Wednesday, October 21, 2009

All about Growing Orchids Indoors

Phalaenopsis Orchid
Oncidium orchid


Orchids are very popular! Their blooms are among the most lovely living things that can grace your home. I have several that are many years old, and they are like a gift that keeps on giving.  With the right attention, orchids will grow beautifully for you and live for many years in your home.

I've found the Phalaenopsis, Dendrobiums, and Oncidiums to be quite easy to maintain, if you are regularly devoted to them. They do like bright light, or a little direct sun, although full afternoon sun is too much. An unobstructed north or east facing window is perfect.   Paphiopedilums or the Lady Slipper orchids prefer bright indirect light, no direct sun.  Both you and the orchids deserve the best care instructions you can get so here they are:
Oncidium orchid
 
Care Instructions:
  • Because of the bark media that they grow in, I've found the best way to water orchids is to,first, put them in the sink. A good thorough soak will make sure they are evenly watered. Let the water drain for a few minutes. Watering this way makes a big difference.
  • You can also spray their leaves when you do this, keeping them clean and giving them some instant humidity. It's best to let them dry out about 1/2" from the top of the media before watering. I do prefer using touch rather than time to decide when plants are ready to be watered. 
  • If you keep the temperature in your house below 70°F (or 21°C) in the winter, you shouldn't have to be concerned about the humidity levels, although a daily mist would always be appreciated. If your house temperature is over 70°F (or 21°C )in the winter, and if you keep your air conditioning below 75°F (or 24°C), you may want to place your orchid on a tray with pebbles in it and keep water in the tray just to the top of the pebbles so that the plant is not sitting in water. The evaporating water and a daily mist will definitely help.
  • Fertilize them regularly, except when they are blooming. You can use a specific orchid fertilizer or a general houseplant food, which works well, too.
  • Please click on comments, if you need any more information or have any questions about orchid care.  
~~~~~

**To see other plants on this blog click here:   The Indoor Garden blog
***For a variety of  video clips on houseplant care from my 90's TV series, click here:The Indoor Garden TV show