Orchids shouldn’t be watered just like the other plants! It’s well known that in their natural environment these flowers grow on the bark of the trees, and not on the ground. That’s why the substrate in which orchids grow is made of bark, which accumulates water in small proportions and dries quickly. This thing misleads the orchid’s growers.
How often you should water the orchid?
Among orchids, the most popular species is – phalaenopsis. The more exotic species such as miltonia, cambria, dendrobium, cymbidium, paphiopedilum and others are not as popular as phalaenopsis. That’s why I will explain to you how to water phalaenopsis orchids.
First of all, we have to say that the frequency of watering for potted orchids depends on several factors, including air temperature, humidity, substrate composition, pot’s volume, plant life cycle, and season.
These are the signs indicating that the orchid needs to be watered:
- The roots of the plant have a light green or white hue. If you properly hydrate the orchid, the roots should be dark green.
- The walls of the pot must be dry. If they have even a small water drop, then you don’t need to wet the plant.
- The orchid pot is very easy.
- You can put a dry stick in the orchid pot very carefully and check the moisture in depth.
- If the plant is not hydrated for a long time, the orchid leaves turn yellow and wither.
Important! Several substrate fragments at the surface of the pot are not a reason for additional hydration.
Usually, in the summer, orchids should be watered once a week, and during winter in their rest time, when the plant is preparing for blooming, you need to hydrate it more often than twice a month.
For regular watering, don’t use tap water. The water must be stagnant, even if this is not enough. It will be ideal if you boil the water and cool it before watering the orchids, because the hard water may destroy your plant.
Mandatory! The water for hydrating orchids should be warm.
This method of hydrating the orchids is the most effective and most widespread. If you can, you can buy a special container that matches the size of the orchid pot. In fact, this is the same pot, but without drainage holes. Using a container of this kind will help you avoid overturning the orchid pot. In the absence of such a container, you can use any other vessel of the right size. The orchid pot should be dipped in this pot with water, until the water level is 10 cm below the edge of the pot. Usually, only 10-15 minutes are enough for the substrate to hydrate sufficiently. If water appears on the top layer, you must remove the pot from the water and let all the excess water flow out of it. During such irrigation, you can fertilize the orchid by dissolving the fertilizer in the water.
Watering with a sprinkler
If you use this method of hydrating the orchids you need to be careful. Water shouldn’t penetrate the leaves – at the base of the plant, because there may be a risk that the leaves will rot. Use a sprinkler and water the plant in several stages. Pour the water until it begins to drain through the drain holes. Pause for a few minutes and repeat the procedure 3-4 times.
This is the only scenario when you can actually water the orchid with tap water. Provided that this method of plant hydration is not regular, and it only applies sometimes. This watering method looks like pouring rain, and beside that the substrate and the roots of the plant will be hydrated, dust, possible pests and other dirt are removed from the orchid leaves. The warm water shower stimulates the growth of the leaves. The water should be warm, sometimes even hot at 104 degrees Fahrenheit. Continue to water the plant until the substrate is filled with water. Then let the water drain and put the orchid in a shady place for 30-40 minutes. After that, you must wipe the leaves with a dry paper towel. It’s very important to remove any drop of water between the leaves.
This watering method is not very popular, but it applies to orchids that grow with open roots without substrates. In this case, you should use a sprayer. With its help splash the roots of orchids fixed on a stable support.