Five ‘little care’ tips to make orchids ‘bloom for years to come’

Phalaenopsis, or moth orchids, are known for their exotic long-lasting flowers that come in a variety of colors including pink and white. They are easy to care for and grow well in centrally heated rooms, ideal for the festive period. The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) said: “Their delicate and unusual beauty has captivated us for centuries, and now they are cheaper than ever.

“But don’t throw it away after flowering, with a little care it can bloom for years to come.”

To help orchids bloom or re-bloom next season, the RHS shares five top tips for houseplant owners to follow for orchid care.

1. Flower buds fall off when exposed

Orchids can drop their flower buds when exposed to extreme temperatures. This is because they do not like cold weather and need to be kept above 16C at all times to help them grow.

This means that Britons should avoid buying orchids from outdoor market stalls or supermarkets where they are located close to open doors.

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Fortunately for orchid owners, this makes it easy to see if there is a problem with the plant such as over- or under-watering.

The RHS states that if an orchid has grey, shriveled roots, it means the plant is too dry and needs water.

However, orchids are susceptible to root rot so owners must take extreme care to ensure they do not over-water their plant.

If this houseplant is kept in a dry room such as a bedroom, it may be worth misting the orchid every day to increase its humidity levels. They can also be placed on or near a tray of wet pebbles to help with humidity.

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3. Avoid tap water

Like many houseplants, tap water contains chlorine which can harm the plant, resulting in houseplant death.

The RHS said: “Use rainwater or boiled water to mist and water, they don’t appreciate the chlorine in fresh tap water. Also, make sure the water is at room temperature.”

Rain or distilled water is more suitable for all houseplants as it can help contribute to the nutrition of the plant.

It is also best to make sure it is room temperature when watering them as very cold water can shock them.

4. Be careful while misting

When misting an orchid, it is extremely important not to splash the flowers with water. The RHS explained how this can cause spots to appear on the petals which can be quite unsightly.

Instead, houseplant owners must pay attention to the roots and soil to keep them healthy. It is recommended to do this job every two to three days using lukewarm water.

5. What to do when the orchid has finished flowering

The RHS explained: “When they have finished flowering, cut the flower spike back to the highest node, and they may well bloom again.”

Houseplant owners should also continue to care for their orchids even when they are dormant, including feeding them.

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