Questions we are often asked
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Does the kind of moss used on Kool-Logs matter? (The secret of Kool-Logs culture)
I can’t over emphasize how important the quality of moss you use and the condition of the moss on your Kool-Log is to successful Kool-Logs culture. From day one of mounting an orchid on a Kool-Log the moss starts a slow deterioration process and at some point this deterioration will affect the health of your plant. Before it completely turns into muck it will start to loose sponginess and it’s loose fiber appearance. This could be as soon as a year to several years based on your conditions. At this point it’s time to remount you orchid. If you ignore the signs of deteriorating moss you may see a dramatic decline in your plant. So, start out with the best moss available. We use only New Zealand Spagmoss as it has shown to be the longest lasting moss available. Be ready to remount your plant at the first signs of a decline in your plant or a deterioration of the moss regardless of the plants health.
Is it hard to remount a plant on a Kool-Log?
As it turns out, remounting of a plant is one of the big advantages of growing on Kool-Logs. Just take the Kool-Log mounted plant and submerge in a bucket of water for about 15 minutes. Remove the Kool-Log from the water and cut the string that holds the plant and moss to the Kool-Log. Gently wiggle the plant and the roots will release from the Kool-Log. The plant will come off of the log with little or no damage to the roots. This greatly reduces or eliminates the normal repotting damage to orchid roots grown in a media. Then either remount the orchid to the same log or move it up to the next larger size Kool-Log. If the orchid roots are still moist they will retain their shape and easily go around the Kool-Log. Click here for instructions to remount the plant.
How are Kool-Logs different from other cool growing systems?
Unlike most other cool growing systems, on Kool-Logs the plant grows on the outside of the container. In other systems the plant, mix, and water all go inside the container. The standing water promotes a rapid deterioration of the mix and subsequent early root loss. Since the cooling effect only takes place on the outside of a container, if you put the mix and orchid on the inside, the orchid roots will be at room temperature regardless of the outside temperature.
How often do I need to water my Kool-Logs?
Simply refill the log with water when it is empty. Don't worry if it stays dry for a day or two. Most orchids like a little drying between waterings. If you are growing a plant that has a distinct dry rest period, put a piece of aluminum foil over the log opening to keep water out of the log during its normal rest. Continue to mist and water the outside of the log every few days even during the rest period.
Can I grow on a windowsill with Kool-Logs?
Yes, Kool-Logs work great for windowsill growing. Our heating and air conditioning systems pull humidity out of the air. The Kool-Log will replace that humidity around the plant and supply the needed moisture to the roots. Remember, most orchids grow in the tree canopy and do not like direct sun on their leaves. This is particularly true of strong mid-day sun.
How do I fertilize my plant on a Kool-Log?
We use a good orchid fertilizer diluted in water to 1/8th strength once a month. Just fill the log with this very weak solution of fertilizer and use good quality water the rest of the time. Remember, most epiphytes grow naturally with very little fertilizer. Don't think more is better.
What plants can I grow on Kool-Logs?
You can grow most epiphytes such as orchids, ferns, bromeliads, pepperomias, etc. Click here to see many of the plants we have grow and bloomed on Kool-Logs.
Can I grow warm growing orchids on Kool-Logs?
We grow many species that require warmer conditions on Kool-Logs also. They do not seem to mind the cooler temperature at the roots and they still get the other Kool-Log benefits of a great mounting surface, continuous even moisture, and great aeration of the roots.
My plant is mounted on wood. Is that OK?
Before I developed Kool-Logs, I grew most of my plants mounted on cedar boards. I discovered two potential problems with this growing method. First, all wood products are subject to rot. This rotting is generally consealed under the moss pad and you often don't notice it until you see a decline in the plant and decide to remount. I have seen significant rot on good quality cedar in less than a year. Once the rot starts, the roots start to decline. Second, I generally mount with a pad of moss under the roots and another layer on top of the roots. This works great unless the moss becomes dry. Once the moss is dry it is very difficult to get it and the roots completely rehydrated. I have soaked a wood mounted plant in a bucket of water for over ten minutes only to find that the center of the moss was still bone dry. In the normal growing environment and if the plant has become dry, most of the water is just running off the surface of the moss and never getting to the roots. Kool-Logs will eliminate both of these issues.