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How to Plant Orchid Seeds


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Orchids are a particularly challenging plant to grow from seeds. Even expert growers sometimes have trouble growing orchids. Planting the orchid seeds is the most important step in growing the plants. The process is often misunderstood, because the seeds cannot simply be planted in a pot with soil. The seeds require a certain amount of fungus to grow. This makes the planting process nontraditional and difficult.

Difficulty:
Moderately Challenging

Instructions

things you’ll need:
  • Orchid seeds
  • Distilled water
  • Orchid agar
  • Two flasks
  • Cotton flask stopper
  • 3% hydrogen peroxide solution
  • Eye dropper
  • Small plastic pot
  • Styrofoam peanuts
  • Bark chunks

Sprouting the Seeds

  1. Allow the orchid seeds to float in a flask filled with distilled water.
  2. Pour a few ounces of the 3% hydrogen peroxide solution in the flask.
  3. Sterilize the flask. The flask must be sterilized to make sure bacteria and viruses do not affect the fungus growth. Whirl the solution around by spinning the flask in a circular motion.
  4. Pour the hydrogen peroxide solution out of the flask.
  5. Fill the flask about half-way with orchid agar. The orchid agar will provide nutrients for the orchid seeds to grow properly.
  6. Scatter the orchid seeds across the surface of the agar. Squeeze and hold the bulb of the eye dropper before inserting it into the distilled water that contains the seeds. Hold the eye dropper over the seeds and release your grip on the bulb. The seeds should flow into the body of the eyedropper. Hold the eyedropper over the flask containing the agar and squeeze the bulb to release the seeds and water.
  7. Cap the flask with the cotton flask stopper.
  8. Ensure that the seeds get approximately fourteen hours of sunlight everyday. After about 10 months, the seeds will be ready to be potted.

Potting the Plants

  1. Remove the plants from the agar. Once the roots are one quarter of an inch long, carefully pull them from the agar.
  2. Cover the bottom of the plastic pot with a few styrofoam peanuts. This will help to absorb and drain excess moisture from the pot.
  3. Fill the pot gradually with bark chunks to surround the plant roots. A few layers of the bark chunks should be laid before placing the roots in the pot. After placing the orchid roots into the pot, continue to gradually fill the pot with bark chunks.
  4. Re-pot the orchids every 12 to 18 months.

Tips & Warnings

  • Windows facing south or east usually provide the best sunlight for orchids.

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