If you are new to orchids, a phalaenopsis or moth orchid is a great
beginner orchid. If you can learn to grow and rebloom these, you're
ready to try other types of orchids.
With so many phals available to
choose from today, how do you pick out the best
Choose your Phalaenopsis
orchid carefully. If it does not pass any of the following four
criteria, do not buy it!
Leaves should be turgid and firm. IF they are
wilted or at all wrinkled, do NOT but the plant.
2. Leaves should be uniformly light to dark
green. A few blemishes are fine but avoid any plants that have soft or rotting
areas on any of the leaves.
3. If there are roots
emerging from the pot/stem, these should be firm and white with healthy green
tips. If the orchid plant in very loose in the pot, or the roots are soft or
mushy, put the plant back.
4. The potting mix should be
moist. If it is very wet and decaying, OR bone dry, choose another
Chances are you'll be buying
a phalaenopsis orchid that is in bud or bloom! Assuming the plant has past the 4
test questions above, it is best to buy a moth orchid with about half its
flowers open and the rest in bud. This will assure you of flower longevity and
you'll have a chance to see what the flowers look like. If all the buds are open,
you have no idea how long the flower has been in bloom-it could be months which
means once you buy the plants the flowers will not last
Avoid phalaenopsis orchid
plants that have small unopened buds. These can be quite sensitive to environmental
changes and there is a greater chance for these to shrivel or fall off, once
the plant is moved to your home. Once flower buds are open, or about to open, they
are less vulnerable to changes in the environment.