orchids-white-purpleOrchid is certainly the most exotic of all flowers. Its fragile beauty and elegance makes it one of the most favorite corsage flowers.

You will find stunning array of shapes, sizes and colors of this lovely family of plants. Orchids grow wild all over the world except in the coldest climates. Some orchids are epiphytal and will grow on trees and rocks needing no soil.  The type terrestrial even grows in the ground like the Lady Slipper orchids. You can grow orchids almost everywhere.

Orchids Varieties

You can easily find innumerable hybrid varieties of orchids. Many are raised in greenhouses by florists but it is also a great hobby plant. They can be grown on the lanai, sun porch or in terrariums.

If you want to grow orchids inside your home you will need to have good ventilation and light, humidity, proper potting material with good drainage and timely watering and feeding.

You must know the preferences of the orchid you are growing. The different varieties prefer potting mediums with different moisture retention properties. Potting mediums to choose from include bark, tree fern, lava rock and a blown clay product called Aliflor.

Each variety of orchids may have different light requirements. Some tolerate full sun while others would burn if put in the sun. Watering twice a week and fertilizing once a month is a must for most varieties.

Cattleya is a variety of orchids which is the corsage orchid. It prefers bright light and will tolerate some morning sun. The Vanda or Ascocenda  will tolerate full sun outdoors. Dendrobiums like bright light but not quite full sun. Phalaenopsis is the perfect indoor orchid as it prefers filtered light and no direct sun. The paphiopedilum is another excellent plant for the home preferring shady conditions.

Protecting Orchids

If your orchids are not grown under cover, protecting them from wet weather, you should have a fungicide regiment as their leaves tend to develop fungal spots.

Take care and protect your orchids from insects because there are several insects which could attack orchids.  Insects like thrips, aphids, scale and mealybugs, mites, snails and slugs need to be kept away from orchids.

While using insecticides and fungicides it becomes extremely important to follow label directions so you don’t damage the plant. There are several safe and non-toxic sprays you can use as well as the usual chemicals like malathion.

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