Orchid


QUICK REFERENCE PLANTING GUIDE

 1. Light- As indicated below:

  1. Phalaenopsis - Moderate light, 70 - 80% shade, no direct sun.
  1. Dendrobium - 25 - 50% shade, brighter in winter.
  1. Paphiopedlum - Place in any bright window but protect from mid-day sun.
  1. Oncidium - Bright filtered light, 35 - 65% shade.
  1. Brassavola - Medium to high.

2. USDA Hardiness Zones - House plant.

3. Temperature - As indicated below.

  1. Phalaenopsis - 65 - 90 F days, 55 - 70 F nights.
  1. Dendrobium - 70 - 90 F days, 45 - 65 F nights.
  1. Paphiopedlum - 75 - 85 F days, 65 - 70 F nights.
  1. Oncidium - 70 - 85 F days, 50 - 65 F nights.
  1. Brassavola  - 65 - 90 F days, 55 - 70 F nights.

4. Water - As indicated below.

  1. Phalaenopsis - Keep evenly moist, avoid wet foliage.
  1. Dendrobium - Keep almost moist, drier in winter.
  1. Paphiopedlum - Keep evenly moist, avoid wet foliage
  1. Oncidium - Allow to dry between waterings.
  1. Brassavola  - Keep almost moist, water just before they near drying out.

5. Humidity - As indicated below.

  1. Phalaenopsis - 50 - 75%
  1. Dendrobium - 50 - 75%
  1. Paphiopedlum - 50- 75%
  1. Oncidium - 40 - 75%
  1. Brassavola - 60 - 70%

Note: You can boost the humidity level around your plant with a humidity tray, or by filling a shallow tray with gravel and water then placing the pot in the tray.  The water level should be slightly below the gravel so that the pot is not submerged in the water.

6. Bloom Time - Sporadically year round.

7. Feeding - Twice a month during growing season, less in winter.

GET THE MOST ENJOYMENT

Over the past years, orchids have further evolved to allow them to grow in numerous environments. To date, there are over 35,000 species and that number continues to rise.  Most orchids are highly fragrant, even more so at night than during the day, and they attract pollinators of all sorts:  bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and insects.  Not only do they use their scent to attract these creatures, but their flowers shapes, which are made to mimic insects.  Orchids come in an uncountable number of shapes, sizes, and colors.  These plants rely on certain light conditions and a certain amount of humidity in order to produce their long-lasting sprays of brilliantly colored flowers.  Most orchids come from warm, tropical areas, yet they have adapted to thrive in the average home’s temperature. 

VARIETAL INFORMATION

Dendrobium (den-DROH-bee-um) There is over one thousand species of dendrobiums available.  These eastern hemisphere natives boast flowers that range from small to large and grow on long lasting sprays.  Uncut flowers will flourish for months and cut sprays can last about one month. They are easy to grow and have multiple blooming times throughout the year.  Dendrobiums come in a variety of colors including: white, cream, purple, violet, lavender, red, magenta, fuchsia, pink, orange, yellow, green, and bicolor.

Phalaenopsis (fal-en-OPP-sis) is also known as the “Moth Orchid”, this plant makes a terrific house plant. This highly floriferous orchid has long sprays of good-sized flowers.  They are often found to have multiple sprays and some varieties are even scented.  Uncut blooms last up to four months and up to a month if cut.  Phals come in a wide variety of colors including: white, purple, lavender, pink, yellow, green, and red.  They may also be bicolor and/or mottled, speckled, and striped.

Paphiopedilum (paff-ee-oh-PED-i-lum) are semi-terrestrials and grow on top of the ground and over rocks.  They are one of the easiest orchids to grow and do well in the average home’s temperature.  Their blooms last 3-4 weeks and they are among the longest lasting and most exotic of all orchids.  The Paphiopedilum orchids included in this offer are bicolor and will vary in shades of green, burgundy, or yellow.  Some may have stripes, speckles, and spots.

Oncidium (on-SEE-dee-um) These ruffled beauties, also known as “dancing ladies” are native to tropical areas. Flowers grow in a spray form and vary in size.  This type of orchid is easily grown indoors or on a screened in patio (in warmer climates).  Uncut Oncidium blooms can last months and up to 2 weeks in a cut arrangement.  They are generally yellow or pink and often come speckled with orange, red, and brown.

Brassavola (bra-SAH-vo-la) This “Lady of the night” is one of the most popular orchids.  It is wonderfully fragrant and prefers average indoor temperatures.  Brassavolas are easily grown and are very adaptable.  Their star-shaped flowers range from white and cream to greenish-white and often have purple speckles.  Uncut stalks keep flowers several weeks and cut flowers usually last about 5 days.  They generally have more than one blooming period a year. 

