BiOrbAir Review – Growing Miniature Orchids in the BiOrbAir (part twenty-four)

Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium

Welcome to the twenty-fourth and final update from my BiOrbAir Review – Growing Miniature Orchids in the BiOrbAir!  Since my last update, I’ve been experiencing problems with both my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium’s LED lights and this terrarium’s ultra sonic misting unit.  Sadly, as a result of my BiOrbAir’s equipment faults I’ve had to close this Miniature Orchid BiOrbAir Trial; accordingly, this is the final installment and update for my Miniature Orchid BiOrbAir Trial.

I’ve enjoyed trialling different plants inside my BiOrbAir terrarium, but I’ve now ended this Trial, as the LED lights inside this BiOrbAir terrarium have now stopped operating at full brightness and this BiOrbAir’s ultra sonic misting unit has failed to work for sometime.  As the growing conditions inside this BiOrbAir terrarium changed, I became aware that these miniature orchids were starting to decline.  Naturally, I was anxious to provide my plants with optimum growing conditions; consequently, I’ve now emptied and disbanded the collection of miniature orchids I was growing inside this terrarium.  These plants have all now moved into various new enclosures inside my home.

Not long after I wrote my last trial instalment, I decided to move my Aerangis mystacidii plant from this BiOrbAir into another terrarium.  However, all of the other miniature orchids remained inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium until the 14th November 2020, when I finally emptied out this BiOrbAir terrarium and closed this Trial.  All of the pictures that you see in this update were taken whilst these orchids were still growing inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium.

If you’re interested in the orchids that I’ve grown inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, you’ll be able to continue following many of these plants in my regular updates for my various terrariums – just click on the link for each plant to see more information about that particular orchid species and find every article I’ve written about each of these orchids.

To see every update that relates to my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, please click here.

BiOrbAir Terrarium

The BiOrbAir is a specialised, automated terrarium, which was designed by Barry Reynolds, from BiOrb.  I first planted this Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium in August 2015, so at the time of writing – in December 2020 – this BiOrbAir terrarium is five years and four months old.

My Miniature Orchid BiOrbAir terrarium on 26th August.

This terrarium was purchased for me by my family, a kindness that I will remember always.  I had assumed that the BiOrbAir terrarium’s lights and misting unit would be more lasting.  My expectations were that if I did experience any problems with my BiOrbAir terrarium’s equipment, that I would be able to replace any individual parts as necessary.  I feel very disappointed that this hasn’t been possible.

BiOrbAir Terrarium Equipment Problems

I have five BiOrbAir terrariums.  Whilst the LED lights are still operating as normal in my other BiOrbAirs, all but two of my BiOrbAir’s misting units now no longer work.  Thankfully, all of my BiOrbAir terrariums’ fans are still currently operational.

Oase used to offer replacement misting units and other replacement parts on their website; sadly, the last few times that I visited Oase’s website, I found that these products were no longer listed.

BiOrbAir Terrarium Ultra Sonic Misting Unit Problems

I am not sure when this Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium’s ultra sonic misting unit stoped working.  I first realised that this BiOrbAir terrarium’s misting unit wouldn’t operate when I began investigating, after this BiOrbAir terrarium’s LED lights dimmed.  When I press the button that should trigger this BiOrbAir terrarium’s ultra sonic misting unit to produce an additional dose of mist, nothing happens; there seems to be nothing I can do to persuade this BiOrbAir’s misting unit to function!

BiOrbAir Terrarium LED Light Problems

This Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium’s LED lights are not operating at their optimum level; the lights appear to be half as bright as they once were.  I decided to end this Miniature Orchid Trial, as I was concerned about the effect that the reduced lighting was having on my miniature orchids.  I was particularly concerned, as this Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium was situated in a darker part of my home and so the plants inside were entirely reliant on my BiOrbAir terrarium for lighting.

