Friday, November 21, 2008

Phalaenopsis Orchid

This type of orchids found in tropical parts of India, China, Malaysia, South-east Asia, Indonesia, the Philippines, New Guinea and Australia. With their long arching racemes of showy, widely-opening flowers they are amongst the most beautiful of all orchids and very popular with orchids collectors.

They are easy orchids to grow if given their basic requirements, however they also die quickly if they are unhappy with their surroundings. They are a shade lovers and will grow and flower well under conditions of low light. They love warm to hot conditions, with high humidity, gentle air movement. Phalaenopsis orchids have no capacity for water storage and hence must never be allowed to dry out. They are heavy feeders and respond well to liquid fertilizers.

The orchid in the picture was given to me last year in an attempt to rescue it - it was in very poor condition, all dried up with one small leaf all yellow and scorched and the original owner marked it out for the rubbish tip. The name label was lost so I don't know its variety.

I've repotted it into fresh compost and kept misting it with water until new leaves and roots started to grow and then flower spikes started showing up. Like all Phalaenopsis, its "an escape artist", trying hard to push its roots from its pot and may be at the later stage I will pot it up on bark or fern slab. At the moment, though, its growing very well and many more flowers are developing.

I've got what some friends call "intensive orchids care unit" - sometimes orchid plants come to me in a rather sorry conditions and I nurse them back to their formal glory. I enjoy the challenge discovering their beauty and have a few of them growing splendidly all over my garden.


  1. Well this Phal definitely looks happy in your care. Great flowers.

  2. Hi,
    Your blog reminds me of what I need to do for this type of orchid...feed and keep moist.
    Do you use a spray bottle?

  3. Hi Phillip
    yes, I misted it with spray bottle frequently until its started giving new growth and then just normal watering couple of times a week.

    Regards Klara

  4. I know it's heresy - but I don't really like orchids.

    This one is an exception.

    I think it is lovely.

    It reminds me of a child's windmill on a stick . . . or a huge bow . . . frivolous, fun, over-the-top and elegant all in one go.


  5. My phalaenopsis orchid has finished flowering. How do I look after it in the hope tht it will flower again next year?


  6. Hi Connie - the most important is to keep watering phalenopsis orchids after flowering and not letting orchid compost to become dry - they don't have any bulbs to retain moisture, so keeping them moist is important. I don't cut their flower spikes, I just live them and quite frequently new flowering growth will develop at lower part of the spike - then you can trim top dry part of the spike. These orchids also like to be ferilized frequently and I use good organic liquid feed - seaweed, fish, worm tea, etc...
    Happy growing!