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5 Easy-to-Grow Orchids

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Moth Orchids

Moth orchids are some of the least expensive, most common, and longest-blooming orchids available. In fact, one bloom spike can look great for four months or more. The flowers appear in shades of white, pink, red, green, yellow, orange, and purple.

How to Grow Them: Give moth orchids (Phalaenopsisselections) a spot in low, medium, or bright light and water weekly or every other week. Promote more and larger blooms by feeding moth orchids monthly with a fertilizer formulated for orchids. The plants do best in temperatures from 50 to 75F.

Here’s a Hint: A drop in temperatures helps encourage them to bloom.

Dendrobium Orchids

Dendrobium flowers, often seen at florists in bouquets, offer long-lasting blooms (they stay looking good for a month or more) in a wonderful array of colors from white to purple, pink, and even green.

How to Grow Them: Dendrobium selections prefer a spot in medium to bright light. Water them weekly or every other week and fertilize them monthly with a plant food formulated for orchids. They do best in temperatures from 50 to 70F.

Here’s a Hint: Hundreds of dendrobiums are available; the most common types keep their foliage all year and bloom on new stems.

Oncidium Orchids

Sometimes called dancing lady orchids, oncidiums offer lots of colorful smallish flowers in clusters of 50 or more. They commonly appear in shades of yellow, purple, red, pink, and white, often with flamboyant, contrasting markings.

How to Grow Them: Oncidium selections do best in medium to bright light. Water them weekly or every other week and feed them monthly in spring and summer with an orchid fertilizer. They do best in temperatures from 50 to 75F.

Here’s a Hint: Some oncidium orchids are wonderfully fragrant — watch for them to add an even more delightful note to your indoor garden.

Cymbidium Orchids

Featuring waxy, long-lasting flowers in winter or early spring and an easy-care nature, it’s no wonder why cymbidiums are popular indoor plants.

How to Grow Them: Cymbidium orchids flower best if given a spot in bright light. In fact, you can even bring them outdoors to a shady spot for the summer. Water them weekly to keep them from drying out. Get them to bloom best by fertilizing them monthly in spring and summer. It does best in temperatures from 50 to 70F.

Here’s a Hint: Cymbidium orchids flower best if given cool temperatures — under 50F — for a number of weeks, which is why they’re usually in bloom in winter.

Lady’s Slippers Orchids

Perhaps the most distinct orchids, tropical lady’s slippers offer big blooms composed of a hollow “pouch” backed by a sepal and two petals. Even better: Many lady’s slippers orchids bear variegated foliage, so they look beautiful even when they’re not flowering.

How to Grow Them: Lady’s slippers (Paphiopedilium) grow well in low, medium, or bright light. Water them roughly once a week, and feed them monthly in spring and summer with an orchid fertilizer. They do best in temperatures from 50 to 70F.

Here’s a Hint: Watch out for multi-floral varieties that produce several flowers per stem. They’ll give you a bigger display for a longer period of time.

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