Orchids rather unfairly have a reputation of being rather finicky plants to take care of but that’s not necessarily the case. Whilst it is true that ensuring your orchids bloom (and re-bloom the following year) takes a few careful steps they are not nearly as complicated to look after as people think.
Don’t be intimidated. They are spectacularly beautiful plants that add a touch of the exotic as well as an immediate elegance to your home. Whether you’re growing your own orchids or you’ve bought a potted orchid and want to ensure it re-blooms next year just follow these simple tips to make sure your orchids bloom like champions every time.
Tip 1: Get the light right
Orchids do well with a good source of light but not an overabundance. In simple terms it’s important to find a place in a room with plenty of light to energise the plant but this shouldn’t be in direct sunlight where possible. If the flowers are not blooming as much as they should and the plant is in a dark or shady position in the room then this could be the reason. Try moving it to a slightly brighter place.
Tip 2: Keep the soil wet and humid
Orchids like it a little wet but not soaking wet. They’re naturally accustomed to humid but not swampy locations in jungles, where they are constantly hydrated by light, regular rain showers. They need about 70 per cent humidity in the pot to really flourish. Normally potted orchids come with a suitable soil or growing medium to allow good drainage of the roots. Therefore the only thing you need to do is make sure they good drink every few days or once a week so the soil stays moist. You shouldn’t need to drench them as the growing medium will normally do the job of absorbing the water and keeping the moisture amongst the roots.
Tip 3: A little fresh air goes a long way
Orchids may be popular indoor plants but they don’t like stale air. Like all plants they evolved to grow outside, albeit in the selective conditions of their native climate. It’s a good idea to crack open a window in the room they’re in every so often so they can get a breath of fresh air. One tip however is to avoid placing them in the way of strong breezes and cold draughts as that will almost certainly slow down any new flower growths.
A few other things to consider:
- Add a drop of fertiliser every couple of weeks
- Keep the temperature consistent
- Drop the temperature a little overnight if the room is heated
- Use tepid or lukewarm water to feed it
- The colour of the roots is normally a good clue to if your orchids need hydrating. If they’re looking a bit grey or brown, give them a drink.
As you can see orchids aren’t nearly as highly strung as they might appear. It’s true that they’re quite elaborate plants but with a few steps they can bloom beautifully for you.
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