Raccoon raid & orchid miscellany

I watered and fertilized my orchids last night with Dyna-Grow “ProteKt” and “Bloom”, and I tossed a few crystals of epsom salts in the water as well. I write this for my own benefit because my record-keeping is at best, haphazard. Next time I get the urge to give them the epsom salt treatment, I can check the date on the blog to make sure it’s been at least 4 months.

Why epsom salts? Mostly because I read on a forum somewhere that the plants like it. I like epsom salts in my bath water too.

Most of my orchids are in semi-hydro, though I’ve repotted all my phals in New Zealand sphagnum moss because none of them were happy. More than half the blame for that can be laid at the doorstep of that destructive racoon, who couldn’t be convinced that those were roots, not fat grubs. Since the only healthy phal I own is in moss (and was kept indoors under lights all summer), I decided to see if changing the medium would give the poor beaten-up and broken things a boost.
Don’t get me wrong, semi-hydro works great for most of my orchids. The phrags and the zygos love it. It’s just the phals that aren’t thriving in it, for me at least. I’ve heard the same from a couple of other people.

Speaking of raccons, Laird had a heart attack the morning of the day I arrived home. He walked into the kitchen and the dog food was knocked over, and what little was left was all over the kitchen floor. Once this evidence of a midnight racoon raid registered, he raced to the back porch to check my orchids. They were untouched. Obviously the F.B. (fat bastard) gorged himself to the point he couldn’t be bothered with mere flowers. Laird’s first act of the morning was mopping up the back stairs, as the wretched creature had left a trail of pee all the way down and out the door (the door he had pried open the night before).