Growing Orchids Part 1: Getting Started

Phalaenopsis

When deciding to venture into orchid ownership there are a few things to consider.  Light, temperature, humidity, watering and fertilizing are all factors that need to be ideal for your plant to survive.  None of these things are particularly time consuming, you just need to know what is best for our specific plant.  And if you have those conditions met everything else is simple.

The best way to be successful is to start out on the right foot. And that requires a healthy plant to begin with.  Flower shops, orchid trade shows and nurseries are the first places to look.  There are experts on hand to guide you through your purchases and since plants are their livelihood they are more invested in the quality they produce.  If you choose to purchase your orchid elsewhere where experienced staff may not be available to answer your questions here are a few guidelines to keep in mind when selecting a plant:

  • Roots should be healthy looking; meaning they are white, fleshy and plump.

 

  • Leaves should not be yellow or have red, brown or black spots on them. They should also be stiff and not hanging limply.

 

  • Choose a plant with multiple flower heads. Some species only flower once a year and you don’t want a plant that is just has just started or could be finishing blooming.

 

  • Try an easy variety to grow in the beginning such as Phalaenopsis, Paphiopedilum, Oncidium or Dendrobium. The better the chance of success means the more likely you will be to try other species as you get the hang of things.

Growing Orchids Part 2: Growing Conditions
Growing Orchids Part 3: Pests and Disease
Growing Orchids Part 4: Maintenance
Orchid Care Sheets

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