Orchidaceae Newsletter

"Your best online source of orchids plus more"
August, 2006

Hi Friends:

It's hard to believe that summer is on the down swing. The end is unfortunately in sight. If you are still one of the lucky ones that have a vacation coming up, we hope that the weather is great for you.

In this months article I decided to answer some questions that we get from customers. I hope you will find them helpful.

Coming this Fall our complete orchid book, Mastering Orchids. This will answer your questions about orchids! You WILL be able to grow fantastic orchids.

Our September newsletter will not be sent until after Labor Day.

Please drive carefully during these summer months. Don't forget to wear your seatbelts AND stay safe.

Just a reminder that we offer free second day FedEx delivery for you on any orchid plant you choose.

This month newsletter includes:
..Our Monthly Specials
..Our Monthly Tip - Q & A

..Again a beautiful orchid picture

Thanks again, Bob

Specials of the Month - to Sept 2006

We also have a wide variety of "Fresh from the Grower" bouquets and our Very Special Engraved Roses

Here are some stunning Orchids for any special occasion. How about one for your home?

Maroon Lady Slipper
This is a sparkling maroon-purple paph or Lady Slipper orchid and only $57.95 with Free Shipping

Ctna Rounda About Cattleya
This fragrant cattleya is a beauty to see and just as nice to get as a gift. With free shipping it is only $42.95 - That's rock bottom pricing.

Double Spike Yellow Phal with Deep Red Lips, this is a very erogenous orchid and the blooms last up to 3+ months.

Did you know we have access to orchids which bloom nearly all year long. Yes, you read that right. Check them out

Tip of the Month


Q What are good orchids for the beginner?

A The Phalaenopsis species are very good if you have a low light situation. If you have very high or bright light (but NOT direct sunlight), you may consider growing Cattleyas. These are the two easiest to grow.>

Q I have some leaves growing off my Phalaenopsis flower spike. What should I do?

A This shoot could be pruned off but I would suggest you let it grow. If you do it will begin to produce roots. After it does produce at least 3 roots it can be cut at the junction where it started growing off the flower spike. And like magic there is new orchid ready to be planted in a pot with some very fine bark.

Q Are orchid plants or blooms poisonous?

A No they are not although there are a few that can cause an allergic reaction like poison ivy. In fact, in Hawaii and Asia orchid blooms are used as garnishes on food dishes. Before you do this remember that if you sprayed insecticide on the plant there may be some remnants.

Q I have an air conditioner in my home, is that a problem?

A Most air conditioning units not only lower the temperature but also take out humidity. Orchid plants need humidity between 40 - 60%. I would recommend that you use humidity trays or place your orchids in the bathroom. You could also turn the air conditioner off in the room that has your plants.

Q My phalaenopsis was recently left in a very hot car (not on purpose, of course). I removed the dead leaves, flowers, and spikes that resulted from this. The base of the plant where I removed the leaves is still green and most of the roots appear to be ok. Is it possible for an orchid to grow new leaves at this point?

A I suggest that you wait about a week after you did all your trimming. If the roots and leaves still are green and look firm then your plant will make it.

Q I have a south facing window box that sticks out from my kitchen. What should I use to diffuse the light. With that should I keep my orchids there?

A There are any number of sun diffusing glazes that can be used. Any glass store can help you. Also a sheer curtain would do the same. I would also recommend that if you have shelves the orchids that like more sun, e.g.., vandas be on the top shelf. This can give shade during the summer to those orchids that do not need direct all day sun.

Q I have a phal which has finished blooming. Now I see the bottom leave seem to be drooping or wrinkled. I have watered the plant a little more but nothing has happened. Would misting help?

A Personally, I don't think misty makes much of a difference. You might just be seeing that these are old leaves that will die as the new leaves take over, some phals do this. Also, you may try allowing a little less light.

Be careful watering so you don't get water in the crown of the plant where the new leaves are coming from. Water that stays in the crown is not good for the orchid plant. You can get crown rot. Use a paper towel to soak up any water left in the crown.

Q I have several orchid plants, phals, that were in bloom when I bought them but after 16 months there are still no blooms. What should I do?
Also, I fertilize every other month with an orchid fertilizer, 7-8-6.

A There are several things that will help phals re-bloom. These include fertilizing "every week with a weak mixture". I suggest a 20-20-20 fertilizer and use half the amount of fertilizer that is suggested (the weak part).
Another thing very important to phals is for 3 weeks let them experience temperature variations of 15 degrees but not lower than 50 degrees Fahrenheit. This can be done in the fall by leaving the orchid plant out on nights when the temp drops. Or if your plant is indoors crack a window near the plant. Please don't allow a draft directly on the plant.

Q: Can I grow orchids from seed?

A Yes you can but it is a long and arduous process. It will take about 3+ years before you see the beautiful results of your labor. Starting from seed also requires some special equipment. It also requires growing the seedlings in a flask for a period of time.


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Picture of the Month

Dendrobium Rigidum - A Beauty

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