A Home Gardener’s Guide to Care and Maintenance for Orchids
Known as an exotic flower, orchids as a species numbers more than 20,000 different types across the globe. It is a flower often linked to fertility and sexuality, as well as love and elegance. Orchids are also one of the most preferred endeavors for many home gardeners. While it is known to be a difficult flower to grow, it is actually not hard to care for, as long as you know the proper way to do it.
Orchid’s Light Preference
The best location for an orchid is one frequented by light, such as near a window. The best direction in which to place it is along south- and east-facing windows. These directions garner the most stable quality of sunlight. West-facing windows tend to be too hot in the afternoon and the north-facing ones can be too dark.
Even so, be careful not to expose your orchids directly to sunlight because intense rays can easily burn the leaves. Take care not to let the plant touch the window glass as well. The temperature of the window pane is conducted to the parts of the plant in contact with the glass.
As a rule of thumb, If your orchids’ leaves are light-to-medium green, it means you are providing them with sufficient lighting.
Potting an Orchid
Orchids thrive in moist, well-drained conditions. That is why the planting media need to be fresh, fast draining, yet water retentive. All of these are essential to healthy root growth. Some of the best growing media for orchids include redwood or fir bark, peat moss, charcoal, sand, or rocks. A combination of these can prove the key to growing orchids successfully.
Watering an Orchid Plant
Overwatering is far more damaging for an orchid plant than under-watering. Though an orchid loves moisture, constant moisture can cause its roots to quickly rot. Without healthy roots, the plant’s ability to absorb nourishment disappears. Typically, professionals advise home gardeners to water a day before the plant dries out. To figure out when that time is, you need to let your orchid go dry a little. Don’t worry, this will not kill your plant.
It is best to water orchids in the morning because it allows time in the day for moisture to completely evaporate from the foliage. To gain more knowledge regarding care and maintenance for orchids, consult with a professional florist, such as those at River Oaks Plant House.
Indoor Orchid Care, GardeningKnowHow.com
Orchid Care, AOS.org