Orchid Care - The Basics

Orchids are different from houseplants.
Unlike palms, ferns, or philodendrons, orchids grow on rocks and trees, not in the ground. In fact, planting an orchid in potting soil is probably a sure way to kill it. That's why you see orchids planted in bark, moss, coconut husks, etc.. Watering these different growing mediums can be tricky, even for experienced growers.

Our Hydroponic System eliminates all the guesswork of growing in bark or moss! Clay pebbles replace all other media and a water gauge tells you when to water. 

Orchids are tougher than most people think. In Nature, the orchid's root system absorbs water and nutrients from the the air and occassional rain shower. Their thick roots, leaves and stems are designed to store water when rain is scarce. Although some orchids are fussy, many adapt comfortably to most homes if they get enough light and correct watering. 

LightAll plants need light to live - this is especially true for orchids. Orchids enjoy as much light as possible - more than houseplants. Inadequate light will prevent your orchid from flowering. Leaf color is a good indicator if your plant is getting enough light. Orchids should have bright green leaves. Dark green leaves indicates your plant is not getting enough light. Yellowish-green or red leaves indicates your plant is getting too much light. How much light your orchid needs depends on what kind of orchid it is.
WaterPotting medium effects your plant's water requirements. Orchid growers use bark chips, spaghnum moss, styrofoam, etc. as potting material. Depending on where your orchid was grown (Hawaii, Florida, Taiwan) these planting materials will vary. That's why its not unusual to see identical orchids planted completely different potting mixes.

For a beginner this makes correct watering a mystery. Even experienced growers have trouble getting it right! The clay pebbles in our Hydroponic System replaces all these materials. And a water gauge tells you when and how much to water. What could be easier!

TemperatureOrchids do not require the hot, steamy weather found in the tropics.  Most orchids will adapt to the temperatures found in most homes. Even though your thermostat is set at one setting, temperatures can vary widely in your house. A sunny window can vary 30 degrees or more during the winter months.

Another difference between orchids and houseplants is that orchids experience a big difference between day and night temperatures.
At least a 10 degree drop in needed to initiate a flower bud, especially during fall and winter. This can be accomplished by setting the plant near a window where the temperature will automatically drop at night.

Orchids appreciate adequate humidity. During winter months they will gladly trade cooler temperatures for the hot, dry air from the furnace. Likewise, in the summer they enjoy warmer temperatures instead of the cool dry air from air-conditioners.
NutritionToo much fertilizer kills more orchids than too little. In fact, we've never seen an orchid die from a lack of fertilizer. However, a good nutrition program promotes healthy growth with good seasonal blooms.

Good nutrition can be difficult with a deteriorating potting mix. Our LECA pebbles never change so complete nutrition is easy with Hydoponics. 

Orchid Care for Specfic Types
     Cattleya Orchid Care
     Oncidium Orchid Care
     Paphiopedilum Orchid Care
     Phalaenopsis Orchid Care