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Thread: Orchids for a Lowland Terrarium

  1. #9
    Let's positive thinking! seedjar's Avatar
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    I'd never heard of Pleurothallis before - interesting. The description on Wikipedia mentions that there are species with very reduced foliage. You wouldn't happen to know to which ones they're referring, would you? They describe it as "moss-like."

    ...and can be found as tall cane-like plants a metre or so high, clumped or trailing, pendent or climbing, erect or creeping, tufted and tiny, delicate moss-like species that can grow on the thinnest of twigs... (src: Wikipedia)
    I've seen orchids that looked kind of like a grass, and ones that looked like Sanseveria, but it's somewhat difficult for me to imagine an orchid with foliage that looks like moss. Sounds like an awesome specimen for a terrarium, though.
    ~Joe
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  2. #10
    Tony Paroubek's Avatar
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    I don't know which species they may be referring too. There are hundreds of different Pleurothallis species and they can vary wildlly in growth form, size and flowers.

    One of my more favorite is this one. More of an intermediate grower however.
    http://www.orchidspecies.com/pleurschiedei.htm The little white fringes are so fine they move around on the slightest air currents.
    Is that a Nepenthes in your pocket or you just happy to see me?

  3. #11
    Taargus's Avatar
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    Yeah they make it sound like neos need this or want that and Ive come to find out its just not written in stone, they are very adaptable. During the winter the tank can sometimes get as low as 74 at night. Summer is less fluctuation. Although the temps drop from what they are during the day it appears that is enough for them as long as it varies even if it stays on the warm/hot side? I dont claim to be an expert, just putting it out there that it works for me.

    I dont have them traditionally potted though, as the humidity would be too high and possibly rot them. As mentioned with the Aerangis everything is mounted or in plastic pots with minimal media in a tank that hot and humid. I also have a Microsaccus grifithii, Dendrobium jenkinsii, and an Angreacum distichum in that same tank right now. (The dend does need a dry/cool winter to bloom so I take that one out for a few months)

  4. #12
    swords's Avatar
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    I love the Pleurothallid alliance, Plleuros, Draculas, Masdevallias, etc... there's tons of them and they almost all have amazing blooms if you like small and strange looking! Do your research on them and see what elevation they come from, just like a Nep. At least, that's how I treated my orchids. Any tropical orchids originating over 1000m/3000ft went into the HL chamber anything under that went into lowland. In my lowland tank the days were 85-100*F and nights were 70*F -75*F, this still has a temp drop even though it never actually "cools" but it seemed to be enough for the plants to bloom and do their thing.

    P. Schiedei was a great little plant. I had one for many years on a twig - maybe I'd gotten it from you Tony? I recently got a gigantic unlabeled Pleurothallis, I've never seen one with 20" tall leaves!

    Bulbophyllum / Cirrhopetallum are great too, some are huge but many stay in the 4-6" leaf range with strange alien looking flowers with bobbing, wiggling, furry bits to attract insect pollinators. I have Bulbo/Cirr. fascinator, I can't wait to see the blooms on it that look like a strange purple dagger/insect. I had one species years ago Bulbo beccarri that grew leaves kind of like a shingle mushroom, it looked really fantastic mounted on a slab of cork bark. Good luck finding this one nowadays apparently.... I've been looking for one again but not succeeding.

    There are some really nice small Phalaenopsis species like P. schilleriana many others that grow and look great mounted on twigs and things. This particular plant has kind of silver and green speckled leaves so it looks cool even when it doesn't have it's multiple pink blooms, it's a relatively small plant 6" IIRC but it can create a gigantic floral spray.

  5. #13
    Lucky Greenhorn Lil Stinkpot's Avatar
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    Makes me want some Pleurophyllum, especially the wiggly-hairy one.

    I have angraecum discti...(somethign), the chain-leaved one, and an aerangis biloba, can't wait for blooms from them.
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