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Orchid compost - how big is 5 litres? Confused!!!

(13 Posts)
fourormore Thu 14-Jan-21 10:33:38

This is the most stupid question of the day for sure, so please forgive my ignorance - I'm no gardener!!!
I want to buy some orchid mix/compost on line as we are under house arrest!!!

I've found several places to buy but I cannot understand the packaging!!! confusedconfusedconfused

To me litres are a liquid measurement ???????????

Can anyone tell me roughly how big (height, width etc.) a 5 litre bag of orchid mix or similar substance is, in inches please?

I don't want to buy enough to pot the whole of Britain - just enough for a couple of decent sized pots!

Told you it was a silly question but I still work in feet and inches! Milk etc. is now in litres but that's liquid - I understand solids are kilos etc. - Grams! confusedconfusedconfused

Going back into my cave now but an idea of the size of bag I can expect would be gratefully received!!! confusedconfusedconfused

Esspee Thu 14-Jan-21 10:36:32

It is being sold by volume so just imagine 5 litre bottles of milk or a 2+3 litre pack. How much compost would be in them altogether.

Esspee Thu 14-Jan-21 10:42:09

Didn’t explain that well. Think of a one litre jug filled with compost. 5 times that amount.
I’m an orchid fan myself but rarely pot them up. They re bloom about twice a year though never as impressive as the first bloom with me. Have you managed to propagate them?

fourormore Thu 14-Jan-21 10:52:44

Thanks Esspee for your lovely description - looks like 5L will be more than enough.
As I said we are definitely not gardeners - the family joke is 'Don't give Mum and Dad even a pot plant as they'll see it off in days!'

We only have a small flower bed with roses and a few bulbs in it and we do get quite a good result - DH's attitude is that any plant has two choices - grow or not!!!

I do apologise to all the serious gardeners - I would love to be that dedicated!

We were given a small orchid some time ago and basically ignore it! It seems to look like death on a stalk then flowers again! Back in the summer I received a bigger one which seems to do the same?

Neither of them seem to have enough 'soil'??? I know they have to be in 'see-through' pots and not over-watered etc. so I will get the 5L bags and hope for the best!!!

Thanks so much for your help and most of all for not ridiculing me!!!

Bodach Thu 14-Jan-21 11:06:15

If you cannot visualise a 1 litre bottle of milk, then let me try answering your question along the lines you requested. As Espee says, it’s all about volume. One litre is equal to (ie occupies the same space as) 305 cubic inches. So, a bag measuring, let’s say, 6 inches across by 5 inches deep by 10 inches high would contain 300 cubic inches - ie just under 5 litres. Does that help?

Bodach Thu 14-Jan-21 11:08:04

Ooops! Looks like I’m too late. Glad you got it sorted out.

fourormore Thu 14-Jan-21 11:17:03

Thanks to you too Bodach !!!!!!!!!!!

I don't know why they make things so complicated for we of little brain!!! grin

J52 Thu 14-Jan-21 11:52:09

They don’t actually need ‘soil’ the compost is mostly bark. Most of the orchids sold to the public have air roots. Those grey worm like bits that can grow outside the pot. They get a lot of moisture from the air, which is why they like bathrooms and kitchens.
The pot itself should be transparent because the roots, which are green also make food for the plant.
A 5L bag would last a very long time, I’ve only once repotted an orchid and that was because it was a Brassia orchid and eventually outgrew its pot.

fourormore Thu 14-Jan-21 15:23:06

Thanks also to J52 - yes I know what you mean it is a bark type 'mixture' and I'm sorted.
Thank you all for not calling me an idiot - which I am grin!
I think plants are human at times!!!

The strangest thing we have in our garden is a rose that used to be in my late Mum's garden. When she died way back in 2009 we dug it up and put it into our garden.
At that time we were living in a different area and although Mum's rose didn't die it always only ever had one bloom on it each year! It literally looked like a child's drawing of a flower - a stick and a blob!
When we moved to our current address five years ago we really were unsure whether to bother but because it was 'mum's rose' we brought it with us.
As I said we only have a small walled flower bed for a garden but Mum's rose has multi-bloomed beautifully every year since - just as if Mum didn't like where we were living (neither did we!) but now loves it!
Keep your spirits up gardeners - spring is on its way flowers

Callistemon Thu 14-Jan-21 15:29:00

5litres should be more than enough fourormore, especially if you only have a couple of plants.
I think the bafpg I bought was 5litres and I had quite a number of orchids which I repotted, nurtured and lovingly cared for but they all died.

Treat 'em mean, don't kill them with kindness as I did!

Callistemon Thu 14-Jan-21 15:29:14


fourormore Thu 14-Jan-21 17:50:46

Thanks everyone!

JackyB Thu 14-Jan-21 19:22:42

Twice a year? I was given an orchid when I retired over 2 years flowered for a good while then the flowers died. I kept it going on the kitchen windowsill and it has only just flowered again.