Posts Tagged ‘Humidity’

Orchid Care and Maintenance Tips : Temperatures for Orchids (Part II)

As I briefly mentioned in Part I of my Temperatures for Orchids series, a change in temperature should always coincide with a change in humidity.  For example, you’ll want to make sure there is sufficient humidity when increasing temperatures and vice-versa. 

You can keep things in check by using a simple hygo-thermometer.  A hygo-thermometer lets you check humidity and temperature levels at a glance.  I bought the Extech 445702 Hygro-Thermometer and Temperature Monitor years ago and now own three of them.  It makes monitoring the humidity and temperature environments of your orchids really easy.   The digital LCD display is large and easy to read.  The device is portable or can be mounted on the wall–near your orchids.

Extech 445702 Hygro-Thermometer and Temperature Monitor

If you’d like to just monitor the temperature, you can’t go wrong with the waterproof pocket-sized thermometer.  The great thing about this little guy is that you can take fast, accurate temperature readings with just a push of a button.   It’s great if you have to have to monitor a few orchids in different locations.  At less than $20 each, they make great gifts.
Thermometer - Waterproof Stainless Steel Pocket-size Thermometer

These are my favorite devices for monitoring the temperature/humidity levels for my orchids.  Do you have any favorites you’d like to share?  Send me an email at carol (at) orchidcarelady (dot) com.  Hope to hear from you soon!

Warmest wishes from sunny Florida,

Carol :-)
The Orchid Care Lady

Carol the Orchid Care Lady

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Carol’s Orchid Care and Maintenance Tips : Humidity for Orchids

Orchid Care and Maintenance, Tropical Orchid, Orchids Care, Orchid Humidity

Today’s orchid care and maintenance tips will help you provide an “orchid-friendly” humidity level in your home.

Most orchids thrive only when maintained in HIGH humidity conditions – think 50% relative humidity or higher (rainforest levels)!  Unfortunately, most homes typically have a relative humidity level in the neighborhood of 10-20%.  This will not keep your indoor orchids happy for very long. :(

Giving your orchids the humidity conditions they enjoy can be done fairly easily (and inexpensively).  Here’s how to care for orchids:

OPTION #1: Humidifier (Most expensive option)

Your first option is to use a household humidifier, and run it in the room where you keep your orchids.

In case you’re curious, here’s the orchid humidifier I use specifically for my indoor orchids – pretty cheap, super-easy to clean, and so far I have no complaints:

Orchid Care, Humidity for Orchids, Orchids, Orchid, AU-400 NewAir Humidifier

OPTION #2: Misting (Time consuming option)

You can also produce a similar effect by lightly misting them several times a day. Just be sure not to mist your plants late in the day—leaving them wet at night or in cooler temperatures makes them susceptible to disease. (Read about how I mist my orchids in this earlier post about watering your orchids.)

Orchids Care, Orchid Care, Orchid Care and Maintenance, Orchid Humidity

OPTION #3: Humidity Tray (The perfect balance!)

One of the best, low-cost ways to raise the humidity level of your orchid’s environment is to grow your plants over what’s called a “humidity tray”.  Remember, you never want to let your orchids sit in standing water.

A humidity tray is something you can either make yourself, or purchase from an orchid specialty supplier relatively cheaply. One of the main benefits of using a humidity tray is that you can increase the humidity directly around your orchid – while keeping the rest of your home at normal levels :-)

And if you’re curious – what the heck does a humidity tray look like exactly?  Here’s a good example of one (with a good explanation on how it works):  Humidity Tray for Orchids

Orchid Care and Maintenance, Orchid Care, Orchids Care, Orchid Humidity

You can even DIY a humidity tray for your orchids using a shallow container and clean pebbles.

Orchid Care and Maintenance, Orchids Care, Humidity Tray, Pebble Tray

Those are just a few of my humidity orchid care and maintenance tips.

Of course, everything you need to know to achieve the perfect orchid humidity level is covered in Ryan’s Orchids Made Easy book. (Including a few VERY important things you need to watch out for when using a humidity tray — and one thing even experienced growers often overlook.)  Sign up for his Free Orchid Care newsletter HERE.

Warmest wishes from sunny Florida,

Carol :)
The Orchid Care Lady

Orchid Care, Orchids, Orchids Care, Growing Orchids, Orchid Care and Maintenance

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Phalaenopsis Orchid Care Instructions

Phalaenopsis orchids are among the easiest growing orchids for beginners!  These beauties can flower throughout the year (peaking in the spring) and are incredibly easy to care for as they enjoy much of the same indoor conditions found in our homes.  Just look at these flowers bloom!

Phalaenopsis Orchid Care Instructions

Phalaenopsis Orchid Care Instructions : (You might also find my post on the anatomy of a phalaenopsis orchid helpful.)

Light They grow easily in a bright window, with little or no direct sunlight.

Temperature Phalaenopsis should be above 60 F at night, and range between 75 and 85 F or more during the day.

Water Because they have no major water-storage organs other than their leaves, they must never completely dry out. Phalaenopsis orchids should be thoroughly watered and not watered again until nearly dry.  Want to know how I water my orchids?  Check out my Orchid Care and Maintenance Tips : Watering Your Orchids post for more details on my drench and drain method.

Humidity The recommended humidity is between 50 and 80 percent.  You an adjust humidity levels in your home by setting the orchids on humidity trays or on gravel, partially filled with water, so that the pots never sit in water.

Fertilizer It is best to fertilize your phalaenopsis orchid on a regular schedule, especially if the weather is warm, when the plants are most often growing.  Twice-a-month applications of high-nitrogen fertilizer (such as 30-10-10) are appropriate where bark-based media are used. Otherwise, a balanced fertilizer is best. When flowering is desired, a high-phosphorus fertilizer (such as 10-30-20) can be applied to promote blooming.  You can also dilute the fertilizer into your orchid’s water, making it a regular part of your watering schedule.

Potting This is best done in the spring, immediately after flowering. Phalaenopsis orchids must be potted in a porous mix. Potting is usually done every one to three years. Mature plants can grow in the same container until the potting medium starts to decompose, usually in two years.

To repot, remove all the old medium from the roots, trim soft, rotted roots, and spread the remaining roots over a handful of medium in the bottom of a new pot. Fill the rest of the pot with medium, working it among the roots, so that the junction of the roots and the stem is at the top of the medium.

Want to learn a few tricks of the trade?  Sign up for Ryan’s Free Orchid Care Email Tips–he shares his best secrets with his readers.  You’ll learn secret orchid care techniques expert growers use to super-charge their plants!

Warmest wishes from sunny Florida,

Carol :)
The Orchid Care Lady

These phalaenopsis orchid care instructions are taken from my AOS guides and from a series of Orchid Care Cheat Sheets I received for free from Ryan.  They’ve come in so handy when I just want a quick refresher on orchid care!

Orchid Care, Orchids, Orchids Care, Growing Orchids, Orchid Care and Maintenance

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