Welcome to the Growing Orchids review, our guide to nurturing these beautiful plants for budding home gardeners.
We’re aiming to put together an exciting and informative guide as a reference to looking after the orchid, which you can revisit over and over at your leisure to get the guidance you need.
Let’s start by addressing some common questions.
When you first get into gardening, orchids are a tough place to start compared to growing some other plants. You’ll soon realise that the flowers can take a long time to appear, which commonly makes new starters assume they’re doing something wrong. What’s more, some varieties of orchid can require specialized cutting techniques, but getting these wrong can potentially prove fatal to your plant.
It’s no great surprise, then, to learn that this can put people off persevering beyond a half hearted first attempt.
So, how do you know what the correct way is to cut your plant? Will orchids grow back if you get it wrong? Let’s go into a little more detail next.
The idea behind cutting is that so are trying to maximize the flowering of the plant, after all, that’s the visual appeal that everyone notices first. While you can certainly damage the plant with careless or uneducated cutting, you can also enhance the life of your plant by getting it right. That means that we really ought to consider the question the other way around – if I learn to cut the orchid back in the correct manner and at the right time, will it grow back. The answer now is clearly yes!
Generally speaking, the time to trim back the plant occurs just after the last of the season’s flowers has fallen away. The reason for this timing is it makes it far less likely that you’ll cause damage – you have less to work with and more margin of error.
The method of cutting you choose will be determined by the species you are dealing with – the two types are known as partial and complete cutting, and you can learn which is appropriate for your plant by typing the name and ‘cutting’ into a search engine. While there are some plants that can use either method, orchids do tend to be very delicate, so it is important to do your research to understand not only which is which, but also what your plant requires.
Flowering is something that you will have little control over. It can seem almost arbitrary in terms of how long you have to wait between flowers. You will likely find that the better care you take of your plant, the more predictably and extensively they will bloom. They do loosely follow seasons, but if you’re a keen gardener you might recognize that they’re less predictable that some other types of plant. A common error made by newbies to orchid gardening is watering them too much – this will do little to help them flower, and may cause damage, even death to your plant.
One final point to remember, is that a flowering plant is a healthy plant, so at the time the last flower falls, the orchid is healthy. Treat it carefully, don’t be too hasty in attempting to get it to flower, and your reward will come in time.