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Old 11-02-2011, 09:32 PM   #11
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I've been trying to give away 4 orchid plants. Supposedly I have several takers, but haven't been able to to coordinate with them. It won't be a big loss, really; I like having flowers in my house, and I bought them here and there at a good price and got months of flowers from them. But it kills me to toss them out when I have friends who have green houses and such. In my case, every window with the perfect amount of sunlight (and I have several) also has baseboard heating underneath. Very hard to keep an appropriate amount of moisture for them without something like daily misting. I'm not good at that degree of dedication to a plant (hey, husband and doggie need to remind me to feed and water! (Just joking)).
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Old 11-02-2011, 09:45 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Claire
I've been trying to give away 4 orchid plants. Supposedly I have several takers, but haven't been able to to coordinate with them. It won't be a big loss, really; I like having flowers in my house, and I bought them here and there at a good price and got months of flowers from them. But it kills me to toss them out when I have friends who have green houses and such. In my case, every window with the perfect amount of sunlight (and I have several) also has baseboard heating underneath. Very hard to keep an appropriate amount of moisture for them without something like daily misting. I'm not good at that degree of dedication to a plant (hey, husband and doggie need to remind me to feed and water! (Just joking)).
Would a pebble tray work, Claire? Just be sure they aren't sitting in the water.
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Old 11-03-2011, 06:05 PM   #13
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Probably would work ... I guess a part of it is that I've never gotten an orchid to bloom a second time in totally ideal circumstances (really, Hawaii and Florida) and really don't want to give up the space to the plants. But if no one claims them soon, I'll probably do that; if nothing else the pebble tray will add moisture to the air over the winter.
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Old 11-03-2011, 06:15 PM   #14
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I understand. Most orchids aren't terribly attractive when not in bloom. What kind are they?

When I was in my "orchid phase" I had many repeat bloomers, even here in Iowa. I've cut way back, and those I have left still bloom once or twice a year. Mostly phals and paphs ( slipper orchids).
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Old 11-03-2011, 06:30 PM   #15
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Actually, I don't know! Each is different. I used to know more about orchids (i.e., when I lived in Hawaii), but ... information I don't need, gone forever! One I bought about 4 years ago! It has miniscule blossoms of dark yellow with brownish/orange speckles, many, many of them. When I'd just about killed it, I gave it to a friend with a greenhouse. She kept it for 2 years, and returned it when it bloomed again. So I got two lovely seasons from it over the years. It bloomed in the fall (both times) and the colors were so perfect for autumn! The others are slightly larger blooms, in varying shades of purple -- from white with pale lavender to a dark purple. The autumn toned one has blossoms the size of a woman's pinky finger fingerprint, the latter are larger bloom, more the size of the end of a man's thumb. The autumn has dozens of blossoms, last time on two spikes, the purples have about 10-15 each. When I buy them, it is for a pleasing winter gift to myself, a reminder of some lovely years of my life. As opposed to cut flowers, They've lasted for months. As a matter of fact, there is still one blossom on left on one plant and I bought it this past winter!
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Old 11-03-2011, 07:46 PM   #16
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Sounds like you're doing OK! At the risk of sounding pedantic, there are more orchid varieties, species and hybrids, than any other flower in the world! So any orchid is not just an "orchid". Not sure which ones you have!

The main difference is potting medium, there are epiphytes (roots in air or bark, moss, etc., ) and terrestrials. Most medium is just a support for the plant.
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:27 AM   #17
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There used to be a huge orchid place near the volcano on the Big Island. All that information in my tiny brain!

While I've got you here, do you trim the stalk (I'm sure there's a better word for it) down to the bottom when it stops blooming? Guess if I'm keeping them over the winter, I might as well do it right.

Mine were all in a bark type medium. I had to re-pot the amber one this year (it literally looked to be climbing out of the pot) and the medium I bought was more soil-like than I'd seen before, but it still seems very healthy.

Ever seen orchids in nature? That was neat.
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Old 11-04-2011, 12:55 PM   #18
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Claire, I've had reblooms by just trimming the flower stalk to just above the next "node" or bump if it's green. If it's all brown and dried out, cut it off.

Orchids in the wild are gorgeous. We've been to Maui and Kauai a number of times, also see them in Mexico. We have Showy Orchis growing wild under our pine grove. I was so excited when I discovered them! They don't make good houseplants as conditions have to be perfect, and they're quite rare. Lady Slippers grow wild around here too, but I haven't seen any yet. A bunch were planted at a preserve near here, and apparently the deer loved them.
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Old 11-05-2011, 06:49 AM   #19
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Hmmm. Maybe that's my problem. I'm trimming the stalks too close to the base. Since I haven't trimmed these at all, I'll do it above the nodes and hope for better. Better yet, maybe a friend will come along and take them off my hands!
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