As a result of the fault with this BiOrbAir terrarium’s LED lights and ultra sonic misting unit; I have emptied this terrarium and moved my plants to other terrariums.  However, every single one of the photographs you see here in this update, was taken whilst these miniature orchids were still growing inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium.

BiOrbAir Terrarium Trials

My Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, as pictured on the 26th August 2015.

If you would like to start at the very beginning, and read the first part of this Miniature Orchid Trial and BiOrbAir review, please click here.  If you’re interested, you can find all of the updates for my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium here.

I’ve carried out numerous Terrarium Trials, including lots of BiOrbAir Trials.  You’ll find all of my updates for my Madagascar Terrarium here, while the updates for my White Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium are here.  Or you can see updates from all of my BiOrbAir Trials, here.

Alternatively, visit my terrarium section here, to see more articles about terrariums and terrarium plants.

Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium Planting List:

These orchids were the last plants I grew inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium:

You’ll find more information about each of these plants (and all of the other orchids) I have trialled inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, in my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium Planting List.

As well as lots of plant info, my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium Planting List also includes the details of all of the nurseries and suppliers where I’ve purchased the plants, cork, and moss, for this Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium.

If you’re interested in finding plants for your terrarium, bottle garden or orchidarium, I’ve created a longer Planting List for Terrariums and Bottle Gardens – it’s full of ideas and advice, and also includes information on where I have purchased all of my plants and materials.

Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium Pests and Problems

Aphids

I’ve not experienced any outbreaks of aphids over the past year.  I am sure that there were a few aphids inside this Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, but since my last update I’ve not discovered any aphids.  I’ve been diligently continuing with my regular programme of using SB Plant Invigorator to control aphids and other pests.

Millipedes

I am actively trying to remove as many millipedes from my terrariums as possible!  However, catching a millipede isn’t the easiest task!  When I emptied out this Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, I found a number of millipedes living inside this terrarium.

Snails

Since my last update, these small mollusks haven’t caused too much damage.  However, there were still a few snails living inside this Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium when I emptied out this terrarium.

Terrarium mould

Following a previous outbreak of mould, all of the plants inside this Miniature Orchid Trial Terrarium were treated with a fungicide on the 14th January 2019.  On the 15th April 2019, the Macroclinium manabinum plant (and its mount) were again treated with a fungicide.  I’ve not used any fungicide, since this incident on the 15th April 2019.

Other horticulturists often advise me to use fungicide, but to be honest, I rarely use it – I don’t like to use either fungicides or pesticides.  Fungi and plants are complex and they have symbiotic relationships that we’re only now beginning to understand.  There are a great many types of fungi, which can both benefit plants and also harm plants; I don’t want to harm any fungi that may be beneficial to my orchids.

You can find out more about the general care I give to the plants inside my BiOrbAir terrariums via this link to an article I have written on this topic.

Conditions inside this Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium

Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium Humidity Levels

This chart shows the minimum and maximum humidity levels inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, from January 2020 through until the 14th November 2020. There are two wayward points in the readings; these are due to the tracking device running out of battery – no data is present for those periods.

Throughout the years that I have been running my various BiOrbAir Terrarium Trials, I have always hand misted the orchids that I have grown inside these enclosures.  My almost daily hand misting has increased the humidity levels inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium and improved the growing conditions for my miniature orchids.

Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium Temperatures

This chart shows the minimum and maximum temperatures inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, from January 2020 through until the 14th November 2020. There are two wayward points in the readings; these are due to the tracking device running out of battery – no data is present for those periods.

If you’re interested, I wrote this article explaining how I track the conditions inside my various terrariums.  I monitor the growing conditions for a wide range of the plants I grow, including houseplants grown inside my home, a range of edible plants grown inside my glasshouse, and cut flowers, vegetables, fruit, and herbs grown in my outdoor trials area.

Miniature Orchid Trial

Let me take you on my final tour of my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium – you’re very welcome to join me to discover how the plants inside this terrarium have grown and developed over the past year.