REPOTTING YOUR ORCHIDS

Begin your potting session by sterilizing your cutting tools. Remember to re-sterilize between plants.

Phalaenopsis:  Repot in new potting media (Phalaenopsis Mix) once a year. 

Remove the Phalaenopsis from its pot using whatever tools necessary. Remove as much old medium from the roots as possible.

 

Using sterilized shears, cut away old dead roots; those that are dry and shriveled or soft and mushy.

 

Select a pot size that will accommodate the roots comfortably, roughly 1/3 to 1/2 the total leaf span is a good rule of thumb.

 

Because plastic pots are lightweight and Phalaenopsis tend to have tall flower spikes you can use some river rock landscape stones as drainage material to keep the flowering plant from being top-heavy if planting in a plastic container.

 

Center the orchid in the pot with the leaves about a half inch below the rim of the pot. Begin adding the planting media. Allow the leaves to sit above the media... do not cover the base of the plant.

 

Even though the media may seem to hold the plant firmly you should use a pot clip. Either a standard rhizome clip (tightened up for the plastic) or a special clip for plastic pots will serve to anchor the plant by pressing the media against the root mass.

 

 Dendrobium:  Repot in new potting media (Special Orchid Mix) every 2 years.  

 

When the plant has finished flowering and is showing new growth, it is a good time to get it into fresh media.

 

If planted in a plastic pot, squeeze the pot all around to loosen the plant from the pot. It should easily lift out. If not, use a lever to gently pry the plant out of the pot. If the orchid is in a clay pot, use a knife or lever to free the roots and remove the plant.

 

Remove the old potting media from the roots of the plant with your fingers.  Cut off the old bloom spike and carefully begin trimming away old dead roots. If there are any old shriveled pseudobulbs that appear to be seedling growth, you may remove them for a better fit in the new pot.

 

Because evergreen dendrobiums have short rhizomes and fine roots they can be potted in small pots. They also appreciate ample moisture when they are in growth so the use of a plastic pot is a good idea. Select a size that will allow for about two years growth.

 

Add media to within a half inch of the pot rim, do not bury the base of the pseudobulbs. Use a rhizome clip to secure the plant. You may need to tighten a standard clip to fit a plastic pot.

 

Depending on the height of the Dendrobium, you may need to use a straight stake to further stabilize the plant.

 

Paphiopedlium:  Repot in new growing media once a year (Orchid Bark).

 

When the plant has finished flowering, it is a good time to get it into fresh media.  They prefer to be potted in as small a pot as possible.

 

If planted in a plastic pot, squeeze the pot all around to loosen the plant from the pot. It should easily lift out. If not, use a lever to gently pry the plant out of the pot. If the orchid is in a clay pot, use a knife or lever to free the roots and remove the plant.

 

Remove the old potting media from the roots of the plant with your fingers.  Carefully begin trimming away old dead roots.

 

Select a pot that is only large enough to accommodate the roots comfortably. If you need to force the root mass into the pot, then it is not quite large enough and you may need one size larger. A general rule of thumb is not to use any pot larger than what comfortably accommodates the roots.

 

Set your plant into the pot and begin adding your orchid potting mix. Work the mix in between the roots by gently shaking or tamping the pot to allow the mix to fill in between the root crevasses. 

 

Press the media down to firm it against the orchid roots

 

Oncidium and Brassavola:  Repot in new potting media (Special Orchid Mix) every 2 years.

 

If planted in a plastic pot, squeeze the pot all around to loosen the plant from the pot. It should easily lift out. If not, use a lever to gently pry the plant out of the pot. If the Oncidium is in a clay pot, use a knife or lever to free the roots and remove the plant.

 

Remove the old potting media from the roots of the plant with your fingers.  Cut off the old bloom spike and carefully begin trimming away old dead roots. If there are any old pseudobulbs at the back of the plant that are leafless or severely shriveled you can remove them for a better fit in the new pot. Remove any old bloom spikes.  Cut away any old dead roots. It should be easy to tell dead roots from live roots with most Oncidium alliance orchids. Live roots will be firm and generally white. Dead roots will be soft and generally brown.

 

Select a pot that will allow for about two years growth. Choose plastic or clay based upon your growing conditions and watering habits. Place some drainage material in the bottom of the pot.

 

Place the orchid with the oldest part against the rim of the pot and the new growth toward the center. Add potting media all around the pot to within one half inch of the rim. Do not cover the base of the pseudobulbs. 

Press the media down to firm it against the orchid roots.

 

CAUTION: Not all plant material is edible. Though most plants are harmless, some contain toxic substances which can cause headaches, nausea, dizziness, or other discomforts. As a general rule, only known food products should be eaten. In case of ingestion, please contact your local poison control center at once and advise them of the plant ingested. Keep out of reach of children.