Archive for December, 2010

January Orchid Shows

Friday, December 31st, 2010

Welcome the new year with orchids! The globally televised Tournament of Roses Parade features plenty of Phals, Cymbidiums, Dendrobiums, and Vandas alongside the countless roses. For the rest of the month, orchid shows provide opportunities to celebrate around the planet. January 1 Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade, Pasadena, California, 8 AM PST (check local TV […]

Winter Challenges

Monday, December 27th, 2010

Growing orchids in cold northern climates brings extra challenges in winter. First, cold temps mean that heaters run frequently, drying the air in the process. Low humidity can cause lots of problems for orchids, such as wilting blooms, pests, and disease. Tried-and-true methods to raise humidity include: Grouping plants together Placing orchids in humid areas […]

Waiting for the Sun

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

The solstice seems a little like an afterthought this year. Winter’s early arrival across the northern half of the planet has kept record cold temps and snowfalls in the news. Here in SF, our winter rainy season started in earnest last month. Although the Phals and Cymbidiums are starting to grow flower spikes, not much […]

Gift Plants

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Blooming orchids make wonderful holiday gifts, and smart shoppers start by checking out these buying tips. Even after you’ve picked the right orchid, however, you may have a problem. Some people are terrified of orchids. I’ve seen an orchid gift provoke such fear in a friend’s eyes that it made me wonder if he would […]

How to Grow Fresh Air

Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

I’ve always known that orchids are good for me, and now I have proof in How to Grow Fresh Air: 50 House Plants that Purify Your Home or Office by Dr. B.C. Wolverton. Common orchid varieties like Phals and Dendrobiums are among the top houseplants to filter airborne toxins. Wolverton details the best plants to […]

Australian Orchid Returns

Friday, December 10th, 2010

Australian conservationists have had notable success lately, and now they’ve rediscovered an extinct orchid species. The Robust Greenhood Orchid, Pterostylis valida, is a long-lost cousin of the Greenhood that I grow. Believed extinct since 1941, it’s been rediscovered in an area outside of Melbourne. It’s no coincidence that the new-found plants are growing on land […]


Monday, December 6th, 2010

If long Latin orchid names aren’t your thing, you’ll be happy to know that Odontoglossums are nicknamed Odonts (which rhymes with “no fonts.”) The Odont family includes over 100 species and countless human-made hybrids. Many varieties have long-lasting flowers. I’ve had this first one for years, and its brilliants pinks and yellows always take my […]

December Orchid Events

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

Orchid life continues in December, even though there are only a few shows. I’ve listed some orchid society holiday celebrations for those who really need a fix. Many include orchid sales or auctions to help with your holiday gift needs. December 4 Acadian Orchid Society Workshop, Crowne Plaza Hotel, 1801 W. Pinhook Rd., Lafayette, Louisiana […]