Ceratostylis philippinensis

Ceratostylis philippinensis, as pictured on the 14th February 2020.

This Ceratostylis philippinensis specimen was first introduced to my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir exactly three years ago, back in November 2017.

This miniature orchid has flowered regularly inside my BiOrbAir Terrarium – you can see the last flowers that this Ceratostylis philippinensis plant produced here in this update.  However, if you’re interested, you can see this Ceratostylis philippinensis specimen’s last flowering (in 2019), by clicking here.

Ceratostylis philippinensis, as pictured on the 14th February 2020.

If you’re thinking of growing a Ceratostylis philippinensis orchid inside your terrarium, do ensure that you can provide continual air circulation around your plant.  Ceratostylis philippinensis won’t be happy in an enclosure that doesn’t offer constant air movement.

Ceratostylis philippinensis, as pictured on the 14th February 2020.

My Ceratostylis philippinensis plant was growing near the top of my BiOrbAir, close to this terrarium’s fan.  This miniature orchid was very happy in this position, directly underneath the BiOrbAir’s LED lights and situated just below this terrarium’s fan.  Here, this miniature orchid benefitted from growing in the brightest possible light that a BiOrbAir terrarium can offer, as well as enjoying continual air movement around the plant’s leaves and roots, thanks to being in such close proximity to the BiOrbAir terrarium’s fan.

I will endeavour to improve this miniature orchid’s growing conditions in its new home.

Ceratostylis philippinensis, as pictured on the 14th February 2020.

A cheeky snail has had a nibble of this Ceratostylis philippinensis flower!  Thankfully, the snail only enjoyed a taster of the flower and so I was able to enjoy this Ceratostylis philippinensis inflorescence until the bloom naturally faded.

This orchid produces tiny blooms, so the damage to this Ceratostylis philippinensis flower was only visible in a close up photograph, it wasn’t noticeable in real life.

Ceratostylis philippinensis, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

This miniature orchid has lots of healthy roots and was growing happily inside the BiOrbAir terrarium.

Ceratostylis philippinensis, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

I really like Ceratostylis philippinensis’ spiky leaves.  Ceratostylis philippinensis plants have a charming natural form; large specimen’s form hedgehog-like plant-balls, made up of these lovely pine-needle-like leaves.

Ceratostylis philippinensis, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

While this miniature orchid was growing inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir, I decided to propagate this Ceratostylis philippinensis specimen by division; cutting through this plant’s roots to leave one larger specimen and a much smaller plant.  These two plants were one whole plant to start with; so naturally, both of these Ceratostylis philippinensis plants are genetically identical.

I am hoping that I can now supply these plants with an ideal environment and improved growing conditions, inside a new terrarium,

Ceratostylis philippinensis, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Diplocaulobium abbreviatum

Diplocaulobium abbreviatum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

This Diplocaulobium abbreviatum specimen has been growing inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, since I first planted up this terrarium, back in August 2015.  The picture above was taken in November 2020, but here’s a reminder of this same plant, as it appeared when this miniature orchid was first introduced to this terrarium, back in August 2015:

Here’s my Diplocaulobium abbreviatum plant, as it was pictured inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium on the 30th August 2015.

While here’s a reminder of this same Diplocaulobium abbreviatum plant today, as pictured just a few weeks ago:

Diplocaulobium abbreviatum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

This miniature orchid has been growing inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium for over five years, yet this Diplocaulobium abbreviatum plant has never flowered.  Looking at the plant now, it is clearly less leafy than it once was, which is a shame.  If you’re setting up a BiOrbAir terrarium, I wouldn’t recommend including a Diplocaulobium abbreviatum in your planting list.

Below you can see two photographs of this same plant pictured a year ago – back in December 2019 – when this Diplocaulobium abbreviatum plant appeared in much better health.

