TioTeo Posted September 18, 2021 Share Posted September 18, 2021 A while back I started a topic on orchids in or around aquariums, and it did not seem anyone had a solution so I decided to give it a shot to find and option myself. Background: If you are not familiar with orchids it is commonly described that they do not like "wet feet," meaning that as epiphytes you do not want to let their root structures sit in water. This can be one of the many reasons why novice orchid keepers experience good growth for a few months and then see die off due to over watering. However, I did mention in the previous post, a long time orchid keeper that had shown some success with orchids grown directly in aquarium water, like most aquarists will keep pathos. As a compromise, I decided to see if I could come up with some sort of hanger to allow the bottom of an orchid pot to wick up water, while also allowing for efficient oxygen exchange. This is my solution. The initial design was created to sit on the edge of my rice fish planter/indoor pond. It is made out of hardwood (walnut) and uses a Vigoro wall mounted ring (purchased from your local hardware store) to hold the orchid pot. The fabrication requires the use of a router to create a notch in the bottom of the wood upright, as well as a socket for the wall mount to be secured within the mount. Depending on your water level it is designed to be partially submerged (when the tank is full) while allowing for wicking of water and air flow through the potting medium. Note: potting medium will vary with your climate and water absorption needs. This was preliminarily potted with decorative moss and some lava rock to prevent compaction. [Also, note I did not readily have an orchid pot on hand, so I created one by drilling holes in a 4-5" plastic container to allow for air flow.] In the case of my setup, the water level will drop over several days due to evaporation, and I will often partially refill the tank by filling the pot and allowing the water to drain out into the tank. However, given your potting medium water wicking from base of the pot should be sufficient for sustaining proper humidity of the orchid. This is the second holder I have created, with the first (sitting in another tank) having shown good health for ~ 2 months with the same setup. Note: the plant is still flowering and will not exhibit the classic markers of healthy growth until the it completes this cycle and begins it growth phase. But I have monitored the root structures and have not observed any significant die-off. Only time will really tell, but I believe this to be a good option to use aquarium water to fertilize orchids while preventing over watering. Note: In order to avoid crown rot, orchids should only be watered through the potting medium. Water should not be allowed to flow over and puddle on leaves as this can allow pathogens to grow in the puddled water and attack the crown of the plant. 7 Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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