The Orchid Forum, for the UK and Europe (previously known as The UK Orchid Forum) • View topic - My modest windowsills at present!
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 9:31 pm 
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Well, someone has to start up this section I suppose! I don't have a garden sadly to have a lovely greenhouse, so I am making do with my two windowsills in the bedrooms. They are both fairly large windows but they are North Facing sadly. All plants seem to be fine with regards to flowering, and seem to be getting new roots/new growth so perhaps the ones I have picked will be ok? I also have a Cymbidium (Ikea!!) which is living on my sheltered South Facing balcony which has just started to open it's flowers so that's pretty cool, hope it does ok out there!

Anyway, here are a couple of pics of my wee "gardens"

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 10:03 pm 
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 11:55 pm 
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All look in great health.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 7:14 am 
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Please be careful as modest windowsills have a habit of getting very large when orchids are put in them. :lol:

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 30, 2014 5:57 am 
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All of my orchids are houseplants though just a very few spend the summer outdoors in a very sheltered spot, but I have to be very careful only to do that with those that are truly suitable. Otherwise they would spoil for sure.

So there have been many times over the years that I have been scratching to get enough light to my orchids indoors (though thankfully nowadays I have many options).

Just a couple of things that you might find helpful to think about especially as the year progresses to the darker & cooler periods, though the first thing with orchids his always to see how they actually respond to your own conditions.

My guess is that your low-light orchids such as the Phalaenopsis will grow quite well for you for most of the year.
As the days get shorter just try to make sure you use all the available light during the day and don't block any. e.g. with blinds.
Just be careful too as evening approaches. I don't know how your temperatures are but with Phalaenopsis if you are comfortable, the plants will be too . But if it gets very cool around the windows, and especially if the leaves of the pants are very close to or even touching the glass, I would consider pulling the plants back into the room overnight. Orchids just hate being chilled and damage is very long lasting.
Are the plants above a radiator?
It might be that the air can get rather dry at times and that can also upset orchids. Worth considering whether to put moisture trays underneath the plants (very easy to do and can look good). Can makes a big difference to the plants over time.
Would suggest you get a max min thermo & hygrometer and keep an eye on the temps /humidity right through the year. Then you can take small steps just to keep the parameters more in line with what plants find best.

Hope that helps just a little.

Alec


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 30, 2014 12:56 pm 
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Hi Alec!

Thanks for the detailed reply! I have a temp/hyg min/max in both rooms and currently it is

22.1C/min 18.1C and outside 20.3C/14.1C overnight. Humidity is 63% and I try to keep it around that, though it gets to 50% or 70%+ at times. (Room with blinds)

Other room is much the same right now with no blinds at all.

I have both windows open just a crack most nights to let the sensor hang out the window and no more, radiators are in both rooms but never on even in winter as I am heated from all the flats around me!!

I usually close the window in the spare room over winter as my reptiles live in there too, so the temps will be higher in there and might shuffle the plants between rooms to help them?
I have no other windows suitable for plants sadly as the south facing one is a patio door and the cats would probably chew them!

I hope they will be ok! Do my values sound any good at the mo? I do have little pots of wAter on the shelves usually ( taken away for shots!).

Cheers!

Anna


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 30, 2014 2:35 pm 
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Hello Anna.
Your temps and humidity sound pretty good for now, suggest you keep monitoring and see how it develops through autumn & winter.
If Phalaenopsis can stay above about 16-17c at night they should be fine, if they start to dip below that then they might start to suffer.
During the spring and summer, when there is more light of course, you may well get the occasional flower spike, but during the autumn and winter there may not be enough light to trigger flower spikes.
One obvious answer could be to get a suitable lamp and use it to help out when needed - but I have never done that.

If you let us know what all your plants are we might be able to judge better how they will do through the year with your conditions.

In the meantime just keep going! There are a few other tricks I could suggest but I think you have had enough info for the minute!!!

Alec


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 30, 2014 3:17 pm 
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Thanks for this! It's very helpful!

I have 8 NOID Phalaenopsis, 6 in bloom, 1 with flower spike and 1 which has just finished and has been cut.
I also have a cattleya (NOID - maybe intermedia?) which was bought without blooms at all.
A dendrobium-phalaenopsis (sa-nook banana chocolate), out of bloom - new growth
miltoniopsis "herr alexander", in bloom, 2 new growths.
Aliceara "butter bud", out of bloom, 1 new growth.
Burrageara "nelly isler", in bloom, 1 new growth.
Oncidium "sharry baby", out of bloom, 1 new growth.
Oncidium "sweet sugar", in bloom, no new growths.
Masdevallia NOID - in bloom with new flower spikes and growths.
Cymbidium NOID - in bud when I bought it, now blooming and living on my south facing sheltered balcony.

I thought about moving the phals into one room and keeping the window shut at night to stop them getting a chill and I'll keep an eye on temps.

The one phal I have had for a year finished blooming in sept/oct last year, got a new leaf in late dec/ early jan and then the new spike appeared in March/April and it's still blooming now! It's massive and too heavy with 5 inch flowers!


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 30, 2014 8:51 pm 
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They are looking great, just watch your minimum temperatures as soon as it starts dropping to 15-16 c min you will need to heat otherwise they could suffer with continued low temperatures. Up to three weeks with 14-15c min can spur flowering but keep them on the dry side if you do this. Orchids hate cold and wet like most of us!

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 10:58 pm 
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Slight reshuffle, and some new additions....oops!

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 05, 2015 10:56 pm 
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Well, it's gotten worse. What can I say? I'm easily influenced...think I might actually be out of room now though....

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