Orchid Care 101: Your Guide to Growing Orchids

Orchid Care 101: Your Guide to Growing Orchids : Don’t be terrified of orchids if you’re new. If you study their needs, many orchids are easy to grow. Different from potted plants. The epiphytes grow on tree bark rather than soil. Lady slippers are semi-terrestrial orchids that thrive in jungle floor loamy soil.


Orchid Care 101: Your Guide to Growing Orchids

Many wonder, “how do I care for orchids”? Orchid care is simple but different. Though orchids are difficult to grow, several types make great home plants. Orchids can bloom for months and live forever with proper care. Orchids are great blooming plants for this reason. A well-kept and varied orchid collection can bloom year-round. Good orchid care involves basic orchid growth understanding.



How does humidity and air movement affect orchids?

Orchids love dampness but not ‘wet feet’ Orchids planted indoors are generally on humidity trays. Water collects in the tray base as the plant is suspended above it. Commercial trays or cake pans filled with stones or inverted pot saucers can be used to elevate the orchid pot above water. So, the orchid benefits from water evaporation. It also helps orchids stay humid to be near together. Orchids like air movement, but dry air will dry them out. Too much moisture and little airflow can cause plant rot. Orchid care involves balancing humidity and airflow.



How much light do orchids need?

Understanding the right quantity of light for each orchid variety is crucial to their care. Even’high light’ orchids don’t need strong direct sunlight like a tomato plant, and even ‘low light’ orchids won’t thrive in the middle of a room without light. South windows may need shielding, but even a North window may not be enough for low-light orchids. Insufficient light typically prevents orchid flowering. Many high-light orchids love summering outside in dappled shade, which is the easiest method to give them enough light to blossom. Many high-light orchids will not bloom dependably inside without additional light unless they are in a sunny sun room or greenhouse. Orchids do well with broad-spectrum fluorescent and HID lighting. Orchids also receive natural light. Days lengthen and shorten. Our homes have nightlights and a consistent schedule year-round, which might disrupt an orchid’s natural clock.



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What temperature do orchids require?

Your orchid’s temperature depends on its type. Phalaenopsis orchids prefer mid-70s to mid-80s daytime temperatures. Dendrobiums prefer 10 degrees lower temperatures. Some orchids use the cold in Fall air or the difference between night and day temperatures to signal that it’s time to bloom. Many people desire a steady temperature in their houses, which conflicts with the orchid’s natural environment. It’s not all hopeless; recognizing the needs of the orchid you’re caring for can allow you to make modest adjustments and enjoy stunning orchid blooms. Some orchids grow warmly, while others grow intermediately or coolly, although most thrive at moderate temperatures. Knowing your orchids’ temperature preferences is helpful. Orchids that grow cooler can be placed near a cool window or in a cooler room.



Water orchids how?

Water orchids without overwatering. Actually, it is! Watering orchids is the hardest part of orchid maintenance. Orchids need different amounts of water depending on their type, mix, and habitat. As difficult for beginners as utilizing a recipe that says “baked until done”—what does that mean? The ‘proper’ amount of water is needed for orchids. Orchids dry out faster in warmer weather, therefore the proper amount changes by season. The goal is to adjust orchid watering frequency, pot type, mix type, mix density, and air circulation until each orchid is balanced. Time and patience pay off with orchid health and vigor, which increases blooms. Avoid watering orchids too little. Most orchids thrive when watered abundantly from the bottom of the pot until the plant and media are saturated. This usually involves putting the orchid in the sink and generously watering it. Some orchids can be watered on their humidity tray. After watering, the orchid should return to its growing place until the next watering, which may be a few days to a week later. A schedule, such watering on weekends and monitoring plants midweek, can assist. Wait—too little is better than too much.



How Often Do Orchids Bloom?

Our Phalaenopsis Orchid Care page explains its blooming habits. On our Cattleya Orchid Care page, we cover its blooming habits. See our illustrated page Demonstration of Orchid Staking for a walkthrough of staking bloom spikes.

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