Orchids (Phalaenopsis) get a bad rep for being hard to take care of. But there’s actually not much to their care. Follow these steps and your orchids will look fantastic all year round! Remember that picking out the right orchid and performing initial care is crucial. If you mess it up, only luck will allow the orchid to survive. After that, it’s simple.
Picking out an orchid:
- Pick one that has the least opened blooms if you want to enjoy the flowers for longer (they can last ~3 months). You can pick your plant from a wide array of classic white and colourful orchids at Orchidya website. Learn more..
- Inspect plant for disease on blooms, leaves, and roots (commonly as black spots, craters, browning leaves, black roots).
- Always check the pot it’s in. Is there a clear inner pot inside the decorative pot? Always choose those over one directly potted into a planter (they usually have root rot, which can be fatal).
- Take it out of the pot to inspect all of the roots.
- If there are any black, brown, or flimsy dead pieces, cut them off. Green, white, and even slightly yellow (not brown) roots are fine.
- Wash your orchid’s roots with soap and water.
- If you have hydrogen peroxide, rinse it, leave it a minute, then rinse it off especially on any areas you cut.
- Get rid of the bark and moss in the pot. If it is breaking down, it will rot your plant. This is THE most common reason why the plants die. Repotting it into orchid bark also works for many people, but it’s more difficult. You can’t see the roots, it can rot, and you have to replace it once a year. We recommend doing water culture – put the orchid in a clear vase with water. Not only is this pretty, you can see the roots (which are a big indicator of the plant’s health).
- Place the plant in bright, indirect light, not full sun. This could be any room that gets natural light but it is best to keep it in a room the sun shines directly into.
- Keep the water level at least halfway covering the roots and NOT let it touch the bottom of the crown and replace the water every 1-2 weeks (or if algae grows).
- Get a spray orchid fertilizer and spray the roots and leaves (not the blooms) once a week.
- After the blooms fall off, cut the stem right to the base of the plant or you can leave it for awhile if you like the look of the stem. But you will need to cut it off if it browns or if you eventually want it to rebloom.
- Pay close attention to the orchid the first few weeks. Check it every day to make sure it’s acclimating well. This means healthy green leaves, no blackening of the roots etc.
- Old leaves on the bottom can turn yellow and drop (that’s normal, especially if it has a lot of leaves or grew new ones).