Orchid Growing Tips?

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Oxalis
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Orchid Growing Tips?

Post by Oxalis » 29 Nov 2017, 05:05

Hello, hope all is well! I recently brought an orchid home from work since it wasn't doing well. I would never consider my house the "plant hospital," but I do know a few general tips. I've heard it helps growth to place indoor plants together, so I've been keeping this tiny little guy next to the rest of my houseplants and watering him thoroughly. He seems to be growing more. My husband suggested keeping the water in the pot for a couple minutes extra before draining it so the charcoal substrate could absorb some of the water. Watering once or twice per day seems to be helping. It's about an inch tall at the moment. Since it's pretty brown and small, I imagine it would be extremely difficult to identify the exact species, but you're welcome to guess. I've never grown an orchid before; any general orchid growing tips from the masters?

[attachment=0]orchid.jpg[/attachment]
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I <3 Stevie, my Russian tortoise!

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Nina
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Re: Orchid Growing Tips?

Post by Nina » 29 Nov 2017, 07:33

Ha, ha -- you don't pose easy questions, do you? I have no idea what it is, but one of the most common orchid houseplants here is the Phalaenopsis (sometimes called Moth Orchid). I have several of them and it looks a bit like that -- but not sure.

I don't know if there are tips that apply to all orchids, but Phalaenopsis like humid conditions, so what your hubby is saying is good. I have always been told that you should stand the pot they are in, in a saucer that has water and gravel in it, so that the pot sits on top of the bits of stone or gravel and roots don't actually touch the water, but it is there to provide humidity. And I've also been told that it is good to water them by putting them under the tap and letting the water run through the pot vigorously -- that will water the growing medium (we tend to use bark here, rather than charcoal, but charcoal is fine) but also flush out any salts etc. that have built up from previous waterings. And don't allow any water to get or remain on the leaves. The other thing about Phalaenopsis is that they are often sold in clear plastic pots here, is because they are epiphytic (grow on other plants, like trees, but they aren't parasitic), and their roots like to have light on them (but you do see them in opaque pots, so I don't think lack of light at the roots will kill them). It is easy to overwater them (and I've killed several that way).

I would google 'Phalaenopsis, care' and see what you get. Of course it could be another species, but that's my best guess. Do you remember what the flowers looked like, if it ever had any? Oh yes, and as far as I remember you can't feed them to Steve.

Nina xx

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Oxalis
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Re: Orchid Growing Tips?

Post by Oxalis » 29 Nov 2017, 22:26

Many thanks, Nina! And yes, I do like a good gardening challenge now and then. ;) I figured it wasn't good tortoise food, but was interested in trying to revive the little guy for the heck of it. Since it was my coworker's, I'm never seen the flowers on it. Thank you for narrowing it down to perhaps Phalaenopsis, which will help guide my research! Hubby has never grown an orchid either so he thanks you as well. :)
I <3 Stevie, my Russian tortoise!

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Nina
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Re: Orchid Growing Tips?

Post by Nina » 29 Nov 2017, 22:46

Well, actually it might well not be phalaenopsis, as the leaves on phalaenopsis are a bit broader than the ones I can see on what is left of your little plant. Dendrobium is another commonly sold orchid. Maybe you could google those two species and look at images to see if the leaves of yours look anything like those. LOL, looking at that pitiful little plant, I think I might have to nominate you as a patron saint of lost causes! :P :D

Nina

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Oxalis
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Re: Orchid Growing Tips?

Post by Oxalis » 02 Dec 2017, 17:24

Haha, awesome! Many thanks! I swear it's grown a little...! ;)
I <3 Stevie, my Russian tortoise!

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