Top 5 Orchid Care Questions and Answers (part 2)
3. How to care for an orchid?
Watering and humidity
For watering flowers, including orchids, it is better to use warm, standing water. Flowers are very sensitive to chlorine and lime found in tap water. Try boiling such water to soften and let it cool before watering. Better yet, pour melt or rain water at room temperature.
Watering should be done regularly, but sparingly throughout the year. In summer, orchids need more water and should be watered approximately every five days, in winter – once every 7-10 days. Make sure that moisture does not accumulate at the bottom of the flower pot and in the pan. When watering should take into account the dryness of the substrate and humidity.
The most favorable relative humidity is 40-60 percent, in summer it should be higher. You can increase the humidity around the plant by spraying them with warm water. It should be ensured that water does not remain in the recesses of the leaves, as this can lead to their decay.
At low air temperatures, spraying must be stopped. However, air humidity should be maintained constantly; to do this, place a cup of water near the plant. From a lack of water, the leaves wrinkle, and excess moisture leads to darkening and damage to the roots. That is, too little water is better than too much. Because water in excess can lead to decay of the roots of orchids.
The best way to water an orchid is to remove the plant from the flower pot and immerse it in soft water at room temperature for 10-30 minutes. Then allow all the water to drain, and only after that put the flower in place.
Vanda’s orchids have one very striking feature in their structure: their roots do not have pseudobulbs for water supply, therefore this type of orchid is especially susceptible to the frequency of watering. The roots of these orchids do not require soil, in nature they grow in places with air humidity up to 80 percent and absorb water from the environment. At home, they are often kept in low glass vases without a substrate.
The method of watering such orchids is as follows: water is poured into a vase with a plant, left for half an hour and then completely poured. In summer, watering is required daily or every other day, and spraying – every week, in winter – only watering every five to seven days.
Orchid loves the light, but in no case direct sunlight. Therefore, placing a flower in a lighted place in your home, you need to consider the time of year. Cover the curtains in summer, and in winter, on the contrary, add light with additional lighting, for example, fluorescent lamps.
The appearance of small brown or yellow spots on the orchid leaves indicates that the plant received a sunburn. Varieties of orchids with a dark color of leaves are most sensitive to light. From the leaves you can determine whether this gentle creature receives enough light. If the leaves began to darken – add light, if they began to turn yellow – there is an excess of light.
If you place an orchid on a windowsill, then a window facing west is most suitable. Southern orientation is undesirable due to the bright sun. In the north and east there is not enough light, which will inevitably lead to a slowdown in plant growth and minimize its flowering.
The recommended illumination for comfortable growth and flowering of orchids is 20 thousand lux in summer and 40 thousand lux in winter, which is approximately 20-30 percent of the “full” sun.
Oncidium Orchid (Oncidium)
The ideal room temperature for these subtropical plants is between
+ 19 ° C to + 24 ° C. At night, it is recommended not to lower the temperature below 17 degrees. The daily temperature difference is normally at least seven degrees. Orchids do not like to stand in a draft.
It is worthwhile to carefully monitor their orchids, how they react to certain conditions of detention, as for each type of orchids they can differ. This also applies to temperature conditions. One plant may need more heat, while another will feel better in coolness.
Never place these delicate flowers near heating appliances. Artificial heat sources dry the air. Constant overheating leads to dehydration and draining of the flower tissues, leaves and roots, which causes the death of the plant.