Archive for the 'Orchids' Category

Orchids Are Back Again

We have owned the two orchid plants in this picture for about 2-3 years now, and we have managed to get them to re-bloom again and again. Our current method involves filling a large plastic tub with about 7-8 inches of water, and then adding bloom and growth orchid fertilizers to it (1 TSP each). We soak all of our orchids in the bath for about 15-30 minutes every two weeks. We no longer water them in the kitchen sink because we have 4 orchids now, and they don’t fit in the sink.

They seem to love this watering and fertilizing technique. As soon as we cut back the old flower stems, they start growing new ones. The 2 larger plants never seem to be without flower stems. The purple orchid in this picture has two flower stems, and the white orchid in this picture has several smaller flower stems branching off of one larger stem.

Although one of our smaller orchids has not bloomed in about a year. I suspect that’s because it’s growing in moss which seems to be perpetually moist. Our larger orchids are growing in bark, which dries out much faster. We probably need to transplant this orchid into a larger pot with bark.

June 20 2010 | Orchids | 1 Comment »

Orchid Bloom Fertilizer

img_2333_m

We have three orchids that are growing indoors in pots. Initially, my partner was feeding our orchids with a 20-20-20 water soluble orchid fertilizer every 7-14 days. He would add about a tablespoon of the fertilizer to a water bath in our kitchen sink and soak the pots in it for 5-10 minutes. The orchids were growing slowing and generating flowers.

About 4 months ago, I learned that the 20-20-20 fertilizer tends to stimulate new growth and that an orchid bloom fertilizer will be more likely to simulate flower production. So I purchased an orchid 6-30-30 water soluble orchid bloom fertilizer. I started adding half a tablespoon of the 20-20-20 fertilizer and about half a tablespoon of the 6-30-30 bloom fertilizer to the water bath before soaking the orchids for about 15-30 minutes. I am now fertilizing/watering them every 2 weeks.

Since I started giving our orchids the bloom formula and soaking them for a longer time, our orchids have been generating many more flowers. Our white orchid in the above picture started growing a new stem of flowers off of a flower stem that has been blooming since March. It now has over 20 flowers open at once. The first flowers on this stem that opened in March (see my April 11 post) are still open and show no signs of wilting yet.

July 05 2009 | Orchids | 1 Comment »

Second Hand Orchid Blooming

img_2080_m

Last summer, my sister gave us an orchid plant that she had purchased some time ago. It had flowers on it when she bought it, but it had not bloomed again in the years since then. She gave it to us to see if we could get it to bloom again.

We soaked the orchid in a water bath with orchid fertilizer every 7-14 days, along with our other orchid plant, as described in my Nov. 4, 2008 post. After about two months, her orchid began to generate a new stem of flowers. That flower stem has been growing for about six months. It is now in full bloom. All 10 of the white and pink flowers on the stem are open at the same time right now. The first flower on the stem opened over a month ago.

I don’t often see orchids being sold in stores that have many flowers on a single stem all opened at the same time and all looking so perfect. I used to think it was difficult, if not impossible, to get orchids to bloom again and again indoors. But now that we have figured out the trick, it seems easy. Our other orchid featured in my posts on Sept. 28 and Nov. 4, 2008 is already generating another flower stem.

April 11 2009 | Orchids | 1 Comment »

Fertilizing and Watering Orchids



Our purple Phalaenopsis orchid is in full bloom. My partner bought this orchid for me as a birthday gift last November from a local florist. After all of the original flowers died, he managed to get it to bloom again after repotting it in a larger container with tree bark and then watering and fertilizing it once a week.

Every week, he soaks our orchid plants in a water bath in our kitchen sink, as shown in the lower picture. He fills the sink up about halfway with a few gallons of water. He then adds about a teaspoon of orchid fertilizer to the water bath to form a weak solution. He lets the orchids soak in the water bath for about five minutes. After taking them out of the water bath, he lets them drain completely. Our orchid plant was virtually dormant before he began this fertilizing and watering routine. Since he started, it has grown several new leaves and generated the flowers shown in these pictures.

My sister gave us a second orchid plant last summer. It was in her apartment for some time, and she could not get it to bloom again after the original flowers died. My partner has also been soaking that orchid plant in the same water bath every week for the past several months. It too is now growing a new flower stem. This stem will probably grow for 5-6 months before it starts blooming.

November 04 2008 | Orchids | 1 Comment »

Orchid Blooming Again

We bought this orchid plant last fall. It had several blooms on two flowering stems. It looked great at the time, like most orchids do when they are sold to consumers.  But after a few weeks the flowers began to fade, and the flowering stems eventually stopped generating new flowers.

My partner then decided that he was going to get this orchid to bloom again. He first repotted it in a larger container with tree bark. Then, he began to fertilize it regularly. Every week, he fills our kitchen sink with water and a dash of orchid fertilizer, and soaks the orchid container in the water bath for several minutes.

After a few months, the orchid began to grow a new leaf. I was amazed, because I have not been able to get an orchid to grow a new leaf, let alone a new set of flowers.  It has now produced several new leaves.

A few months ago the orchid began to sprout a new stem. The stem has taken months to grow and generate buds. The buds on the new stem just began to open a few days ago. They look amazing.

September 28 2008 | Orchids | 3 Comments »