Although they may appear exotic, Phalaenopsis orchids are easy to care for and these days, easy to come by. Relatively inexpensive and available at your local grocery store, it’s apparent why Phalaenopsis orchids have become so popular.
Now, I’m a die-hard packrat who is reluctant to throw anything away — especially if it’s living — so I hang on to orchids after the blooms fade. I know that with a little TLC the plant will flower again and there is no such thing as having too many orchids.
Here’s how to care for Phalaenopsis orchids after they bloom.
- Cut Back the Orchid Flower Spike
- Basic Care for Orchids
- Trick Orchids into Bloom with Cool Temperatures
- Recognizing an Orchid Flower Spike
- Orchids After Blooming: Learn About Orchid Care After Blooms Drop
- Caring for Orchids after They Bloom
- How to Care for Orchids after Flowering
- How Long Do Orchid Blooms Typically Last?
- Cut the spike.
- What If I don’t cut the orchid spike?
- Post-bloom orchid care
Cut Back the Orchid Flower Spike
After the flowers drop from the orchid you have three choices: leave the flower spike (or stem) intact, cut it back to a node, or remove it entirely.
Remove the flower spike entirely by clipping it off at the base of the plant. This is definitely the route to take if the existing stem starts to turn brown or yellow. Withered stems won’t produce flowers. Removing the stem will direct the +plant’s energy toward root development, which makes for a healthier plant and increased chances for new bloom spikes.
Basic Care for Orchids
Place your Phalaenopsis orchid in an area that receives bright, indirect light with a daytime temperature of around 75°F and a night temperature of 65°F. (In your home works perfectly fine.) Water weekly and feed once a month with a liquid houseplant fertilizer diluted to half strength.
Trick Orchids into Bloom with Cool Temperatures
A trick you can use to try and force them into bloom is to move them to an area where the night temperature is slightly lower, about 55°F. Be sure the spot receives bright, indirect light during the day. Once a bloom spike appears, return your orchid to its normal setting.
Recognizing an Orchid Flower Spike
Phalaenopsis orchids typically flower once a year. To identify a new bloom spike, look for roots that are growing upwards with glossy green points, rather than round tips.
Once a bloom spike appears, increase feeding to every other week with a liquid houseplant fertilizer that has been diluted to half the recommended strength and support the stem with a stake as it grows.
Orchids After Blooming: Learn About Orchid Care After Blooms Drop
Orchids are the largest family of plants in the world. Much of their variety and beauty are reflected in the different species cultivated as houseplants. The flowers are unparalleled in beauty, form and delicacy and blooms last for quite some time. However, when they are spent, we are left wondering what to do with the plant now. Read on to learn how to care for orchids after flowering.
Caring for Orchids after They Bloom
You don’t have to be a collector to love orchids. Even grocery stores carry a selection of orchids as gift plants. Usually, these are the easy to grow Phalaenopsis orchids, which produce a vigorous stalk with numerous flowers. This variety of orchid blooms may last up to 2 months with good care but, eventually, all good things must come to an end.
When the flowers have all fallen from the stalk, it is time to consider how to keep the plant in good condition and possibly encourage a rebloom. Post bloom orchid care is the same for any species but relies on sterility to prevent disease contagions.
Strangely enough, most orchids come already blooming at purchase. So post bloom orchid care is really just good care for the plant at any time. Provide light but not direct sunlight, consistent moisture, air circulation and temperatures of 75 F. (23 C.) during the day and 65 degrees Fahrenheit (18 C.) at night.
Orchids thrive in cramped containers and are actually quite easy to grow if you keep the ambient conditions just right. Post bloom orchid care doesn’t differ from the care you give the plant year round. In fact, the only difference is in how you treat the spent flower stem. Orchid flower stems may still produce flowers if they are still green.
How to Care for Orchids after Flowering
A Phalaneopsis orchid that has finished flowering has the potential to produce another bloom or two. This is only if the stem is healthy and still green with no sign of rot. If the stem is brown or has begun to soften anywhere, cut it off with a sterile instrument to the base. This redirects the plant’s energy to the roots. Stems that are healthy on Phalaneopsis orchids after blooming can be cut back to the second or third node. These might actually produce a bloom from the growth node.
Removing only part of the stem is a part of orchid care after blooms drop recommended by collectors and growers. The American Orchid Society recommends using cinnamon powder or even melted wax to seal the cut and prevent infection on orchids after blooming.
Most other species of orchid need specialized conditions to form blooms and will not bloom from the spent flower stalk. Some even need a dormant period to form buds, such as Dendrobiums, which need 6 to 8 weeks with minimal water. Cattleya require cool nights with temperatures of 45 degrees Fahrenheit (7 C.) but warm days to form buds.
Let the soil dry slightly between waterings but never allow your orchid to become completely dried out. Caring for orchids after they bloom may mean repotting. Orchids like to be in cramped quarters and really only need their soil changed when it begins to break down. Use a good orchid mix that will have bark, coconut fiber, sphagnum moss and perlite. Be very gentle when repotting. Damage to roots can be fatal and marring the new flower shoots can prevent bloom.
How Long Do Orchid Blooms Typically Last?
They only come once a year and are enjoyed for as long as possible before they go dormant, but how long do orchid flowers actually last? The simple answer is that it depends on the variety. The complicated answer is that it also depends on the climate and care of the plant.
With minimal care, most orchids purchased at the grocery store or garden center will bloom for up to 6 weeks. This is typical for orchids that are kept primarily indoors. However, when given proper fertilizer and water, they may last up to 12 weeks and bloom again within the next year.
