live moss in orchid pots?

clickercricketJanuary 26, 2014

i have eight baby orchid plants in separate small terra cotta orchid pots (different kinds). i usually put a layer of brown sphagnum moss over the bark medium. i have a bunch of green sphagnum-like moss growing in the lawn. would it be worth a try to transplant this green moss into the orchid pots? or is this a bad idea?

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arthurm(Sydney, NSW AUST)

I do not think it is a good idea, but you should repost over on Discussions. Not sure how many people look here but it is the place where people post pics, though sometimes the pics generate discussions.

    Bookmark   January 26, 2014 at 6:47PM
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Not the best idea. First is the issue of introducing pests. Second is te fact that the moss will die. You have native hardy moss in your yard that requires winter dormancy. It dies without it.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2014 at 4:00PM
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I have traded for Bulbophyllum with a fellow in Washington state. He grows them in a native sphagnum moss which he finds in the hills near his home. Once a year, he tells me, he trecks to a place he discovered and returns with all the moss he can carry. He has a huge collection of Bulbos which he repots in fresh moss once a year. This yearly trip provides him with the moss he needs.

I have quite a few plants growing in New Zealand sphagnum moss and occasionally the moss begins to grow. I tried to encourage this but have been unsuccessful. Tom Miranda (spelling ?) who writes irregularly for the AOS magazine told us that if watered with pure RO water WITHOUT fertilizer, SM will grow. One of these days I plan to try this. I also repot all plants in moss once a year and it can get expensive.

If your moss is fluffy like sphagnum moss, I would try one plant in it and see how it does. The usual moss found in North America is probably not suitable for orchid culture.


    Bookmark   January 28, 2014 at 10:48AM
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thank you all for answers. it is winter here and the moss survives the snow and is bright green and fluffy. i pulled a nice clump up and dried it on some newspaper. i then cleaned it of dirt and debris. it was still green. i decided to use one orchid as a guinea pig. the moss surrounds the plant and is fluffy and green; whether it grows or not is not an issue...the color is. so far...looks beautiful. much prettier than brown sphagnum that tends to flatten out over time. if it continues to thrive and not harm the orchid, i will post a pic. i just wanted to see if i could use something that was free outside my doorstep. it is covered in 8 inches of snow i will wait til the snow melts til i harvest another batch.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2014 at 5:44PM
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