Great orchid care involves making sure your orchid is receiving the right amounts of light and humidity. You also want to make sure that the temperature is right in the area where you keep your plant. While watering your orchid is important, too much water can be a problem. It's also important to be sure you don't forget to water your orchid, which can be easy since it doesn't require much water.
With Just Add Ice Orchids, you only need to add three ice cubes a week to your orchid's pot. This will keep it looking beautiful and healthy. But, what if you're used to watering your plants more often and you forget?
Weekly Orchid Care Reminders
We understand that you're busy. And everyone can use a reminder now and then. By signing up for our Free Orchid Care Watering Reminders, you'll receive reminders to water your orchid in the way that suits you the best. We can send you email reminders, or you can get them sent right to your phone. Our weekly text message reminders are a great way to be sure that your orchid always receives the water it needs.
Desktop Watering Reminder Calendars
Another option we provide to help remind you when to water your orchid plant is our desktop calendars. You get to choose your watering day and then simply download the calendar to use as your desktop background. Then every time you work on your computer, you will not only enjoy a beautiful orchid image, but also be reminded when to water!
Orchid plants are so beautiful and they will make a lovely addition to any home or workspace. Making sure they receive just the right amount of water will ensure that they stay beautiful and healthy for a long time.
A healthy Phalaenopsis orchid will delight you by displaying its colorful leaves, flowers and buds. But like any plant, this orchid goes through a life cycle that includes shedding old blooms and growing new ones.
If you want to encourage your orchid to stay in bloom or grow new buds, a few basic orchid tips should help you get there.
As Just Add Ice Orchids recommends, just three ice cubes a week should keep your plant sufficiently hydrated throughout the blooming process. Watch your pots for signs of overwatering (damp or standing water on the potting material) or dehydration (drying out of the leaves) and adjust accordingly. However, when fertilizing, follow the direction below …
Using fertilizer while your orchid is already in flower will help it grow new buds. Mix a balanced houseplant fertilizer with water at half the recommended strength – and don’t add ice! The week you fertilize, skip the three ice cubes and instead place the plant in the sink with the drainage holes exposed. Water with the fertilizer solution until you see it starting to run out of the bottom of the pot.
Though a Phalaenopsis normally does best in warmer temperatures, a cooler environment can help trigger flowering. Find an area in your home or office where the temperature stays around 55 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep your pot there for about a month.
Other Orchid Tips
- Just Add Ice Orchids do best in indirect sunlight. While promoting new bud growth, keep direct sunlight out of the plant’s path.
- Watch for a new spike growing from your pot – the root grows upward and the tip resembles the shape of a mitten.
- Once the spike starts growing, support it with a stake. Avoid re-orienting your pots while the stake and buds grow – keeping them in a consistent position will aid the plant in growing a beautiful, arching display.
Learn More! Visit Just Add Ice Orchids to see and hear from the growing experts in our Orchid Care Videos.
Many well-meaning orchid lovers end up accidentally killing their plants with too much water. Your large orchid might seem like it needs more water, however it actually only needs a little bit of water each week to sustain itself and remain the beautiful plant that you've grown to love. Watering your orchid is important because it transfers the nutrients from the soil into the plant itself. However, in order to know exactly how much water it needs, it's important to understand the basics of orchid care. You should also keep a close eye on your plant to be sure it's not getting too much water.
The Results of Excess Moisture
Excess moisture can cause root rot in your orchid. When it gets too much water, this can cause the carbon dioxide to accumulate in the potting soil. The result is an impeded flow of oxygen to the root hairs of your orchid. It's hard to tell if your plant is getting too much water unless you watch it closely and you know what to look for.
How Much Water Does Your Orchid Really Need?
Is it true that your orchid only needs 1/4 cup of water every two weeks to survive? Just Add Ice Orchids make orchid care simple because they only need 3 ice cubes a week. It might help your peace of mind to try a simple test to be sure your orchid is getting enough water. Periodically, place a toothpick in the soil of your orchid. If it comes out clean, the orchid has enough water. If it doesn't, that means the plant has too much.
We make orchid care straight forward and simple. By following these instructions, your Just Add Ice Orchid can remain a beautiful part of your home for a long time.
Spikes, blooms, leaves… the many parts of a Phalaenopsis orchid can give you a good indication of the plants overall health. Proper orchid care also focuses on a part of the plant that needs special attention: the bud.
