I recently purchased an orchid from a Fred Meyer store. It is in a small clear plastic cup inside a green ceramic pot.
The instructions say to water only every 20-25 days, allowing plant to almost dry out between. There is no indication of how much water, since the plastic pot doesn't allow drainage. I think I may have given it perhaps a couple of tbsp of water, and the medium is still damp.
Since then, everything has died; blooms, leaves and stems. Is that normal?? I've tried two other orchids that died and never revived.
I took the plastic cup out of the pot, and there is a soft, green arm growing over the edge; that must be the velamen you mention, right? I noticed a tiny, fresh green leaf down by the crown; does that mean it will be sending new growth up? I guess my real question would be: do the plants keep leaves after the blooms are done, or does everything die off and start over again?
Since it is now almost July, when should I start the low temp situation for re-blooming? Is that an all day temp, or just at night? I could put it out in my garage at night and keep it in the house during the day, right?
I've probably asked too many questions for this venue, but I hate to spend so much money on something that just dies and is gone.
Thanks for any input you can give me!