Sphagnum moss is one of the best growing media for orchids. So you are wondering: how to water orchids in moss! In this article, we gonna answer this question. And we will discuss how moss reacts to water. Plus we will talk about orchids water needs. In order for you to understand both sphagnum moss and your orchids water needs.
Also, we will discuss how to water orchid that growing in moss in a container without drainage holes. And how to water it in a container with drainage holes.
But before diving deep into the details I will put the answer to our main question as simple as this ” How to water orchids in moss? Water your orchid that growing in sphagnum moss when the moss is light in weight and dump in touch. Pour the water in the moss gently in order for the moss to absorb the water. let the water set in the container for 30 seconds. Then pour it out from the container if you use a container without drainage holes.
Keep reading to know the water needs of orchids and how sphagnum moss can satisfy those needs.
Orchids water needs
orchids are native to the rainforests. They grow on other trees trunks. They use the host tree as a base to be anchored on. They don’t get nutrients from the host trees. Hence, they are not parasites.
They get nutrients and moisture from the air through their roots. In rainforests, there is plenty of rainfalls. But the water that falls in the orchids drains very quickly.
Because they don’t grow upright in the rainforest. Instead, they position themselves in the host trees in angle. So they don’t absorb water directly.
Instead, they absorb moisture from the humid air in the rainforests. Now you know the water needs of orchids. Let’s move to how sphagnum moss reacts to water.
How sphagnum moss react to water
Sphagnum moss is a living being. It is a plant. Sphagnum moss absorbs and retains water that equals 20 times its weight. It also drains excess water very fast.
The water that retains releases it through time slowly. But it tends to repel water when it is completely dry.
The right way to water orchids that growing in moss
Now you understand both the orchids water needs and how sphagnum moss reacts to water. Such things will make us conclude that you should water your orchids that growing in moss when the moss became light in weight.
Just hold the container if you find the moss container lightweight, and dump to the touch, it means you orchid need watering.
In such a case, pour the water gently and slowly into the moss. If your pot came with drainage holes it will drain. And you have nothing to worry about.
Just pour the water from the saucer after the pot drained all the excess water. But if you are using a cup without a drainage hole. Wait for 30 seconds after you poured the water gently into the moss.
Then pour out all remaining water from the pot. Make sure there is no water left in the pot. In order for your orchid to not root rot.
Also, don’t let the moss be completed dry. As such thing will make it unable to absorb the water. If the moss is new and you found it completely dry, soak it in water for an hour before using it.
If you neglect your orchid and you don’t water it until the moss completely dry out. You may need to pour the water slowly several times until the moss regains its absorbent ability.
Which water you should use
Generally speaking, Most tap waters have a high pH level that makes orchid unable to absorb nutrients from the sphagnum moss. Therefore it is better to use filtered water or rainwater to water orchids that growing in sphagnum moss.
Sphagnum moss is a great medium for growing orchids. When it came to watering, don’t let the moss dries out completely because it will repel water.
Instead, check the sphagnum moss if you find it lightweight and dump to the touch it means your orchid needs watering.
Gently and slowly pour water in the moss and wait for 30 seconds if your container has no drainage holes. Then pour all the water from the pot.
Make sure you didn’t leave any water in the pot. As any excess water may cause root rot. For more detailed information and a holistic perspective on caring for potted plants and mastering Container Gardening, Get my book Container Gardening: A Step-by-Step Practical Guide.