What type of orchid will grow without natural light?
Phalaenopsis (Moth orchid) or Paphiopedilum (Lady slipper orchid) are two orchids that will grow well in low light or artifical light conditions. For best artificial lighting, use full spectrum fluorescent tubes with a reflector or attach light tubes to a shelf secured above the plants. The light source should be left on for 12-18 hours (you can set this to a timer) for optimum growth and flowering. Use 4-6-inch tubes (two side by side) and change them once a year.
Ventilation will be very important in this environment, so invest in a small fan to circulate the air around the plants. Do not place the plants on a heater. They need the natural drop in night temperatures during the fall to initiate bud formation.
For more detailed information, see the American Orchid Society's Fluorescent Light Gardening information page.
For tips on a variety of gardening topics, see our Plant Information Guides.
- Courtesy of NYBG Plant Information Service