7 Surprising Things You Didn’t Know About Caring For Orchids

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7 surprising things you didn't know about caring for orchids
7 surprising things you didn’t know about caring for orchids

If you are a fan of mystery writer Rex Stout, you know that he had his protagonist (Nero Wolfe) spend at least one uninterrupted hour daily sequestered in his orchard atrium.

The trials of orchid propagation and disease protection were described in such detail that I formed an impression that this plant was difficult and temperamental to grow.

Orchids are fairly inexpensive so you can have more than one in a room | 7 Surprising Things You Didn't Know About Caring For Orchids
Orchids are fairly inexpensive so you can have more than one in a room

Then I started using the moth or Phalaenopsis orchid as an accent plant in decorating and learned how easy they are to care for.

The addition of one of these blooming plants brings a room alive with a cheerful focal point.

The flowers last for 3 months or longer.

Because they are now readily available commercially and priced so well, it is possible to have at least one brightening up a room.

Orchid garden in Kauai | 7 Surprising Things You Didn't Know About Caring For Orchids
Orchid garden in Kauai

Do not be daunted by how exotic they look. It belies how tough and resilient they are.

You only need to see the outdoor orchid garden at a resort on Kauai, or the orchids growing wild on the trees lining ‘Alligator Alley’ in Florida to be convinced.

Keep reading to find 7 surprising things you didn’t know about caring for orchids.

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35 Responses

  • Wonderful tips and info, thanks! I only recently discovered the bloom stalks re-bloom! 🙂 I didn’t know many of these tips. Thank you!!!

    • I used to kill every orchid I owned, too, until I figured out that they really don’t need much attention…now they’re the easiest plants in my house. Good luck with the ones you still have!

  • I have an orchid that put out an 7 inch shoot from healthy looking mother plant. But instead of flower buds, it has roots and leaves. What and how is the best thing I should do now? Thanks in advance.

    • Hi Retta…It sounds like the plant is very happy in its location. The only thing I would do…add 1/8th tsp of orchid fertilizer to the water the next time it is watered. Then have patience. Hope this helps!

    • This new growth is called a Keiki, and is an orchid baby. When it has enough roots, it can be separated from the mother plant, and re-posted into loose orchid bark medium. 🙂

  • I love orchids I bought some and flowered beautiful. I was replanting one and the stems broke off . Can you tell me will it grow a new stalk or stalks it was a double or did I ruin it. Can you please let me know thankyou Lynn.

    • Hello Lynn, I think that your orchid will push out a new stem after it has had a 6 month dormant period. Some people cut the stem off at the plant after it has finished blooming. It is quite exciting to watch the new stems grow once they start.

  • I received a orchid 2yrs for birthday and it rebloom 2months after it loses it bloom! I finally got it right!

    • Hi Taurus…I suspect it will be a little too hot and sunny for your orchids to be happy outside. They usually like daytime temperatures between 70 and 80 degrees, and most do best with indirect light…you may be able to get away with it if you put them in a shady spot.

    • Thanks, Ruth! I didn’t know that! But I do have my thermostat set to drop the temperature at night in the winter so I think I have been unintentionally doing that 🙂

  • Good morning

    About a month ago I bought an orchid and it was doing beautifully. Then I decided to get another and when I put them next to each other the first orchid just close all the flowers they look kind of droopy, the roots look good and they’re not dry.

    What do I do?


    • Hello Barbara, Since most orchids are in bloom from one to two months, I guess that your first plant has finished blooming for now. You don’t know how long it was in bloom before you bought it and it sounds like a healthy plant. I don’t think the second plant’s proximity would affect the blossoms on another plant unless it is infested with mites or aphids. If you don’t see any signs of them on the leaves, I would put the droopy plant in an east window until it is warm enough to go outside for the summer.

  • I have a white orchid and decided to take it out of its pot Let It game originally from the store The Roots were all rotten I cleaned it all up and decided to do water culture on it it didn’t like it so I decided to put it back in Moss will it ever recover I have other orchids that are in full water culture and they are doing well

    • I’m sorry, Theresa, that your white orchid is not doing well in spite of your considerable efforts. I personally would trash it because it may have some disease or bacteria that could contaminate your other orchid plants. I would also treat the container it is in as contaminated and either disinfect it with bleach water or discard it. If you want to try one more thing to salvage the plant, you could repot it using orchard potting mix (bark chips) instead of moss. Moss prevents the dry cycle that orchid roots like. In this case, I would isolate the white orchid from the others until it looks healthy.

  • I have one. That the leaves are wilty looking i have had it for a while it is getting ready to bloom now but the leaves hsve me bugger i know it has something to do with water but I don’t know if its to much or not enough. Thank you

    • Hello Kathy, You must be doing something right if your orchid is getting ready to bloom. Try submersing your plant up to the pot rim in tepid water for one minute every two weeks. Be sure to drain it well after. I hope this helps.

  • Thank you I will try and will let you know how it is doing. I just love my orchids. Now I have one that has 4 spikes on it and flowers, first time I’ve had that many on one orchid. But thank you I will try soaking it. Kathy

    • Hello Pamela, Not to worry, your plant will bloom again. Eventually, you will see a new stem shooting out. The only reason I do not cut the old stems is that they sometimes (but not always) push out a blooming shoot from the old stem. I give my non blooming orchids a mild dose of orchid fertilizer once or twice a year. Good luck with yours.

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