I took this photograph of Diplocaulobium abbreviatum on the 16th December 2019.
I took this photograph of Diplocaulobium abbreviatum on the 16th December 2019.

This miniature orchid has declined more than I expected after the BiOrbAir terrarium’s equipment faults.  I am unsure whether it’s possible to reverse this plant’s fortunes and restore this plant to better health, but this is what I shall endeavour to achieve.  I will now grow this Diplocaulobium abbreviatum specimen inside another of my terrariums.  I’ll let you know how this miniature orchid develops in my up coming terrarium updates.

Diplocaulobium abbreviatum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ in bloom, as pictured on the 27th December 2019.

This Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ specimen is another long-term resident of my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium.  I first introduced this Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ specimen to this enclosure back in January 2016, which as I write to you today was almost five years ago.  Here’s a photograph I took of my Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ plant when it arrived in the post:

Here’s a photograph of my Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ taken just after I received my parcel from Burnham nurseries.

When this Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ plant was first given over to my care, this was a dear little baby plant with about six leaves.  Fast forward to the present day – over four years later – and this miniature orchid has now developed into a substantial specimen, with a plethora of leaves.  This gorgeous Lepanthopsis tends to deliver more pronounced flowering events with more noticeable flowerings at certain times of year, but whenever I look closely at this miniature orchid I can almost always find at least one flowering stem.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ in bloom, as pictured on the 27th December 2019.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ thrives inside the BiOrbAir; this is a superb choice of miniature orchid to grow inside this terrarium.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’, as pictured on the 23rd January 2020.

I must confess that I am absolutely head over heals in love with Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’.  This miniature orchid holds a very special place in my heart.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’, as pictured on the 23rd January 2020.

I admire this miniature orchid’s leaves, flowers, form, and shape.  The overall character of this plant is just very endearing.  If I so much as glance at my Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky specimen, I’m reminded of how much I want to give this plant the best care and attention and I feel an intense desire to gaze lovingly at this tiny orchid, in my spare time.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’, as pictured on the 23rd January 2020.

Look at these adorable flowers!  Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ blooms remind me of cheerful little jesters.  These flowers are minute; due to their small size these blooms are not easy to photograph.  Fully open Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ flowers are about the size of a tip of a matchstick and the largest flower buds are the size of a pinhead, they really are minuscule!

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’, as pictured on the 23rd January 2020.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ flowers have a tiny sprinkling of twinkles, a gentle hint of iridescence.  Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ flowers look as if they have been made from jelly sweets, topped with finely milled sugar crystals.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’, as pictured on the 23rd January 2020.

It’s a rare event when I examine my Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ plant and don’t find at least one flowering stem; this miniature orchid usually displays at least one or two blooms.  While at other times of year, a flurry of floral activity can be seen, when this plant produces an abundance of star-shaped blooms that positively dance like a floral haze around this charming little plant.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ as pictured on the 30th April 2020.
Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ as pictured on the 30th April 2020.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ flowers aren’t perfumed, but they are utterly fascinating, being so dainty and displaying such beauty and character.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ as pictured on the 30th April 2020.
Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ as pictured on the 30th April 2020.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ doesn’t want to be grown under intense light.  A few years ago, I trialled growing Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ inside my Orchidarium, but this miniature orchid soon declined inside its new enclosure.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ as pictured on the 30th April 2020.
Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ in flower, as pictured on the 16th October 2020.

In the photograph above, you might be able to spot a self-seeded fern that is propelling itself out of the top of my Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ plant.  In October 2020, I managed to pull almost all of this fern out of my miniature orchid’s roots.  I’ll check this miniature orchid again in January, when I’ll remove any regrowth from this self-seeded fern, as I really don’t want a fern to grow in the centre of this plant.

A closer look at Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ in flower, as pictured on the 16th October 2020.

