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Caring for your orchid

Semi-sunny

Orchids like plenty of light, but not direct sunlight. Make sure the plant has a light spot, but do not put it in front of a south-facing window.

Room temperature

Keep the temperature in the room between 15 and 25 degrees, and make sure the plant is not standing in a draught or too close to a heater.

Watering

Give your orchid water every five to seven days. Either submerse the plant for five minutes in a bucket or sink or water with a watering can. Make sure that no water remains behind in the pot, or the roots may rot.

60 days of flowering

An orchid may flower for as long as 60 days or more. If you care for yours properly then it will surely flower for just as long.

No water in the pot

Ensure that no water remains behind in the pot after watering.

Non-edible!

Orchids are non-edible.

Blooming

My orchid has lost its buds and flowers. What am I doing wrong?
Orchids are tropical plants, so they thrive in warm climates. If it gets too cold, the roots of the orchid will no longer be active and the plant will lose its buds and flowers. If your orchid is overwatered, is kept in a draughty place, or gets too little light, it will not bloom as beautifully as it could.

Make sure the temperature is always at an average of 20 degrees (and at least 15 degrees). Keep a Phalaenopsis away from vegetables and fruit. As vegetables and fruit ripen, they produce the substance ethylene that can harm blooming orchids.

How can I rebloom my orchid?
The answer is simple: cut off the stalk above the third eye. Give the plant little water and do not feed it. Make sure the orchid is not placed in a very bright location. After a few months, your orchid will rebloom.

Growth

What should I do with roots on the surface of the pot?
Orchids can develop unsightly ‘air roots’ that grow out of the pot. Simply cut them off: these roots are unable to absorb water.

Is there something wrong if my orchid’s roots smell or turn brown or black?
Smelly or brown/black roots are a sign of rot. Healthy roots are pale green or grey.

What should I do with rotting roots?
You don’t need to throw out an orchid with rotting roots. If the plant has some healthy-looking air roots, you can use these to establish ‘new’ roots. Take the plant out of the pot, remove the rotting roots, and place the air roots in the pot with some fresh orchid compost.

My orchid is wilted. Should I give it more water?
Orchids that become too dry will tend to wilt or have grey, shrunken roots. Make sure you give it some more water.

What can I do about yellow leaves?
An overwatered orchid will turn yellow because the roots start to rot. If you think you haven’t overwatered your orchid, check the temperature of the water: it could be too cold. The plant will eventually shed any yellow leaves.

Compost and feed

What is the best compost for my orchid?
Orchids are fussy, especially when it comes to their roots. The compost needs to be a bit airy, and general compost is not airy enough. That’s why garden centres stock special orchid compost. Make sure you ask for bark compost.

What is the best feed for my orchid?
Orchids require special feed that you can buy at garden centres or florists.

Should I do something if I find insects and other bugs on my orchid?
You should not find any harmful insects such as lice, spider mite, and thrips on your orchid. If you do, your garden centre will definitely have a natural insecticide in stock. However, as Stolk Flora grows its orchids as naturally as possible, you may find the odd spider.

Are orchids poisonous?
Orchids are not poisonous plants, and they are not harmful to small children or pets. But for the record: orchids are definitely not edible.

Sunlight and temperature

What is the best place for my orchid in my house?
Orchids like plenty of light, but not direct sunlight, so avoid a place in your house that is in direct sunlight.

What is the ideal temperature for my orchid?
Even though orchids are tropical plants, you do not need to heat your house to tropical temperatures to keep your orchid healthy. Orchids thrive at temperatures around 20 degrees, but suffer at temperatures lower than 15 degrees.