So I have a pumidor, which is pretty much just a cabinet off my living room that is now dedicated to puerh. Inside of it I have various wooden boxes, as well as glazed and partially glazed crocks. Any pu that comes in zip bags stays in zip bags, and cakes remain wrapped and are in the crocks. Most of the year it’s easy to maintain 60-70% humidity in there, but we’ve had a cold spell and now I’m down to 50%. The temp in my house is 68 degrees. I have two bowls of water and two Boveda 72% humidity packs inside the cabinet. None of this seems to be helping. It may get up to 55%, but when I go in the cabinet to get some tea, it drops precipitously.
I have considered getting a humidifier for the house to raise the humidity, but I guess my question is, can my tea survive another month or two of lowish humidity and be ok? My collection isn’t huge, but it represents a pretty sizable expenditure for me and I’d rather not ruin it.
The only way the humidity can go up is by raising the temp. Tea will maintain at those temps you have now. It won’t age much, but won’t get wrecked either. A couple months rest is fine.
Seasonal changes happen in Asia as well. The tea over there goes through the same types of shifts. It may not truly age as fast but over 50% rh you should be fine. Or you can send it to me for storage minus a small amount as a fee….
I agree, 50% is totally fine for a couple months. :-) 50% is about the point where the tea will be stable – won’t dry out but also won’t age much.
I vaguely remember a Teachat thread about Boveda humidity packs, something about them giving off ammonia.
Now that worries me. I need to investigate that as I use those packs with tea stored in cigar humidors.
Thank you mrmopar for the tip on humidor wick. Off to the shops I go.
Try to find a humidifier wick at your local mega mart. You can cut them and always just use distilled water on them.
Try to keep it in cardboard boxes. I keep it that way and it allows me to keep 18-20ºC and 60-70% of humidity while the house is at 16-18ºC (and 4ºC outside).
My theory is that the boxes keep temperatura 1 to 3 ºC higher inside so then humidity is higher as well. (the boxes has air flow).
I remember seeing in several posts in the net that storing puerh in cardboard boxes, at some height from the ground (say on top of cabinets) is an ideal form of storage. I suppose keeping them closer to the roof ensures that it is primarily hotter air circulating there.
That is how I store my cakes anyway – in cardboard boxes atop the cabinet. Of course, being in the tropics, the way I control humidity is by having huge bowls of desiccants everywhere inside the cabinet :-)
I wonder if you could find some safe method to introduce a small amount of heat under your water bowls to get them to evaporate some of that humidity into the air. Maybe a seed starter heating pad used for keeping plant trays warm?
At the very least you could only leave it on when you’re at home to make sure it is safe.