Q. Will orchids, other than moth orchids, re-flower each year?
Many orchids can be induced to re-flower, but success will depend partly on the species. In nature, orchids experience a 10-degree temperature difference between day and night. This difference is important when trying to initiate flowering, particularly in the autumn and winter. Increasing the light that an orchid receives is another way to trigger flowering along with temperature. Good growing conditions include sufficient humidity, although the moth orchid (Phalaenopsis) does well in low humidity indoors. Finally, fertilizing your orchid (not overly) through the summer is helpful. It is best to use 1/4 strength of the recommended amount on the manufacturer's container. A balanced fertilizer such as 20-20-20 in powdered form can be used, but leach out any build up of chemical salts every 6 weeks or so by using water only. Excess salt buildup shows up as tip burn (dark leaf tips) on leaves. A natural fertilizer, such as compost tea, can be used instead for organic gardeners, without the problem of chemical salt buildup.
For tips on a variety of gardening topics, see our Plant Information Guides.
- Courtesy of NYBG Plant Information Service
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