Phalaenopsis Orchid Plant Care
Learn how to look after phalaenopsis orchid during NZ Winter.
History of Orchid
The word ‘orchid’ was named by Theophrastos, an ancient Greek plant scientist who thought the roots of the orchid shared a resemblance to the male masculine anatomy. In a natural habitat, orchids plants are mainly epiphyte plants who love to grow around the trees and on rocks as opposed to growing in the ground.
The Orchid family are scientifically called Orchidaceae and are found in every natural habitat globally except iceberg areas. Different variations of orchids can be found around the tropical region.
Tropical orchids are available in many colours. Mostly famous for their bright colourful flowers that stand out visually. In fact, Orchidaceae are known to have over 25,000 different variants globally.
The most popular orchids are Phalaenopsis orchids, as they are one of the simple varieties to maintain in a home. Perfect for beginners due to the plant’s friendly nature. Phalaenopsis orchids originate from Indian, China, and Southeast Asia.
As a houseplant, Phalaenopsis with leafy stems will bloom bright, warm flowers once a year, up to three months. After the blooming phase, the flowers will start to fall off. But don’t worry, your orchid hasn’t died; instead, it’ll start to restore energy to re-bloom again for the next season.
How to look after Phalaenopsis
Orchids love to grow in good, bright, indirect light. Although they can endure medium indirect light.
Water the orchid every 1 to 2 weeks as potting soil needs to dry out between watering.
Remember to keep it damp but not overwater. Sometimes, you may have to water more frequently in brighter light and less watering in lower light.
Fertilize orchid once per month. After flowering, cut back to a strong bud to about 20 cm above the soil to encourage flower blooming. When repotting, choose Orchid Mix.
Orchid plants do not prefer dry air. Do make sure to keep the humidity levels around the plant from 50% to 70%. During autumn and winter, you can use a wireless 750ml humidifier to improve the humidity of your home.
Ideally, the home temperature should be around 18 to 23 degrees for orchids. Although, they can endure low as 12 degrees to high as 29 degrees.
Small Orchid Potting
You can pot small orchids in coco plug or sphagnum moss. Orchids can remain in this potting medium for 1 to 2 years. Once the roots and leaves start to grow out of the small pot, the orchid will require fresh nutrients and a bigger room. When repotting these orchids, choose an orchid mix.
Large Orchid Potting
Pot large orchids using bark. Bark will keep the grown roots healthy, as barks provide. Orchid needs efficient airflow since orchids are epiphytes that grow on trees in their natural habitat. Remember, the traditional potting mix will not work as roots will need airflow in them.
Issue 1: My orchid plant is wilting and wrinkling leaves.
Solution: Water it more as It’s most likely not watered enough.
Issue 2: Orchid Leaves are turning yellow
- Reduce watering if it has been overwatered.
- Reduce sun-light if it’s been exposed to a lot of sunlight.
Issue 3: Wilting flowers
Solution: It’s natural for orchid phalaenopsis’s flowers to fall off. This indicates that the blooming season is over, and the plant is restoring energy to re-bloom for the next season.