For the More Experienced Caregiver
For some gardeners who have invested much time and care with their orchids, flowers have been known to bloom for up to 4 months or even longer, depending on the season. Developing a regimented fertilizer routine as well as experimenting with the best location in your garden can ensure that orchid blooms will last longer than just a few weeks per year.
Also, by using a greenhouse to grow your orchids, it may actually allow them to flower year-round while new buds reproduce and germinate consistently.
When it comes to orchid plants, it’s usually the exquisite flowers and buds that simply takes us away. They indulge us with their beauty for weeks, sometimes months. But what should you do after the last flowers fall off from your orchid plant? Don’t throw it away just yet. Here’s how to properly take care of your orchids after they bloom.
Cut the spike.
A typical orchid plant can bloom again and again as long as it has healthy flower spikes to bear it. An orchid spike is the long stalky part of the plant where the leaves and the flowers are attached to. Learn more about different orchid parts here.
Check if the stem is still green and plump. On the contrary, if you see that your spike has become yellow, brown, and withered, this means it’s time to give it a trim. Because of this, you are saving your orchid plant from wasting energy and nutrients and instead encouraging it to focus on thriving and blooming faster eventually.
When cutting an orchid spike, use a clean and sharp blade, preferably sterilized by alcohol or hot water previously. Make sure it’s free of rust or you’ll risk infecting your orchid plant. Create a clean cut on the nearest node where the first flower appeared. A new shoot should surprise you within 8 to 12 weeks.
What If I don’t cut the orchid spike?
While other orchid lovers may argue that it will still bloom even if you leave the plant be, the American Orchid Society says that only Phalaenopsis orchids can bloom from the same inflorescence, albeit smaller and fewer. The reason is that blooming from the same spike twice can be exhausting and harmful for your orchid plant.
Post-bloom orchid care
Post-bloom orchid care shouldn’t be a big of a deal. It’s no different from how you should maintain and look after your orchid plant all the time. This includes:
- Water copiously whenever the potting material is dry.
- Give it ample amount of bright, indirect light.
- Fertilize weakly, weekly with a high-quality urea-free orchid fertilizer after watering sessions.
Some types of orchids will go through a dormancy period and may take time before they bloom again. Dendrobium orchids, Cymbidium orchids, Catasetums, Clowesias, Habenaria, and their hybrids reportedly go through a regular period of dormancy during winter or when temperatures start to drop. On the other hand, Phalaenopsis and Lady slipper orchids do not. They may just take a breather.
If this happens, it’s just normal. There’s no need to freak out. Give it time and some tender, loving care and you’ll see it will bloom again.
Phal Orchid Care After Flowering – Caring For Phalaenopsis Orchids Post Bloom
One of the easiest and most graceful orchids to develop is Phalaenopsis. The plant’s flowers last for weeks, giving lasting aesthetic in the home. Once flowers are finished off, Phal orchid care emphasizes on plant health. Good Phal orchid maintenance after blossoming establishes the plant for future blossoms and development of new leaves. Orchid maintenance after blooming is like when plants are in bloom. A few tricks might make the old flower spike blooming again for a second blush of very impressive flowers.
Providing Care for Phalaenopsis Orchids Post Blossoming
Phalaenopsis orchid care deals with an easier set of orders compared with a large number of other orchids, which is likely why this plant is one of the widely grown. Most Phals can be made to bloom from the old flower spike then the stem can be get rid of. A few of species will only flower off the old stems, which should not be cut off. The most happening often moth orchids are the sort which require the old stem to be get rid of after a secondary flowers. Only try to bloom again the plants which are strong and healthy.
Phals can produce many flowers per stalk. Once the final flower is fading away, you can remove the stalk back to a few inches from the soil with a not dirty, sharp knife. This is not only makes the appearance of the plant better but stop it from wasting energy in bringing a non-producing stalk alive.
Alternatively, you can try to keep the old stem to flower anew. Cut the stalk back to a healthy node. This is the first node under the lowest flower on the spike. You can know the nodes by the scar shaped like a triangle on the stalk. Flowering again will only happen on the green flower spikes . If the spike has gotten yellow to brown, cut it to 2 inches from the soil and continue taking care normal Phalaenopsis orchid.
Tricking Your Phal into blooming again
Orchids need very particular conditions to flower, most of which are not got in the home interior. Move it to a part of a house where temperatures are 55 degrees Fahrenheit (13 C.) but the plant gets sunny, not direct sunlight during the day, if you need to try to make the plant to flower, Once you notice a flower spike starting to exist, put the plant back to its warmer place.
Flower spikes will have pointed tips in contrast to new leafing shoots, which are a little curved. Young flowering spikes will gain a benefit from feeding every other week with a pot plant fertilizer adulterated by half. Fertilizing fortnightly is not an essential part of orchid protection after flowering. If forcing is effective, you can anticipate flowers in 8 to 12 weeks.
Phal Orchid Maintenance
Phal orchid care after flowering is mainly cut to make watering procedures right and giving sufficient light and temperatures. Once flowering is finished and the spike has been gotten rid of, the plant will concentrate on developing new leaves and roots.
Watering the plant once per week with 3 ice cubes. This provides the sufficient amount of water the plant required, delivered at a slower rate therefore the roots can uptake the moisture.
Keeping the plant in a north or east facing window. This relaxing period while the plant is not blooming is also the suitable time to repot. Choosing a good orchid combination for a delighted Phalaenopsis. At the time of repotting, find out any diseased roots and cut these out with a completely clean razor blade.
That is fairly much, when taking care for Phalaenopsis orchids after bloom. The relaxing period and better care will help make sure the next season’s attractive foliage.