orchid-care-header.jpg

How to Care for Your Orchid

Our knowledgeable team will work with you to find the best orchids to fit your environment and experience level. We strive to be the team you turn to as your go-to resource for expert level advice and award-winning orchids. We encourage you to use these care tips and to reach out to us if you have any questions.

 

 
 

Secrets to Success

Tips and Tricks for better orchid culture for beginners and advanced growers

Watering Tips

  1. When watering orchids make sure the mix is thoroughly wetted. Water orchids from the top and try to flush the pots and saturate the mix.

  2. Why water from top? Leaving dry spots in center of mix can allow areas of mold or fungus to grow in the mix. Also, through watering will flush accumulating salts from concentrating in the media.

  3. Use the pot stick (label) as an indicator to determine if the media is still wet. Wait a few days after watering and test the moisture level of the mix be inserting the label into the mix. Residual moisture on the label should be evident by placing the label on your cheek or forearm. If the pot tag is still wet wait a few days and repeat the test. Water when the mix is just on the dry side.

  4. Why test the mix? Orchids need to be kept evenly moist but do have ‘rest’ periods throughout their growth cycle. It is important to know that much of the time orchids grow best in evenly moist conditions.

Fertilizer Tips

Why water then fertilize? Orchids don’t like high concentrations of salts (fertilizer is a type of salt) because high salt concentration can burn and destroy orchid roots.

Why water then fertilize?

Orchids don’t like high concentrations of salts (fertilizer is a type of salt) because high salt concentration can burn and destroy orchid roots.

  1. Use a gallon plastic bottle (milk container) as a fertilizer container. Add ½ teaspoon of fertilizer to 1 gallon of water. This fertilizer can be stored in a dark place until its used.

  2. Fertilize your orchids by adding 1-2 cups of the fertilizer solution to the plant after you have watered.

  3. Fertilizer can be applied every other time the plant is watered during warmer spring summer months. Begin to reduce application in the Fall (Oct) by fertilizing less frequently. Beginning in March as the days lengthen, application frequency can be resumed.

  4. Why Reduce Fertilizer in Winter? Orchids use much less fertilizer in the shorter days and lower light conditions of fall and winter months in the Northern Hemisphere. Fertilizer use by the plant is proportional to day length and light intensity.

  5. Why Fertilize? Regular fertilizer application enhances flowering but must be applied at regular intervals throughout a plant’s growth cycle to affect flowering. Fertilizer applied once just before the plant blooms does not have the same effect as food given throughout the year.

Air Circulation Tips

  1. Try placing a small clip-on muffin fan positioned near the plant growing area. Air movement should be gentle and the direction should be horizontal and just above the foliage. The leaves should be moving slightly.

  2. Why provide air movement? Pathogens such as fungus, mold and bacteria grow in wet areas. Fans provide air movement which evaporates the water and pathogens have more difficulty taking hold. Also, air movement strengthens the cell walls of plants and helps create stronger flower stems and leaves.

    Looking for additional tips and tricks? Contact the Marlow Orchids team today!