Archive for the 'Growing' Category

Big, Beautiful Vanda Orchids

Sunday, August 26th, 2018

Vandas are orchid royalty. These popular tropical beauties have big, round, colorful, long-lasting flowers. Called strap-leaf Vandas, they are best known in the tropics. In places like Hawaii, it’s easy for growers to accommodate these large plants with long roots and high light needs by tying them onto a tree. Outside the tropics, they’re tougher […]

Mother’s Day Orchid Care

Sunday, May 13th, 2018

Mother’s Day orchids are even better when you know that most are easy to care for. With a few orchid basics, you can enjoy their flowers for weeks, or even months. Watering – Remove wrapping paper or decorative containers, at least temporarily, if they block the pot’s drainage holes. Drench the plant with room-temperature water, […]

How To Say Coelogyne

Tuesday, April 10th, 2018

Fortunately, Coelogyne orchids are easier to grow than they are to pronounce. This glorious genus of orchids originates in Southeast Asia, in a large area stretching from India and China to Indonesia, New Guinea, the Philippines, and Fiji. Many varieties have tumbling cascades of fragrant blooms. Their brilliantly-colored flower lips often feature weird ridges and […]

Valentine Orchid Care

Tuesday, February 13th, 2018

Now that you have a beautiful Valentine orchid, what do you do with it? Don’t panic! Most orchids don’t deserve their difficult reputations. A few care tips can help you keep your orchid happy. Identify your orchid – Moth Orchids, like the three in the row of photos above, are the most popular. Lady Slippers […]

Great Website for Orchid Species

Saturday, October 28th, 2017

Everyone interested in orchid species should know about the Internet Orchid Species Photo Encyclopedia. I’ve mentioned this website in passing before, but it truly deserves its own post. Remarkably, this site lists 22,000 out of 28,000 orchid species! That’s almost 80% of all known orchids, with more continually added. There’s no other resource I know […]

A Tiny But Stubborn Stelis Orchid

Sunday, October 22nd, 2017

In all the years I’ve been doing this blog, this tiny Stelis orchid has not bloomed — until now! It had flowered in past years, but not since 2006. I don’t know what’s made it so happy, but it now boasts eight flower spikes, despite some hot and dry weather. Dave and I were finally […]

Water Orchids More During A Heatwave

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

Some readers may wonder why I’m posting a reminder about heatwaves at the start of autumn, but SF Bay Area locals understand. For us, the warmest months of the year are September and October. True to form, our cool, foggy weather gave way to warmer temps on schedule this year, and we’ve had a few […]

Jewel Orchids

Saturday, July 22nd, 2017

Is anything more opulent than a Jewel Orchid? These mini terrestrials are treasured for their striking foliage, which boasts beautiful vein patterns on satiny leaves. The first row of photos below shows Ludisias, the easiest and most commonly grown Jewel Orchids. They’re usually seen with dark purple leaves and bright pink stripes, but there are […]

Chain Orchids

Monday, June 5th, 2017

Ever heard of Chain Orchids? Also called Dendrochilums, they’re an unusual orchid family, lesser known than their close relatives, the Coelogynes. With multitudes of small, densely clustered flowers, they’ve earned the nickname Chain Orchids. Each “chain” consists of mini star-shaped blooms. Some people may sneer at tiny flowers, but massed by the dozens, or hundreds, […]

How to Care for Mother’s Day Orchids

Sunday, May 14th, 2017

Most orchids don’t deserve their fussy reputations, so don’t panic if you don’t know how to take care of your new Mother’s Day present. With a few basic care tips, orchids can keep their flowers for months, and then bloom again next year. Begin by placing your gift orchid in a shady place with good […]