Potting mixes of all types for growing different kinds of epiphytic and terrestrial orchids.
Most of the orchid mixes serve two functions -one to hold the root mass intact , provide aeration to the roots... and supply nutrients to teh growing plant and in the process breakdown as suppliers fo Nitrogen and other essentials for the plants. They are avaialble in several sizes as fine mixtures to to particles of larger sizes like in the case of charcoal and brick pieces and some are used to anchor the plant to the systems. They should possess good water absorbing capability and release water when needed.
They should also have good nutrient holding cpaacity and release them when wanted by the growing orchids.Also the fine grades are used for thinrooting systems that require less aeration than thick ones and accordingly are chosen to the plant.
The least media are used in vandaceous plants and more richer media for paphs. Sometimes perlite, vermiculite and stones like calcium carbonate beads are mixed alongwith each other for the paph and phal mixtures.For spaths and cymbidiums a genral mixture containing peat and other combainations are used.
When using larger media care should be taken to supplement additonal food as they drain faster and cannot hold them as is needed. But large specimen plants with their massive root system may need large sized growing media.
The coco blocks media which are treated for tannins and for termites are used as growing systems for several orchids including Dendrobiums, oncidiums ,Cattleyas and other orchids as is basis or in pots.
Charcoal and burnt wood is one the most sought orchid media for most of the potted orchids. Charcoal dried in sizes ranging from 4cm to 8 cms are used in the potting media. Pine bark is used extensively for the culitvation of phalenopsis and paphiopedilium plants.
Shown are the wood shavings media which are treated for tannins and for termites are used as loose fill media for sevral orchids including terete,semiterete, and strap leaved vanda family, vanilla, oncidiums and other orchids in ground fill as mulch or in pots filled with them.