Self-seeded ferns can dominate plants; consequently, it’s wise to keep an eye on any new ferns that pop up inside your terrarium or orchidarium.  The main problems occur when a naturally vigorous growing, self-seeded fern springs up in amongst the roots of a miniature orchid that is less robust or smaller in stature than the fern.  A larger or more rampant growing fern can soon hamper a plant’s growth and quite literally overtake the orchid, stealing the plant’s light and water.

A closer look at these Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ flowers, as pictured on the 16th October 2020.

It’s wonderful to see a mass of Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ flowers!  Aren’t they pretty?

This Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ specimen has been in flower for a while. Pictured on the 16th October 2020.
A closer look at Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ in flower, as pictured on the 16th October 2020.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ is such a fun little orchid; these flowers always look like they’re having a good time!  This dear little orchid holds such a special place in my heart.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ flowers, as pictured on the 16th October 2020.

This is one of my favourite miniature orchids.  I hope and pray that I can find this Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ plant with a new enclosure and ideal growing conditions.  I sincerely want to ensure that this delightful miniature orchid will be as happy as this plant makes me.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ is absolutely and perfectly suited to growing inside the BiOrbAir terrarium.  This tiny little orchid has quite simply thrived inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium.  I just hope that I can find another terrarium where this orchid will be just as happy.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’ is one of my all time favourite orchids.  I am utterly head-over-heels in love with this miniature orchid!

Lepanthopsis astrophora ‘Stalky’, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Macroclinium manabinum

Macroclinium manabinum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Since my last update, this Macroclinium manabinum specimen has declined immeasurably and I’m now left with the remnants of a plant that’s a frail shadow of its former self.  I am hoping with all my heart that now I’ve removed this Macroclinium from my BiOrbAir that I will be able to revive this little orchid and secure its future.  I just hope that I’ve acted fast enough; I must confess that I am very doubtful of a good outcome for this specimen.  However, I will do all I can to improve this plant’s prospects.

If your orchids are declining, the sooner you make changes and improve their growing conditions, the better your plant’s chance of survival and the more likely it’ll be that you’ll be able to return your plant to better health.

A closer look at Macroclinium manabinum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Masdevallia rechingeriana

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 29th June 2020.

This Masdevallia rechingeriana specimen has been busy flowering through the months of June, July, August, September, and October 2020, inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium.

A closer look at this Masdevallia rechingeriana specimen’s flower bud, as pictured on the 29th June 2020.

This Masdevallia is one of the tallest miniature orchids that I’ve grown inside this BiOrbAir terrarium.

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 29th June 2020.

Over the past couple of years, this Masdevallia rechingeriana specimen’s leaves have become increasingly yellow.  It’s not a good look; I don’t like to see orchids with yellowing leaves.  If your orchid’s leaves are yellowing, this could be happening for a number of reasons – your plant may be receiving too much water, but this might not necessarily be the answer, as orchid leaves may also yellow if a plant is not getting enough water.

A closer look at one of this Masdevallia rechingeriana specimen’s yellowing leaves, as pictured on the 29th June 2020.

Light and temperature also have an affect on an orchid’s appearance; so it’s worth evaluating your plant’s growing conditions, if your orchid isn’t shining with health and vitality.  Pests and diseases can also affect the colour of your plant’s leaves as well affecting a plant’s overall demeanour.

A closer look at some of this Masdevallia rechingeriana specimen’s green and yellowing leaves, as pictured on the 29th June 2020.

In these photographs, you can clearly see just how yellow this Masdevallia rechingeriana‘s leaves have become – it’s not a good look!

A closer look at some of this Masdevallia rechingeriana specimen’s yellowing leaves, as pictured on the 29th June 2020.

Here are a couple of nicer green Masdevallia leaves; however, green leaves are in short supply for this miniature orchid!

A closer look at one of this Masdevallia rechingeriana specimen’s green leaves, as pictured on the 29th June 2020.
A closer look at this Masdevallia rechingeriana specimen’s flower bud, as pictured on the 29th June 2020.
A closer look at this Masdevallia rechingeriana specimen’s flower bud, as pictured on the 29th June 2020.

