* Moisture loving orchids such as phalaenopsis like to stay moist
at all times. This does not mean they should be kept wet. Obviously
when you water they will be wet for a few hours, but then, they
should dry out and stay moist for several days.
* Excessive watering will kill orchid
roots, and will cause the mix, especially bark mixes,
to start breaking down. As it does so, it holds
less air, and thus more moisture. The result is that the roots,
stay wetter, are deprived of oxygen, and are more likely to
WHEN DO I WATER AGAIN?
to water your moth orchid not when it is wet, but when the mix is just damp to the
touch. There are some methods to help you get the hang of this:
If your plant is in a bark mix:
1. Stick a pencil about an inch into the mix-if the tip is just damp then water
your moth orchid again.
2. Put your finger about an inch into the mix and wiggle
it around-if it feels moist then wait before you water again.
3. If you're not sure your orchid needs water, wait a day
Remember, your phalaenopsis orchid must never go
bone dry between waterings. Some species require a drier winter rest, but this
does not apply to most phalaenopsis so simply aim to keep your plants moist
at all times.
If your orchid is in a peat-based mix
such as pro-mix, water when the mix turns a greyish color, or begins to pull away
slightly from the edge of the pot. You can also use either of the methods described
above. These mixes can be misleading, because while the surface is dry, deep
inside the pot, the mix is still quite wet.
Far more phalaenopsis are sold are sold
growing in sphagnum moss which also retains moisture for
much longer periods than bark mixes. With moss, you have to really be careful
that it not stay soggy. Make sure the top few inches of mix are beginning to grow
dry before watering again. In this case its best to use your finger to check for