Orchids are spectacular plants with exotic flowers. Phalaenopsis orchids, also known as the moth orchid, are the easiest to grow and are available in a wide variety of colors and sizes. They bloom for several weeks at a time, are not finicky about indoor temperatures and do not require really bright light.
The best surprise is that once phalaenopsis orchids have finished blooming, almost anyone can get them to bloom again!
How to Encourage Re-blooming:
Once your orchid has finished blooming, cut back the stem to where the first flower bloomed. (Picture A shows an orchid that has finished blooming) When you cut the stem, make the cut between where the last flower bloomed and the first node below that. (Picture B shows what a node looks like. It is the bump on the stem right below the budding stem.)
Place the orchid on a windowsill by a north or east facing window. The change in temperature at night by a window will make the orchid want to bloom. They need a 15-20 degree temperature drop at night.
If the stem starts to brown up past the first good node then you will have to cut the stem again between the next 2 nodes. It’s a game you play trying to get the stem to re-flower.
Fertilize your orchid with a specialized orchid fertilizer every 2 weeks until you see a flower stem starting to protrude from the node.
Once you see the plant starting to get a flower stem, stop fertilizing! Giving an orchid fertilizer at this time will not only make the plant flower sooner but will also make the flowers go through their life cycle faster and die sooner. Only fertilize when the plant is not blooming.
After your orchid begins to bloom, you can move it anywhere you would like in your house. It only needs to be by the window when it is trying to bloom. If you follow these simple steps, you too will have a beautiful flowering orchid for most of the year!
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