During my Miniature Orchid Trial, I’ve found that Masdevallia rechingeriana flowers reliably inside the BiOrbAir terrarium.  This is a great choice of orchid to include in your BiOrbAir terrarium.

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 7th July 2020.

However, if you’re thinking of growing this miniature orchid inside a BiOrbAir terrarium, remember that your Masdevallia rechingeriana plant will require regular hand misting.  The BiOrbAir’s misting unit doesn’t provide anywhere near sufficient moisture to water epiphytic orchids; especially Masdevallias that need a continually humid environment and lots of moisture, these plants will die without regular hand misting.

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 7th July 2020.

This is a very decorative orchid species.  Masdevallia rechingeriana flowers are a lovely, rich shade of burgundy, with yellow tips that resemble kisses; making these plants the ideal gift for your true love.

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 7th July 2020.
Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 7th July 2020.

Here you can see my Masdevallia rechingeriana plant in its full glory.  This orchid’s flowers are held above the plant’s foliage, there’s no danger of a bloom being hidden by a leaf, each flower really stands out.

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 7th July 2020.
Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 28th September 2020.

Masdevallia rechingeriana orchids thrive in a continually humid environment; these plants need to be surrounded by air that’s heavily laden with moisture, which is why this is an ideal plant for a terrarium.  This plant doesn’t require a drier dormant growing season or a number of months with cooler temperatures and lower humidity levels; instead this orchid species thrives in consistently moist, cool growing conditions.

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 28th September 2020.
Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 28th September 2020.

Although this was the tallest orchid I grew inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir terrarium, Masdevallia decumana sits very comfortably inside this enclosure.  There’s no risk of this miniature orchid’s blooms making contact with the top of my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium’s globe or being squashed against the outer edge of the BiOrbAir.

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 28th September 2020.
Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 28th September 2020.

I can’t detect any trace of perfume from these Masdevallia rechingeriana flowers.

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 28th September 2020.
Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Masdevallia rechingeriana flower stems are quite simply amazing!  These fascinating flowering stems are very long lasting, my plant’s flowering stems re-flower the following year; accordingly, if you’re growing this orchid, don’t make the mistake of cutting back any of your plant’s flowering stems until they have definitely faded.

It’s easy to tell whether a flowering stem is worth keeping, as Masdevallia rechingeriana flowering stems turn brown when they’ve died back properly and won’t flower again.  The green flowering stems will usually remain dormant over wintertime and then flower again the following spring.  I find that Masdevallia rechingeriana plants’ older flowering stems bloom ahead of the new season flowering stems, which flowers a little later in the growing season.

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

When one of this Masdevallia’s flowering stems fades and turns brown, I simply take a clean pair of scissors and remove the stem by cutting it off at the base.  These flowering stems will persist for at least another year.

Masdevallia rechingeriana, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Mediocalcar decoratum

Mediocalcar decoratum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

After I removed this miniature orchid from my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, I decided to divided the Mediocalcar decoratum plant to form a number of smaller plants, which you can see here.

A closer look at Mediocalcar decoratum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

This Mediocalcar decoratum orchid was given to me by a friend; so the plant means a lot to me.  This miniature orchid has never flowered inside my BiOrbAir terrarium; I am hoping that I can encourage these plants to flower by improving their growing conditions and introducing these little orchids to a couple of different enclosures.

Mediocalcar decoratum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.
Mediocalcar decoratum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

My Mediocalcar decoratum plant never flowered inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium.  Accordingly, I would not recommend Mediocalcar decoratum, if you’re looking for a miniature orchid to grow inside a BiOrbAir terrarium; there are many more preferable alternative plants you could grow inside this enclosure.

Mediocalcar decoratum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

I will now trial these Mediocalcar decoratum orchids inside some of my other terrariums.

