Orchids have been one of the most popular potted plant gifts for many years. They are also used in various flower arrangements but, for many, there is nothing that compares to allure of the plant itself. It’s not just the flowers that are beautiful, but the leaves and tall stems too. Even the root system is fascinating when you consider that these plants do not require actual soil! When you buy or receive a cymbidium orchid, it’s important to understand their needs. By providing these flowering plants with what they need, you will get that much more out of them.
Inspect the plant
Take the time to inspect your cymbidium orchid thoroughly before you buy it. Make sure that the plant is in perfect health and that there are no signs of damage or disease. Once you have bought the plant, make sure that you transport it with the utmost care. Ideally, have somebody hold the plant while you drive. Alternatively, you can secure it in a box on the floor of your car. Avoid direct sunlight, wind, heat, and anything that could damage the plant. If you plan on ordering the plant from your online florist, make sure that they offer some kind of quality guarantee. When the plant arrives, take a moment to inspect it. If you notice anything wrong with it, take pictures and contact your florist immediately.
Remove the wrapper
When you have the plant at home, it’s time to remove any packaging or wrapping. Place the pot on a drip tray and avoid watering for the first 10 days. The soil should be quite moist but you don’t want to overwater. The pot should have ample holes in the bottom to allow water to drain away. Orchids prefer humidity to soggy soil so keep this in mind. You might like to set the pot on a tray of pebbles. This will help create a humid environment around the plant. Your orchid will only need to be watered every 7 to 10 days. Keep an eye on the soil and don’t let it dry out completely but don’t water too often either. A spray bottle with fresh water is also great for instant humidity.
Cymbidium orchids like morning and late afternoon sun. They don’t do well if they are exposed to midday sun since it’s too harsh. If the leaves are light green, the plant is getting enough sunlight. If the leaves are darker, they need more sun. If you display your orchid in an area that receives sun throughout the day, you can simply close the curtains closest to the plant during the hottest hours of the day.
A nutritious diet
From February to July, your cymbidium orchid will enjoy some fertilizer with high nitrogen. From August to January, however, you should use fertilizers with low nitrogen. There are fertilizers specifically designed for orchids so feel free to ask an expert at your local plant nursery. Fertilizer should only be added to the soil once a month and the instructions should be followed very closely for best results. Too much fertilizer will be harmful to the plant and too little will not have much effect at all.
Keep out of the cold
Orchids don’t like the cold so you should make sure that they are not placed in an area that is not properly heated in winter. During the summer months, heat is not a concern but in winter, it’s important to make sure that they are not exposed to the cold winter air.
Every so often, you will need to consider planting your orchid in a new pot. This is usually needed every two or three years and it should be done between February and June. When you place the plant in a new pot, you should make sure that you use orchid potting soil and follow your usual care and watering schedule.