How can I mount an orchid? What do you use to mount orchids?
Mounting orchids is a simple process. First, I would suggest applying the hanger to your mounting material. Most people make hangers for the mounts from wire. The most common wire used is the wire used for hanging suspended ceilings, but any strong, yet flexible wire may be used. One method is to bend the wire into a u shape, and then hammer the wire into the mount. The other method is to drill a hole or two and thread it through the mount. Making a tag with a hole and threading it onto the hanger is a wise thing to do to identify the plant. A tag made from Tyvek scraps and permanent marker may be used if you dont have any fancier material.
Orchids to be mounted are placed on the mounting material which has been soaked in water (I like to leave it over night). Some people put a pad of good quality sphagnum moss on the mount then place the roots on top of itallowing the roots to spread first into the sphag. Before it goes into the mount thereby helping it get established. Others prefer to place the plant directly on the mount, or to put the sphag pad on the outside.
The plant is then tied into the mount, by wrapping monofilament (fishing line), twist tie, or panty hose around the roots. Once the plants roots have grown into the mount, the line, twist ties, or panty hose is removed.
Tree fern plaques (or slabs), and cork bark are probably the most commonly used mounting material, but other materials include cactus skeletons, and rough driftwood (both of which may be purchased at pet stores as they are used for reptiles). Some people like to use slabs of wood with bark attachedsuch as live oak or fir. Fresh water driftwood may be used, but driftwood from saltwater bodies must be washed to remove the salt. Using Physan to kill any bad things on collected mounts is also a good idea. Driftwood as a whole may not be the best material as orchids like to have a somewhat rough surface to grow into. One grower uses paint sticks for some of his smaller mounts.
Tree fern slabs are probably the most quickly drying. Vary your mounting material to the plants needs. Plants needing a quicker dry-out should be mounted on a more porous material and the sphagnum or coir pad may be skipped.