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The Orchid Place


Caring For Your Phalaenopsis

Light
Phalaenopsis orchids like a bright light, they do best in an east, west or shaded south window. Your orchid should not have direct sunlight during the noon hours. You can place your orchid under two 40 watt bulbs to increase the light exposure during low natural light months.

Temperature
Orchids like to have 70-85 degrees during the day and 60-65 degrees at night. This is very important to encourage re-flowering. (During very cold winter months be careful of the temperature near the window.)

Water
Your orchid plant likes to dry out between watering. Water your orchid thoroughly over a sink and allow to drain completely. Water again, once moss has dried out.
Watering once a week should be ideal. Room temperature water is best for plants, cold water is not recommended.

Humidity
Phalaenopsis like humidity. You can increase the humidity by placing your orchid on a tray of marbles, pebbles or gems and fillinhg it with water. As the water evaporates it will increase the humidity around your plant.
Note: If the orchid is placed on marbles, the water level absolutely should not reach the pot.

Fertilizer
Do not fertilize when flowers are in bloom. Fertilize your orchid once every other week, using an orchid fertilizer. If you are using regular fertilizer, a good balance would be 10-10-10, 12-12-12, or 20-20-20. If the fertilizer is too strong this will cause blooms to drop too quickly and hurt the plant. A healthy plant will hold a bloom for at least 2 months.

Potting
Your orchid will only need to have moss changed every two to three years. The potting medium should be an indicator of deeding new moss. If the potting medium has started to breakdown or has lost its color, change is necessary. It is not necessary to repot if roots are exposed; this is just an indication of a healthy plant. It is not recommended to repot plant, in a container larger than 6". When repotting/changing moss, cut any black roots you may see.
Ensure moss is thorougly wet before repotting, but wrung out, not dripping. After repotting, do not water for one week.

Re-flowering
After your orchid is done blooming, stem should be cut back above the second node from the base of the plant, or all the way to the base of the plant. Follow all care instructions paying close attention to the day temperature of 75 degrees and night temperature of 65 degrees; you will see a new stem sprout in approximately two months. The temperature change encourages re-flowering. A life of an orchid can be 10-20 years if taken care of properly.

Orchid Care Tips
Caution - Cigarette smoke will cause plants to drop blooms quickly.

Caution - No fruits near your plant - this lets off an ethylene gas. The ethylene gas is only harmful to the flower, but not to the entire plant.

Direct heat or air conditioning is not recommended.

Overfertilizing will cause your plant to drop blooms quickly.

Change moss every 2-3 years.

If a flower dries up, cut immediately.