Melinda's Gardening How To: Success with Orchids - Pasquesi Home and Gardens
Success with Orchids

Melinda’s Gardening How To: Success with Orchids

These living bouquets provide months of beauty with minimal care. Simply provide the proper growing conditions and success is sure to follow.

 

Selection

  • Purchase a healthy plant.
    • Orchids at Pasquesi have been handled with care from the time they arrive at the store until they head to your home.
  • Consider starting with Phalaenopsis or moth orchid
    • It is best adapted to your home environment and easiest orchid to grow.
    • Requires same care as an African violet.

Proper Care
Orchid Growing Mix

  • A combination of organic material such as peat, fir bark and perlite.
    • This combination retains water while providing needed drainage

Watering

  • Water thoroughly just as the potting mix beings to dry, about once a week
    • Pour off any excess water that collects in the saucer
    • Overwatering can lead to root rot and death of your plant.

Light

  • Place your plant in a bright location
    • near an east-, west- or slightly shaded, south-facing window
    • provide 12 to 14 hours of sunlight for best results
    • give plants in less light a boost with artificial lights
      • more energy efficient bulbs in newer styles are now available
      • look for those that clip onto pots or can be mounted on the wall for a more attractive display and ease of use

Humidity

  • Group them with other orchids and indoor plants.
    • as one plant loses moisture, transpires, the other nearby plants will benefit from the increase in humidity
    • grouping plants together also creates a beautiful display while improving the growing conditions
  • Or create humidity trays.
    • place pebbles in the saucer and the pot on top of the pebbles
    • allow excess water to collect in the pebbles below the pot
    • as this water evaporates it increases the humidity around your plant

Fertilization

  • fertilize actively growing plants with an orchid fertilizer or flowering plant fertilizer labeled for African violets
  • follow label directions for rates and timing of applications

Post Flowering Care

  • grow in a brightly lit location
  • continue to water and fertilize as needed
  • enjoy the greenery and if you like, try to encourage another set of flowers

Reblooming Your Phalaenopsis Orchid

  • Manage the flowering stem once blossoms fade
    • leave the flower stem intact and plant may produce a second flush of smaller flowers at the tip of the stem
    • OR cut back the flowering stem between the second or third node from the bottom
    • Or cut the flower stem back to about ½” above the base of the plant
      • allows the plant to restore energy spent on flowering and grow stronger roots
      • usually yields the best results
      • use this method for all other orchids
  • Shorter days of fall and winter and cooler night temperatures encourage flowering
  • Continue to provide proper care and wait to see if you were successful

And if reblooming your orchid sounds like too much work, simply treat it like a long-lasting bouquet. That way, there’s no guilt if you decide to toss it into the compost pile.  And if the guilt is too much, just look for an avid gardener. There’s always someone willing to adopt and try to rebloom your non-flowering plant.

 

Written by gardening expert, Melinda Myers. Melinda Myers is a nationally recognized gardening expert with more than 30 years of horticulture experience. She is a wealth of knowledge and we are pleased to share Melinda’s Gardening How-To with you!

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