Mediocalcar decoratum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.
A closer look at Mediocalcar decoratum, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Ornithocephalus manabina

Ornithocephalus manabina in bloom, as pictured on the 21st December 2019.

It’s such a joy to be able to share the beauty of these Ornithocephalus manabina blooms with you.  I am such a fan of Ornithocephalus manabina; this is a gorgeous miniature orchid!

A closer look at this Ornithocephalus manabina specimen’s developing flower buds, as pictured on the 21st December 2019.

This Ornithocephalus manabina specimen flowers so often.  This is such a floriferous orchid; it’s a real joy to have around.

A closer look at this Ornithocephalus manabina specimen’s developing flower buds, as pictured on the 21st December 2019.
A closer look at this Ornithocephalus manabina specimen’s developing flower buds, as pictured on the 21st December 2019.

This is a truly miniature sized orchid, so these flowers really are tiny.  I took these close up pictures of my Ornithocephalus manabina plant, using my macro lenses.

A closer look at this Ornithocephalus manabina specimen’s developing flower buds, as pictured on the 21st December 2019.
Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 14th January 2020.

I really appreciate the form of Ornithocephalus manabina‘s spiked leaves.  Even when this orchid is not flowering, Ornithocephalus manabina remains a handsome plant that’s a great addition to a terrarium.

Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 14th January 2020.
Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 14th January 2020.
Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 27th July 2020.

This year, I noticed that my Ornithocephalus manabina plant’s leaves have developed increasing shades of this uncomfortable yellow.  I don’t like to see orchids with yellowing leaves, yet I had a number of plants in this situation, inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrAir Terrarium!

Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 27th July 2020.

I love to see Ornithocephalus manabina flowers, but I probably enjoy seeing this particular orchid’s developing flower buds even more than I appreciate viewing this plant’s flowers.

Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 27th July 2020.
Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 24th August 2020.

Here’s another view of this orchid’s unhappy leaves.

Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 24th August 2020.
Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 24th August 2020.
Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 8th September 2020.

With each photograph, you can see the increasing severity of yellow leaves that this Ornithocephalus manabina plant is displaying.

Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Now that I’ve taken this orchid out of my BiOrbAir terrarium; I truly hope that I can find this Ornithocephalus manabina the perfect position to revive this plant’s fortunes inside one of my other terrariums.

Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

I hope that this miniature orchid will take on a happier green hue, when I finally manage to improve this plant’s growing conditions.

Ornithocephalus manabina, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Phalaenopsis ‘Purple Princess’

Phalaenopsis ‘Purple Princess’, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Phalaenopsis ‘Purple Princess hasn’t flowered for a while, but during the end of this plant’s tenure inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir terrarium, this plant started producing a new flowering stem.  This flowering stem is still in development as I write to you today in December 2020.

Phalaenopsis ‘Purple Princess’, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

In this photograph above, you can see my Phalaenopsis ‘Purple Princess’ plant’s lovely new roots, the remnants of this miniature orchid’s last flowering stem and the beginnings of a new Phalaenopsis ‘Purple Princess’ flowering stem.  How exciting!

Phalaenopsis ‘Purple Princess’, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

This Phalaenopsis is producing a number of gorgeous new roots, which is wonderful to see!  The brown hollow stem you can see touching this Phalaenopsis’ roots in my picture above is this Phalaenopsis ‘Purple Princess’ plant’s faded flowering stem, which was cut back after this orchid’s last flowering.  This stem is now a short stump; I’ve not cut it back any further so as to avoid damaging this orchid’s roots.

Phalaenopsis ‘Purple Princess’, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Restrepia seketii

Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 3rd March 2020.

I’ve not always found Restrepia seketii to be the most floriferous Restrepia species, but this Restrepia seketii specimen has been flowering at regular intervals inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, throughout the past year.

Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 3rd March 2020.

