Orchid: Express shares tips for watering plant
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Orchids are bright, beautiful and unique, but they do have a reputation for being difficult to care for. In the wild, orchids can usually be found in tropical climates, usually growing on trees. The indoor plants can live for years and years if they receive the correct care. There are actually around 28,000 species of orchid but one of the most popular varieties is the moth orchid, also known as the phalaenopsis.
The plant is often available to buy in supermarkets and local garden centres.
Express.co.uk has exclusively spoken to three experts about the “best” methods for watering orchids.
Suzie Woolley, head of product at Serenata Flowers shared how you can check whether your orchid needs watering.
She suggested checking your orchid’s roots which should be visible through the plant’s clear pot.
If the plant’s roots are grey or white, your orchid needs more water. If left, the plant’s roots can become dry or even brittle.
When it comes to watering orchids, they require a slightly different method compared to other houseplants. Suzie suggested “giving them a bath”.
She explained: “Take the orchid out of any decorative pot it’s in and place it in the bath or sink in the plastic pot with the drainage holes.
“Use lukewarm water that has not been softened or distilled and water thoroughly for 15-20 seconds. Allow the water to run straight down the plughole – don’t let it sit in water.
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“Leave it to drain for about 15 minutes before putting it back into position.”
Gardening expert at Hayes Garden World, Angela Slater, shared a similar method which involved dipping the whole pot into tepid water for a few seconds.
She also urged plant owners to remember that during an orchid’s resting period it needs less water than when it’s actively growing.
Angela’s “trick” for watering orchids is to wait until the thick roots of the orchid have turned silver in colour.
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She then suggested dipping the whole pot into tepid water for a “few seconds” – long enough for the plant’s roots to turn green again.
She added: “All orchids can be watered in this manner- just wait until they are slightly dry.
“Miltonias need to be kept damp all year round, but a lot of orchids can become almost dry before watering.”
Wendy Rea’s method involved watering the plant from above with fresh water or rainwater.
The expert florist and business manager at Direct2Florist said orchids need “a specific amount of water” which can vary depending on the species.
She continued: “In general, it’s best to water your orchid once a week, making sure the soil is evenly moist but not waterlogged as unlike many other houseplants, they don’t like to sit in water and this can also cause the plant to rot.
“Water the plant from above with fresh water – you can also do this with contained rainwater – for about 10-15 seconds and then allow the plants to drain for around 10-15 minutes to ensure that the potting mixture is dried out.
“Avoid getting too much water on the leaves or flowers, as this can cause damage.”
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