Recently, I decided to repot my Paph exul after almost two years of growing it in the same pot it came in. It looked happy and had rewarded me with, not flowers, but lots of keikis.
- Paph exul – needs repotting
Obviously, I could divide this.
Pulling the plant out was easy – a gentle squeeze at the sides of the pot loosened its grip, and it came out nicely after tipping the pot over. There was a tight root mass growing in what looked like old ‘soil’.
To be honest, I didn’t know what medium this was but it looked humus rich and, after carefully shaking it off the roots, I found a couple of earthworms. A good indication of organic health perhaps, and I think the slipper orchid didn’t mind their company.
Next, I carefully split the plants.
For the potting medium, I prepared a mixture of 2 parts small charcoal chips, 1/2 part coconut husk chips and 1 part ‘dirt’ comprising burnt soil, used coffee grounds (from Starbucks! They give it away for free), a bit of perlite and some powdered gardening lime to raise the pH.
By the way, I have NO experience with repotting paphs, this is just my hunch-formula.
Then, I placed each division into its respective pots and topped them up with my ‘home-made’ potting mix.
Well, I am HAPPY to report that after 5 months, both the slipper orchid divisions are thriving!
It might have something to do with the fact that Paph exul is quite tolerant of most types of medium, including novice formulations like mine. I do make it a point though, to give this species more light, and the occasional watering of gardening lime solution to keep the pH in check.
I fertilise them weekly with a weak solution of generic soluble fertilisers together with the rest of my orchids. Absolutely no pelleted or slow release fertilisers, though. I was told by a vendor that paphs are intolerant of them.
Oh yes, and what did I do with the worms? I put them back into each pot!