White orchids for the holidays...
Elegant and captivating, orchids will adapt to almost any home environment. The many varieties produce a myriad of colors, shapes and patterns but white blossoms seem perfect around the holidays. The addition of a few well-placed sprigs of fresh pine or stems of winterberries will customize the Phalaenopsis orchid for holiday gift giving or decor.
TIPS & CARE
- Orchids are tropical plants and, therefore prefer lots of water, humidity and warm temperatures. If your home is not very humid, misting the leaves and keeping the soil moist, but not soggy, will help the orchid to thrive. Grouping orchids in with other house plants will also increase humidity. Proper light is also essential: too much will cause leaves to yellow and wilt; too little will prevent blooms from appearing. Place the orchid near a sunny window so that it gets plenty of indirect light and warmth.
- You can fertilize with orchid-specific plant food and follow the package directions, which will give the orchid the proper balance of the major nutrients to keep it healthy and growing. A basic plant food can also be used, but use in smaller quantities than you would for other plants.
- It is important to repot orchids from time to time, for continued growth and bloom. To repot, gently remove the entire plant from its former container. Carefully remove any dead root material that may be present. Place the orchid in a pot just one size larger than its previous one; a large, new pot would be a difficult adjustment. Orchid potting mix is mostly bark, so be sure to fill in the new pot with the proper mix, pressing firmly on the top to secure the roots.
With a little knowledge and careful attention, anyone can grow beautiful orchids in their home. Orchids just need what we all need: water, food and room to grow!