Orchids are a whole family of plants with more than 25,000 species to their credit. These are flowers in a very characteristic way, which can be of a large number of colors and which are increasingly popular as a gift flower. They are currently spread across virtually the entire world but are especially important in India, Madagascar, China, and the Himalayas.
If you want to learn how to plant these beautiful plants with spectacular flowers, keep reading us in this article, we show you a practical guide on how to plant orchids with the steps and various tips.
How to plant orchids
Follow these steps:
- Clean the plant from debris: Remove any debris or moss from your orchid before planting it in its new location.
- Prune roots in poor condition: some roots may have turned black or wilted. Cut them with a properly disinfected tool so that the plant does not lose energy in that part in poor condition.
- Place the orchid in the container: then fill it with the mixture of one of the three substrates described above, depending on the specific type of orchid.
- Give it a suitable location: Orchids need a good light supply and be in an area where air circulates, so make sure to locate your new container in a suitable place. It is preferable that they receive light indirectly, although in abundance.
Pots for orchids: which one to choose
The vast majority of orchids are epiphytic plants. This means that these are species that live in their natural habitat by anchoring themselves on trees or rocks instead of being buried. Therefore, if you bury your orchid in a pot with soil in the usual way in other plants, chances are that you end up killing the plant by rotting its roots, which are better if they are more ventilated.
Thus, the choice of pot is very important in the case of orchids, since there are different types of containers other than traditional clay pots and they are especially recommended for these plants. The usual thing with orchids will be to use small containers, although there are exceptions, as in the case of Cymbidium orchids, which need larger pots that fit their large root system. These are the most recommended orchid pots :
Transparent plastic pots: These are the most suitable both for orchids that photosynthesize by their roots, as well as those whose roots warn us when the plant needs watering since they allow us to see its root system without having to manipulate the plant.
Metal mesh pots: Allow greater breathing of the roots, and their design makes them easy to hang in high places, both for aesthetic purposes and to put the plant in points where it receives more sunlight.
Wood Flower Pots: Made from a special type of rot-resistant wood. Its design also leaves small gaps, which help improve both the breathing of the root system and the drainage of the container. It is recommended to cover your interior walls with a layer of moss before adding the substrate.
Of course, we can also resort to traditional ceramic pots or specific pots for orchids that are sold in specialized stores.
Substrate for orchids: which is better
There are three main types of substrates for orchids that can be made depending on the specific species of orchid. All of them coincide in their absence of soil, which does not benefit the roots of these plants. We have chosen mixtures that are made with one part of perlite, another of medium-grade charcoal and four parts of coconut shell or fiber or bark of fine, medium or coarse grain fir.
Coarse mix: This substrate is especially recommended for Cymbidium and other large species.
Medium mix: this is recommended for Cattleya and Phalaenopsis species, among others.
Fine mix: it is one of the most used for Oncidium, Paphiopedilum, Oncidiinae and basically all those that require higher humidity levels due to their small roots.
When to transplant orchids
Orchids need to be transplanted about every 2-3 years, but the plant gives us some signs when it needs a change of container. If the roots are dying due to lack of space, the plant is too big for its pot or the leaves closest to the substrate have dried or withered, it means that the orchid needs a transplant.