In the early days of orchid culture, peat moss (Sphagnum) was a commonly used additive to increase water retention and air volume. However, this field of application has long since fallen into oblivion. Since 2020, Sphagnum has experienced an unexpected comeback through the German orchid nursery Hassinger and through our own experiments in combination with our Orchitop S.
Orchid-nursery Hassinger approached us because they wanted to offer ready-cultivated Dracula orchids in the Orchitop – which, by the way, they are now doing. The surprising thing for us: this moisture-loving genus is cultivated entirely in (dead) peat moss. Because Sphagnum has some very interesting properties that, in combination with Orchitop, lead to particularly favorable culture conditions.
This makes peat moss ideal for orchids that
1. would like to have it moist in the entire root area like Dracula/Masdevallia, but also Phalaenopis.
2. Have suffered root damage and need to be rerooted.
The combination with the Orchitop S results in further advantages: the Sphagnum hardly decomposes because it dries up quickly again due to the open construction of the Orchitop. And the saucer makes watering much easier, because a complete filling of the saucer S is completely absorbed by dry sphagnum in a few minutes and ensures sufficient moisture in the entire root area. It is important to only use soft water.