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Blooms

2016/8/3 11:06:15

Question
QUESTION: My wife and I have received a couple of orchids. They came from Lowe's. They had beautify flowers on them when we got them, lost them, and have not had a flower since (approximately 2 years). We keep them under our nook widow on the west side of the house - they get medium light. What are we doing wrong?
ANSWER: Hi G Meeks,

Do you know what type of orchids you bought at Lowe's? Without knowing what type(s) of orchids they are makes it very difficult to tell you what to do to make them bloom again. Look for a tag or label in the pot to see if there is a name on it and write back. If there are no name tags, describe the orchid, such as: leaf size and shape, bulbs or no bulbs, size of the plant, how were the flowers presented (few or lots of flowers, grew from the top or bottom, flower spike long or short, etc.). With the information I will try to make an educated guess as to what type of orchids you have. Fair enough? (grin)

Also, it would be helpful to know where you live so I can tailor the response to your area.

Jim Kawasaki
San Jose, Ca.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Jim,
I had to go to Lowe's today and checked out the orchids. They are phalaenopsis orchids. I live in Titusville Forida.

Thanks,

Greg

Answer
Hi Greg,

Thanks for looking to see what type of orchids you have. I thought they might have been phalaenopsis. Also, knowing where you live helpsme to give you more specific guidelines on what and how to grow them and get them to rebloom for you.

Living in central Florida near the Atlantic, your growing environment should be great for the phals. While a western exposure is okay, a southern or eastern window would be better. If southern, place it where it will be in afternoon shade, eastern should be no problem. Also, it is beneficial if there are occasional light breezes as phals. enjoy some air movement around them.

Temperatures should be the same as what makes you comfortable, nothing too hot or cold. (grin) But, in early fall it would be good to place them where temperatures go down near 55 F for several weeks to help initiate the bloom cycle. Also at this time, in place of feeding them with fertilizer, use one tablespoon epsom salt per gallon water instead. Yes, you heard right, epsom salt which is magnesium sulfate and it will help the bloom cycle along.

Humidity should not be a problem there in Titusville, in or out doors unless you have the a/c going.

Water when the potting mix becomes barely moist and feed it a balance type orchid fertilizer but use only 1/4 the amount suggested as phals. do not require lots of it.

Hope this helps you to get it to rebloom. Be patient a while longer as it may be late fall before you see a bloom spike emerge and grow then several more months to see it in full bloom.

Jim Kawasaki
San Jose, Ca.

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