Orchids: Expert shares tips for looking after plant

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Drenching an orchid or allowing it to sit in water can be detrimental to the plant’s health. Overwatering can lead to root rot which can stop oxygen reaching the plant’s roots. The roots can then blacken and turn mushy over time.

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When going away for a few days or on holiday for a long period of time, it can be tempting to overcompensate when it comes to watering houseplants, even orchids.

However, this isn’t the best way to keep the plant happy.

Miracle-Gro’s gardening guru, Kate Turner, shared a simple trick to keep orchids “happy” while you’re on holiday.

She said: “If you haven’t got the time to mist it or you’re going on holiday, I really recommend you put your orchid on a tray that’s got pebbles on it.

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“You pile up the pebbles, put the water in the tray so the pebbles are in the water then you sit the orchid on top of the pebbles.

“The orchid isn’t sitting in water. That will give off enough humidity to keep the orchid happy.

“Mist the leaves rather than the flowers because otherwise they get a bit soggy and drop off.”

Kate also shared her tips for people attempting to get their orchids to reflower.

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Rather than feed it or fertilise it, Kate suggested allowing it to rest.

She said the plants need to “recover” in order to flower again.

She continued: “You want to leave somewhere that’s a bit darker, don’t feed it, just leave.

“It just needs a couple of months to go dormant for a bit to help it recover.

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“Don’t give it loads of feed, don’t repot it, let it recover.”

For those with happy, thriving orchids with lots of flowers on them, Kate suggested now would be a good time to feed them with specialist orchid feed.

She also suggested upping humidity levels for the plant.

She added: “Make sure they’re nowhere near bright sunlight because they hate the bright sunlight.

“This is for the more traditional moth orchids which is what most people have.

“Now is a decent time to repot an orchid if it needs it.

“But if it’s flowering and it’s looking good, feed it ideally with a special orchid feed.”

Find out more from Love The Garden.

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