How to Care for the Common Orchid


Orchids can be tough to grow because their natural environment is a tree. While it’s possible to grow them outdoors in the warm summer months, many people grow them inside using pots or indoor flower beds. These flowers are delicate and require care to ensure they grow strong and remain healthy. A little extra work and planning can go a long way when working with orchids. Orchids typically fall into separate groups, determined by light and temperature requirements.

Difficulty: Moderate


Things You’ll Need:

  • Pot
  • Root media such as peat moss, bark chips, perlite, coconut fiber or blue rock
  • Fertilizer
  1. Plant orchids using peat moss, bark chips, perlite, coconut fiber or blue rock. Air flow among the root system is essential for these plants.

  2. Repot orchids when you see new green shoots in the root system. Failing to do this can result in stunted or unhealthy plants.

  3. Water orchids that have soft foliage more often and those with heavy foliage less often. The plants will also need less water in winter, when they grow less.

  4. Fertilize orchids once or twice a month with appropriate material for the plant. Another option is to dilute fertilizer to 1/4 strength and fertilize the plants weekly.

  5. Review orchid leaves to determine if they are receiving enough light. Light to medium green is an indicator of sufficient light, while pale or yellowish-green leaves mean too much light.

  6. Maintain a temperature range of 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

  7. Mist orchid plants in the morning to maintain humidity. This may be unnecessary if you have other successful plants growing in the same area.

Tips & Warnings

  • Air circulation is important for growing orchids. A small fan or open window in the room with orchids helps to maintain temperature and humidity levels.

  • Common pests for orchids include aphids, mites, scales or mealy bugs. Chemical sprays are often available for these problems.

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