Indoor orchid gardening will bring some of the most attractive flowers into your home or office. Orchids are not the simplest of plants to grow, but by learning and following the basics, and keeping a close eye on your orchids, you should be well on your way to some lovely indoor beauties.
The orchid family is one of the largest groups of flowering plants. There are over 20,000 species! They’re found throughout the world and survive in all sorts of habitats. Orchids are extremely attractive and there are so many varieties that you will never grow tired!
Humidity is a key factor in growing orchids. By far most orchids are from the tropics and like a very humid environment during the day and to be kept dry during the night.
Use a spray bottle to mist the leaves once a day to simulate a humid environment. If you live in a very dry part of the world, look at getting a humidifier to increase the humidity in the room.
Another cheaper way to achieve this is to get a waterproof tray, add some stones to it and keep it topped up with water. Put this under the orchid pot so that the water can evaporate and increase the humidity around the orchid.
Most orchids prefer bright, filtered light. You need to get the light right — too much light may burn the plant. Too little light will prevent the flowers from blooming.
Although orchids like humidity, you should be careful not to overwater them. Like their tropical habitats, they like alternating periods of dryness and wet soil (like a tropical drenching rain).
Use special orchid potting soil. This is available at most good garden stores that sell orchid supplies. In nature, many orchids grow on tree trunks and favour a dry, well aired growing medium. While at the store, get yourself some specially formulated orchid fertilizer and use it around once a month or as directed on the label.
It’s also a good idea to report your orchids every two years after they have flowered.
Most orchids do well at normal indoor temperatures. Some orchids require fluctuations in temperature between night and day to promote blooming. The specific temperature requirements differ amongst species, so Google your orchid’s specific requirements.
Types of Orchid Suitable for Indoors
- Moth orchid (Phalaenopsis)
- Lady’s slipper (Paphiopedilum)
- Boat orchids (Cymbidiums)
By following this simple advice, you can get started with indoor orchid gardening. Read up about any special requirements of the particular orchids you’re growing and you’ll be sure to have a lot of success!