I think that Restrepia seketii is probably my favourite restrepia.  I just adore this Restrepia species’ pink and white blooms, which become even more attractive, as you examine them more closely; they really are stunning!

Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 8th March 2020.

I’m also charmed by Restrepia seketii’s demure size and this plant’s ability to fit comfortably inside almost any terrarium.  This particular Restrepia species is quite a bit smaller than the other Restrepia species I’ve grown inside the BiOrbAir terrarium.

Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 8th March 2020.

I’d recommend Restrepia seketii, as a great choice of orchid to grow inside a BiOrbAir terrarium.

If you decide to grow Restrepia seketii inside your own BiOrbAIr terrarium, don’t forget that this miniature orchid will require regular hand misting with rainwater or reverse osmosis water.  Avoid tap water, if you can, as our tap water tends to contain salts which are detrimental to orchids.  In their natural environment, most orchids are watered by very pure rainwater that’s free from salts and pollutants.

The BiOrbAir’s misting unit delivers enough moisture to create a humid environment, but the BiOrbAir’s misting unit won’t provide a heavy mist that will irrigate your orchids.  Additional hand misting is essential to grow orchids successfully inside the BiOrbAir terrarium.

Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 8th March 2020.
Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 22nd March 2020.

Restrepia seketii flowers aren’t fragrant, but they’re certainly very decorative.  I’m always thrilled when my Restrepia seketii plants bloom; these flowers really enhance my terrariums.

Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 22nd March 2020.
Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 21st April 2020.

As well as admiring Restrepia seketii flowers; I also admire this miniature orchid’s leaves.  Older leaves tend to develop a purplish hue, which I associate with being grown in an environment that is a little brighter than this orchid would choose.

A closer look at this Restrepia seketii specimen’s new flower buds, as pictured on the 21st April 2020.
Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 1st May 2020.
Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 1st May 2020.
Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 1st May 2020.
Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 1st May 2020.
Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 27th July 2020.

The spotted markings of pink and white on Restrepia seketii‘s flowers are quite mesmerising!

Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 27th July 2020.
Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

When my BiOrbAir’s LED lights started operating at a lower frequency, this Restrepia seketii specimen (and my other miniature orchids that were growing inside this terrarium) started to decline a little.  I am certain that I can improve this plant’s fortunes now that I’ve moved my Restrepia into another terrarium.

Restrepia seketii, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Trichoglottis pusilla

Trichoglottis pusilla, as pictured on the 14th November 2020.

Since my last update for this Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, this Trichoglottis pusilla plant has visibly declined.

Before I introduced this Trichoglottis pusilla plant into my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium (back in 2017), I had flowered this plant inside another terrarium.  However, this miniature orchid never flowered inside the BiOrbAir, and this is not a plant that I would encourage you to grow inside a BiOrbAir terrarium.

This Trichoglottis pusilla specimen gradually declined throughout its tenure inside my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium.  I will try and revive this orchid’s fortunes inside another terrarium but I am not overly hopeful that I will be successful.

This is the final installment from my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium; to see all of my articles about my Miniature Orchid Trial BiOrbAir Terrarium, please click here.

Other articles that may interest you………..

For more articles about terrariums, please click here.

To see my Tall Orchidarium being set up, please click here.

To see the first installment from my White Orchid Trail, please click here.

To see a planting list of orchids, ferns, and other plants that are suited to growing inside terrariums, please click here.

For ideas of houseplants you could grow indoors, please click here.

To see how my Rainforest Terrarium was set up, please click here.

Other articles you might like:

One thought on “BiOrbAir Review – Growing Miniature Orchids in the BiOrbAir (part twenty-four)

  1. Anne Liem

    December 18, 2020 at 4:35pm

    Simply magical. Happy Christmas.

    • Author

      Pumpkin Beth

      December 18, 2020 at 5:15pm

      Thank you, Anne! I am wishing you a very merry Christmas and a happy new year. I hope you’re safe and well in these difficult times. Warmest wishes, Beth

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