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Beginners orchid?


Far too old to grow up now.
I just went around surveying all my plants, and the startling thought occured to me that I don't have, nor have I ever had, an orchid! The further thought occured that I don't know the first thing about them... this is unacceptable.

So now I am looking for recommendations for a begginer orchid.

Nothing complicated or terribly expensive, incase I kill it. Just something fairly simple that I can learn with.

Also, suggestions for sources of information, care tips ect.


edit: Just found sources of info in another post, so now I am only looking for type recommendations.
check your phone book and see if there is an orchid dealer near you or check Home Depot.

a good beginner orchid to start with is a Phal. and also easy to care for. it is also called the Moth orchid. just water it once a week w/ shaded light and it should grow great for ya.

actually any orchid you find at a local store is going to be easy to grow. the harder and wierder ones you will have to go to a show or order off line to find them.
A phal might be a good one, since you're in Florida. I've found them to be impossible to grow, just because they need warmer temps. Ludisia discolor, if you can find it (I've seen hanging baskets in home depot here for $6 recently) is by far the easiest that I've grown. Dendrobiums tend to be fairly easy also.
Go to http://orchidweb.org/welcome.html and then go to market place.  Then select the state you want. You should have tons around you. EDIT: e-mail phil first to see what he has availible.

on my way home today i stopped at Home Depot on my way to Walmart and they had plenty of orchids worth a try to grow. most of them i have already but, of diff. coloration.
Thanks everyone.

First I am going to email Phil... as soon as I track down his address again (I'd lose my head if it wasn't attached)

Then I plan to head over to Home depot and Walmart and have a look at what they have... Not planning to buy just yet, since I will be gone for a few days next week, that and I need to do some major rearranging of my plant space, it seem that I forgot to take into account the effect of the Mimosa tree getting it's leaves back and now most of my current CP grow space is mostly shaded  

From what I can tell though it should be wonderfull for some of the orchids. The good news is that the forced move of the CP's will effectively triple my grow space... hehe

Thanks again.
When you go to the store a lot of times they discount nonflowering orchids by as much as 50%. I've gotten a couple at my local Home Depot.

    try this e-mail addy to get ahold of Phil.

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i e-mailed him a week ago and still no answer.
Thanks that's the one I was looking for.
  • #10
Hi Maehem

I'm glad you want to try some orchids. But be forwarned...they can be as addictive as CPs.
I have about 35...and growing.

Orchids are not as hard to grow as some people think. There are many varieties that are pretty easy...dendrobiums, phalenopsis and even the beautiful (and my favorite) paphiopedilums aren't difficult.

Dens do well in an east window...phals and paphs also do not need a high amount of light. They like a well-draining substrate (i use combinations of orchid bark, lava rock and/or a bit of charcoal) as too much wetness around the roots can cause them to rot. I am trying now to save several phals a coworker gave me that were potted tightly with pure sphagnum moss in a plastic pot (little breathing room). The leaves are dehydrated because the roots rotted. Orchid bark allows air to the roots and quicker drying. I water mine thoroughly once to twice a week. I use a weak fertilizer every other watering during growing seasons...and sometimes a dash of Superthrive.

I have 4 paphs in bloom and will soon be posting a pic of them here. A fifth is in spike.

When they bloom, most orchids flowers last for months. And the variety is mind boggling. You can get reasonably priced orchids at Lowes but be aware they can be diseased. I am getting ready to write Lowes about them selling orchids with black spot...it spreads and can kill your orchids at home if brought in.

Let us know what you get!

  • #11
Thanks P.A.K. for the advise and warning, I'll remember that, all things in moderation lol!

I will definately let everyone know what I get since once I get it I wll probably have lots more questions
  • #12
A thought on buying from Home Depot and the like: most of the orchids that you see there are very stressed.  They're going to require a lot of TLC.  An orchid beginner, even with the best of intentions, can easily finish the job of killing them.  There's no guarantee even experienced orchid people can save some of these plants.  So it might be better for you to get some experience with a healthly plant from a reputable nursery that can tolerate minor mistakes before you try one that's barely alive.
  • #13
I think someone should make a HUGE orchid care thingy that stays at the top of the page like the dormancy ones in general discussions... anyone willing to tackle this?
  • #14
Okay, I finally did it, last friday, had to get 2 cause I couldn't pick one (I'm in trouble already aren't I?) Both Dendrobium.

Thanks to George and his caresheet things are going wonderfully I will post pics soon.