The bud is the most sensitive part of the plant – a fact well known by the growers at Just Add Ice Orchids as they prepare their plants for delivery to one of the many stores that sell these colorful flowers. The way temperature, humidity and light levels change in transit can cause a trauma to the orchid and make it abort the buds.
Handle with Care
Just Add Ice takes steps to keep their buds thriving during transport from its main greenhouses at Green Circle Growers, one of the largest greenhouse operations in the Midwest, to retail centers across the United States. The growers choose only the healthiest plants, then pack and ship them carefully prior to delivery.
- The plants are potted, then put into a protective sleeve
- The sleeves go into trays to keep them upright in the box
- The trays are placed in a box with heat packs to keep a constant temperature throughout transportation
Your Part in Orchid Care
Once you get your Phalaenopsis home, keep an eye on the buds as you find the ideal setting for your pot. A warm, more humid environment – free of direct sunlight or draft – will help your buds retain optimum health and bloom into flowers that will delight you for a long time to come.
Find more orchid care tips by checking out some of our other blog posts.
Virtually every orchid fan has had the experience of looking in on their favorite plant one morning only to discover – oh no! – tiny buds or entire blooms dropped to the bottom of the planter, dead before their time.
The causes of premature bud or bloom loss (called bud blast) can range from a sudden change in room temperature to over-watering.
Your colorful, hardy Phalaenopsis plants need not be a victim of early bud loss when you use orchid tips from Just Add Ice Orchids to keep them in optimum health:
- Check the temperature. Orchids thrive best in a warmer, humid environment (65 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit). Make sure your plants are in a consistently warm area of your home or office to see if this makes a positive difference.
- Attend to the water. Orchids by nature do not require large amounts of hydration. Just Add Ice Orchids only need three ice cubes added to the pot each week. Don’t let the roots sit in excess water – that’s a sure way to kill off buds before they have a chance to bloom.
- Remove the fruit bowl. That innocent-looking bowl of apples, bananas or oranges near your plants may be the culprit. Ripening fruit, burning candles and incense all emit ethylene gas that can cause bud blast.
If the temperature, humidity, water and ethylene all appear to be in order and your plants are still shedding buds prematurely, consider repotting the orchid. Also, check for pests that may be present.
You can always turn to our other blogs on orchid care for more useful information and tips.
For those that have always wanted to buy a Phalaenopsis orchid you might think that the orchid is a delicate flower that requires special care and techniques in order to make it grow and thrive in a home or office setting. Looking at the orchid can be deceiving because it does indeed look delicate, but it is quite hardy in comparison to many other types of flowers that can be found in the United States.
When considering to buy a Phalaenopsis orchid plant, it is important to buy a plant that is green and healthy looking. The flowers on the plant should look healthy and vibrant and it is not uncommon for additional buds to be present on the plant that you are purchasing. The green stems on the plant should be strong and healthy looking with no points of discoloration.
Conduct a Quick Check
Always be sure to check for root rot before purchasing a Phalaenopsis orchid. Take a sniff of the plant as well. Any foul smells are an indication that rotting has occurred and another plant should be chosen. The leaves on a Phalaenopsis orchid plant will also give you important information. Spots on the leaves could mean that the plant has a virus or that it has been blistered in the sun.
Leaves that have yellow spots could mean that the plant is suffering from an infestation of mealy bugs or spider mites. Look for spider mites on the undersides of the leaves. These occur if the leaves are subjected to overly dry conditions. In severe cases, the entire leaf may turn yellow by spider mites.
Keeping your eyes out for pests, smells, spots and viruses will help get you on your way to purchasing a healthy Phalaenopsis orchid.
If you have discovered other issues with your orchid plant, download our free Orchid 911 guide for answers and helpful tips.
If someone you love is having a baby girl, you’re probably on the lookout for a meaningful, pink-themed gift. Want to wow the mother-to-be with a one-of-a-kind present? Take a tip from the Ancient Greeks: get her an orchid!
Here’s why: In Ancient Greece, it was believed that orchids had the power to determine a baby’s gender. Fathers would eat a large tuber if a male child was desired or mothers would eat a smaller tuber in hopes of a daughter. Pink orchids, in particular, were associated with affection.
More Than the Greeks
It wasn’t just the Ancient Greeks that looked to orchids as a symbol and sign of fertility. The Chinese believed orchids encouraged couples in producing more than one offspring. If you go with the gift of orchids, you might consider attaching a note that explains the details of the either culture’s beliefs; wishing the expectant parents well in building their family!
Check out other uses and symbol of the orchid in a related article.
