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Advice on growing Miltoniopsis?

Discussion in 'Orchid Culture' started by Dorothea, Jul 1, 2014.

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  1. Dorothea

    Dorothea New Member

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    Hi guys!
    I'm thinking of buying a Miltoniopsis but before I do so, I wanted to make sure I'll be able to take proper care of it. I've heard it's a little tricky and I'm kind of an amateur but really enthusiastic ;)

    So, a few words about my growing conditions. I grow my orchids (so far I only have phals) at home and I live in Sweden, which means long hours of intense sunlight in the summer and sparse light in winter (i.e. half of the year). I have east and west windows. The temperature at my apartment varies within 20-25 degrees C (68-77 F) depending on season, and I have no clue about humidity. Also, we have pretty hard water in the area. I have a BRITA filter, which is supposed to eliminate chlorine and calcium carbonate, so perhaps filtering the water is a good idea?
    So what do you think, will it be possible for a Miltoniopsis to survive at my place? Perhaps there are some small adjustments that I can make to provide better conditions for it?
    Looking forward to hear your thoughts!
     
  2. KellyW

    KellyW Orchid wonk Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Hi Dorothea. I have never grown Miltoniopsis so keep that in mind when reading my advice :). If you have been successfully growing Phals then temperatures shouldn't be a problem for you. Miltoniopsis will want more light than Phals so if you can provide that then you may be OK. I don't know about the water quality needs. I hope that someone that actually grows this genus will give you some advice.

    Do you have a particular species or hybrid in mind or just like them as a genus? Hybrids may be more forgiving of the conditions.
    Good luck.
     
  3. Kermie

    Kermie Tadpole Supporting Member

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    I grew them unsuccessfully for a few years before the last died and I gave up!

    They are quite sensitive to water quality and temperature. You'll find if temps get too warm the leaves will wilt, they generally prefer to be grown on the cool side of intermediate. Mine struggled along in house temperatures, but I eventually lost them when I repotted. They do not take kindly to being repotted.
    I really wouldn't say I know many indoor growers who've had success with them.
    They certainly are gorgeous though!
     
  4. Boytjie

    Boytjie Out hiking Supporting Member

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    Echoing the advice on the cool temps. I tried to grow both of mine in the early part of the summer on my porch, which routinely gets up into the mid-80s in the afternoon. Not a good idea. They suffered, and are now trying to stage a recovery inside the house. They definitely prefer it cooler.
     
  5. Dorothea

    Dorothea New Member

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    Thanks guys! Sounds a bit scary, but since I live in Sweden, I think cooler temperatures should be easy to provide ;) I might give it a try in early September and see if I succeed.
     
  6. emuehlbauer

    emuehlbauer New Member

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    Miltoniopsis are very difficult to grow in the home. They can last for years, but are always in a state of decline. They bloom easily enough, but unless the humidity is very high, the flowers are always damaged. I would say that humidity is the biggest issue with them, not temperature.
     
  7. highup7

    highup7 New Member

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    I have about twenty of these and I grow them indoors under plant lights. I had trouble growing them until a local grower told me his secret to growing them. He ordered pots for cool growing orchids on the internet. I went to the site that he gave me and I purchased quite a few of the pots for cool growing orchids. My plants responded to the cool pots within a few days. They put out new growths like crazy and all of them bloomed. Those pots are fantastic. I ordered some larger cool growing pots and I repotted my cymbidiums in them. It's really hot down here and I noticed that two of my cymbidiums are putting out spikes. It gets as hot as ninety-three degrees down here with a humidity of 70%. I growmy cymbidiums outside under trees. I also have a small fan in the room where my milts are and it runs 24 hours. I rarely repot my milts. unless they are growing out of the pots. I also use regular tap water when I water them. I never fertilize them because fertilizer kills them. I put crushed dead tree leaves on top of the mix every two months. I haven't lost any yet. They also love living where the humidity is quite high. I use a cheap vaporizer in the room where my milts are and I keep the door to that room shut. So far everything is working for me. Oh, don't let them dry out because if you do, the new growths will get pleated leaves that will last the entire life of the new growth. I hope this helps you. Good luck in your growing endeavors.
     
  8. wpinnix

    wpinnix William Pinnix

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    Do you have a link to the site for cool growing orchid pots?
     
  9. Kermie

    Kermie Tadpole Supporting Member

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    I never see anything wrong with trying when it comes to orchids! You might surprise us all :)
     
  10. Dorothea

    Dorothea New Member

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    Thanks highup7! :) That's very helpful indeed, and a lot of nice useful details. I'm also curious if you happen to keep the link to those cool growing pots, maybe I can make use of those. Good to know about fertilizing, I would have definitely tried to do it if it weren't for your advice. And regarding tap water: I water all of my flowers with it, but it's really very high on calcium. If I don't remove all excess water from the sink when doing the dishes, it leaves white spots when it evaporates... That's why I though I might have to do something about it. How often do you usually water the milts and how? Do you soak them like one does with phals?
     
  11. Dorothea

    Dorothea New Member

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    Hehe, thanks :) I just didn't want to torture the poor orchid with bad conditions, but I can give it one try at least! Will use all of the tips I got here :)
     
  12. Dorothea

    Dorothea New Member

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    :/ I'll try to fix the humidity issue, let's see what happens.
     
  13. highup7

    highup7 New Member

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    I know that I'm late on the discussion of milts. but here is what I found out growing them. First of all I live in south Louisiana where the temps are extremely hot and the humidity is quite high. My plants never see the outside of my house. I grow them in a spare room that gets the early morning sun. I have them in a large window. I also have an oscalating fan that is always on. I have a small humidifier that looks like a stick. I put the humidifier in an empty plastic milk jug. The humidifier is always on. I purchased the cool pots but I think that I wasted my money on them. The cool pots didn't help at all. I met a milt. grower in New Orleans and he told me what the biggest mistake people make in growing milts and why they die. The reason that they die is because of the tap water that we use to water these plants. He said to always water with distilled water and fertilize with an organic fertilizer only since their roots are very thin and delicate. I tolok his advice and rushed to WalMart to buy bottles of distilled water. I only have twenty plants and the show that they put on is ending. The plants put out a ton of flowers and did that room smell good when I went in there. I started to think that there must be a better way to get water instead of buying bottles of water that were a dollar a jug. I found a water distiller for seventy-five dollars and I'm using it all the time. The distiller has really helped and I haven't killed a milt. since I only use distilled water and organic fertilizer. The name of the water distiller's company is VEVOR. Remember to use distilled water and organic fertilizer. Organic fertilizer will not burn the milts. sensitive roots. I hope that this helps some of you to give milts. a second try. BTW, my milts are in my house with central air and heat. I have the temps. set at 73 degrees. My plants all seem to be doing exceptionally well.
     
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