Lady Slipper

(Paphiopedilum)
A great combination with moth orchids (Phalaenopsis), both liking similar conditions.
Relatively small plants produce large yellow, white, pink, green and burgundy flowers.

Light: North or east exposure, or under grow lights.

Temperature:Mottled leaf types (Maudiae or sequential), 60-65 degrees F nights and 75-85 degrees F days.
Green leaf types (Multi Flora or Bulldogs), 50-60 degrees F nights and 70-80 degrees F days.

Moisture: Water every 5-9 days, providing as much humidity as possible.

Nutrition: 20-10-20 every 2 weeks at half-strength.

Potting: Small bark or medium coconut mix, every year, in spring or fall.

Tips: Allow plants to produce many growths before dividing for better blooming. Remove spikes above foliage after all flowers have faded.Watch for mealybugs. Use 1 Tbl. of dish soap and 1 Tbl. of mineral oil in a quart of water and spray.

 

Zygopetalum

Predominately green and purple waxy flowers with an array of sweet fragrances. Blooms every 3-6 months on upright spikes of 3-9 flowers.

Light :North or east exposure or shaded west window.

Temperature: Nights of 55-65 degrees F and days of 70-80 degrees F.

Moisture: Water every 3-5  days to keep plants continually moist. Avoid getting water on the leaves, to prevent black spotting.

Nutrition: Fertilize with a 20-10-20 food during active growth, one time each week.

Potting: Use a medium bark mix, with good drainage. Repot every 1 or 2 years, when roots fill the pot. Plants will not bloom if roots are overcrowded.

Tips: This orchid should be included in a beginners collection.The new hybrids from Germany and Australia are easier to grow and bloom than the Zygopetalum species.

 

Dancing Doll

(Oncidium Alliance)
A unique group of orchids created to
bloom in a wide range of colors and shapes.

Included are the spiders, stars, popcorn orchids, many with haunting fragrances.

Light: East, west, or south window with protection from hot afternoon sun.

Temperature: Cool nights (50-65 degrees F) nights and warm days (70-85 degrees F) days. Summer outdoors in a shady location for best growth and blooming. Leave out late in fall to chill for spike initiation.

Moisture: Plants with thick fleshy roots require less watering than plants with thin roots and leaves. Water thoroughly every 5-7 days. Water more frequently when plants are producing new growth. Provide good humidity.

Nutrition: Feed weekly with 20-10-20 in spring and summer, 6-30-30 in fall and winter.

Potting: Re-pot every 1-2 years when media begins to breakdown or the roots all grow outside the pot. Remove old flower spikes at the base when flowers have faded.

Tips: Orchids with abbreviations like Bllra., Mtssa., Oda., Odbrs., Onc., or Vuyl., belong in this group.

 

Moth Orchid (Phalaenopsis)

The Moth Orchid (Phalaenopsis) is the easiest orchid to grow. Flowers are carried on a long spike with 3-12 blooms, that can last 4 months and bloom twice a year, with good culture.

Light: East sun is best or bright indirect light.Protect from hot summer sun.

Temperature: Room temperature, 65-85 degrees F. In the fall, chill at night for 3-4 weeks.A 15-20 degree change from day to night will induce spike initiation.Leave a window open at night or place the plant outdoors in a shady spot until there is evidence of a spike.

Moisture: In a bark mix water thoroughly every 5-7 days. In a moss media water when surface moss begins to turn light-colored or lift up the pot about every 10 – 20 days. Avoid getting water in the crown of the plant.

Humidity: Good humidity is he most important cultural need to make the flowers last longer and the orchid to thrive. Place the orchid near a water source like a sink, bathtub, or mist the plant daily.A humidity tray will also help.

Nutrition: Fertilize after each watering with 6-30-30 bloom formula in fall and winter.Switch to a high nitrogen fertilizer 20-10-20 in spring and summer.

Potting :Re pot in spring every other year or when roots all begin to grow outside the pot.

Tips: When the orchid has only 2 flowers left, break the spike below where the first flower was and the plant may grow a secondary spike and bloom again in 2-3 months.If the orchid is stressed it may produce a keiki (baby).