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As a result of a previous question, I've decided to repot my Phalaenopsis orchid in bark once the blooms fall off. I understand that tree bark makes a better medium than the moss it's currently growing on. In addition, I have no way of knowing how long it's been since the plant has been repotted.

Do I need to buy a specialty bark medium designed for orchids or can I use bark from the cedar trees in front of my house?

(I'm not opposed to spending a bit of cash on this plant, but I do like the idea of reusing materials that are at hand if possible. Seems like a waste to get a bag of tree bark when I have more than I can use already.)

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You can buy small bags of orchid bark at most garden centers. I'm not sure it would like the cedar (due to the chemistry of cedar) unless the bark is well-weathered.

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This is merely my experience with Phalaenopsis, so take it with a grain of salt.

I've built up a collection of orchids bought at the grocery store on discount after their flowers died off, so they cost next to nothing.

Many I have just kept in the pots they came in, but so far two (I believe they are the oldest two I have) have gotten enough runners (or whatever the root-like things are called) that I've decided to repot them.

The first one I repotted in regular potting soil. I've learned since then that you aren't supposed to do that, but the plant is alive and making flowers today despite everything I've read.

The second one I repotted in my used tea. Again, from everything I read, that is a horrible idea, but the plant is doing fine. Both have flowered multiple times since I repotted them.

I have seen orchid mixture at the store, but it always seems pretty pricy to me (says the guy buying $5 manager special orchids).

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