It is necessary to cut away certain parts of your Phalaenopsis orchid if you want to trigger reblooming, propagate the plant, or get rid of diseases. Before you cut your orchid, you have to make sure that the scissors or pruners that you are using are perfectly clean, because dirty tools can spread diseases.
Here are instructions on how to disinfect orchid cutting tools:
Use hot water and soap to wash your orchid cutting tools. Then, rinse them properly and wipe them dry with a clean paper towel.
Next, light an alcohol lamp or gas stove, and place the blades of your cutting tools in the flame for a few seconds. After that, put the tools on a paper towel and let them cool. You can proceed to trim your orchid after the tools have cooled. If the blades of your cutting tools have special coatings, you should not use this method to disinfect them, because the heat may cause damage to the coatings.
If you do not want to disinfect your cutting tools with an open flame, you can use a trisodium phosphate solution (TSP) instead. Fill a container that is tall enough to cover the entire lengths of the blades with warm water. Pour TSP into the water and stir. Keep pouring and stirring until the solution is completely saturated. Then, dip the tools into the solution and put them on a paper towel to dry. Instead of the TSP and water solution, you can also use a solution of one part chlorine bleach and nine parts water.
Alternatively, you can disinfect your cutting tools with a rubbing alcohol. Soak a cotton ball or paper towel in rubbing alcohol and wipe the blades of the tools with it. Then, rinse the tools with clean water.
Once your tools are properly sterilized, you can begin pruning your Phalaenopsis orchids.
Orchids are the most widely grown houseplants in the United States today, but they were far less popular 25 years ago. The orchid world experienced many changes over the past quarter century before orchid-growing reached its present level of popularity.
From Corsage Flowers to Potted Plants
Orchid corsages were no longer fashionable in the 1980s, but cattleyas orchids, which were commonly used in corsages, became more sought after as potted plants. Their large beautiful petals and sweet fragrance made them a popular choice among orchid growers. Since 1929, every first lady of the US has a cattleya named after her.
Mass-Production of Orchids
In the late 1980s, growing orchids was a hobby that was mostly practiced by people who were members of local orchid societies. The breeding of Phalaenopsis orchids was still in its infancy. Later on, an orchid growing company in North Carolina called Breckenridge Orchids started using peat moss for the production of Phalaenopsis orchids, which revolutionized the orchid growing industry. The company won hundreds of awards from the American Orchid Society for the numerous hybrids it created.
Orchid Boarding and Delivery
Demand for orchid boarding service also rose significantly over the past 25 years. This service enables orchid owners to leave their plants in the care of professional growers until they bloom again. Growers began offering orchid boarding service in many cities, and some of them have thousands of boarded orchid plants in their greenhouses. The delivery of orchid plants by mail also became more common. This was made possible by better packing techniques and faster delivery times.
The US Department of Agriculture estimated that the total number of orchid plants produced in 2010 was over 21 million. Phalaenopsis orchids are presently the most widely produced orchids, and they are widely available in grocery stores.
If you want to purchase high-quality Phalaenopsis orchids, use our store locator to find a Just Add Ice Orchids store near you.
Thorough examination of ancient artifacts revealed that the ancient Romans were big fans of orchids. Orchids had been widely depicted in the public art of ancient Rome for many centuries, and they started losing popularity with the emergence of Christianity, probably because they were seen as a symbol of sexuality.
Ancient Italian Artifacts
A botanist from the University of Rome, Giulia Caneva, worked with a few graduate students to identify plants that were depicted in ancient Italian artifacts. She assembled a database of Italian paintings, stone carvings, and textiles that had representations of plants in them, and she began to match the depicted plants with real plants that were found in the region. She managed to identify about 100 Italian orchid species in the artifacts, and some of the depictions date back much further than previously thought.
Back to the Beginning
Scholars had previously spotted reproductions of orchids in Italian paintings from the 15th century, but Caneva and her team found that orchids were depicted in stone carvings that date back to 46 B.C., when the Temple of Venus Genetrix was established by Julius Caesar. Additionally, there are depictions of three or more orchids on the Ara Pacis, a stone altar that was commissioned by Augustus in 9 B.C. Orchids were probably selected to express the altar’s theme of fertility, civic rebirth, and prosperity after conflict.
According to Caneva, the popularity of orchids as a subject in Roman public art began to decline with the rise of Christianity in the 3rd and 4th centuries. However, orchids became widely featured in art again during the Renaissance.
Interested in learning more about the history of orchids? Check out another related blog post, here.