to go with something that works with your plant.
  • Mix the media. Keep your seedling moist and safe while you work on preparing your pot and mix the media to be used. Technically, you will be mixing the potting ingredients you purchase at the store. The recipe for the mixture will require you to throw in one part of each ingredient, loam, perlite and moss peat into a pot. Mix until all the ingredients are saturated.
  • Embed the seedling. As soon as the potting media is ready, get your seedling and carefully transfer it into the pot. If you are working with seeds directly, then you will need to create a 2 to 3 inch hole in the media, place the seed, and cover the hole. If you are transferring a young seedling, fill the container by half, place the seedling into the container, and fill the other half of the container so that the seedling will be stable and secure in the media.
  • Water it often. Since you are growing orchids in pots, you will want to use a spray bottle to water them. Water them at least once a day since it is imperative to keep the media nice and moist. Growth will be optimized with an ample supply of water.
  • Fertilize. Some may argue that this is optional but since a vast majority recommends it, consider fertilizing your orchids using specialty fertilizer designed for orchids. Your local plant and flower supply store should have this stocked. Make sure to read the fine print on how to apply it and the frequency of application.

Finally, do not forget to provide sunlight or artificial lighting to your seedlings. They will need this for energy and without a daily dose of light and heat your orchids will wither and perish.


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