Starting an Orchid Collection

08:00

Hi there! I recently found an Orchid on special at my local Checkers. A beautiful Phalaenopsis hybrid for only R50. I though it would die for sure but I did some solid research and made sure I was educated on how to look after this special flower the day of my purchase. Needless to say, the more I researched the more I found and the more I found, the more Orchids I feel are missing from my life. 

Phalaenopsis Orchid (it also has another name for the specific flower colour and pattern but I am still trying to get it identified)
I think it is quite rewarding to understand a plants needs who are 100% dependent on the environment and nutrients you provide. It seems I am doing something right so far because my Phalaenopsis hasn't died, so I am looking for more Orchids to make a collection.

The biggest issue I have found is that not many nurseries supply a wide range of Orchids because they are pricey, the chances of people buying them are slim and they'll end up sitting on their shelves for many months. Then there are the horticulturists who exclusively grow Orchids however they seem to stay under the radar and only make themselves known to the nurseries. I am sure they sell to the public as well but it'll take a bit longer to track them down.

I managed to find a Dendrobium-Phalaenopsis Orchid last week, at my local nursery and shot-gunned it immediately. This type of orchid is different from the one I already have. I found this out during my hours of Orchid research. It gets me very giddy :)

Dendrobium-Phalaenopsis
Dendrobium-Phalaenopsis
The actual plant of this Dendrobium doesn't look very healthy, probably due to under fertilization and not getting enough light. It only has 4 leaves on one of the canes and the plant has four canes. This ratio is bad however it is flowering which tells me that it is coping.

If you have an Orchid and need some info, here are some links that helped me understand the different types and how to care for them;
Dani from Orchid Nature on YouTube
Brad from Brad's Greenhouse on YouTube
Les from Orchid Species on YouTube

There are also some South African sites I will link below. Some seem to be outdated but they still have some useful info.
Bay Orchids
Orchids SA
Marvelous Orchids
South African Orchid Society

In extra Orchid news, South Africa is hosting this yesar's World Orchid Conference from the 10th to the 14th of September at the Sandton Convention Center. You can read here for more information on exhibitors and how you can get tickets. The last time South Africa hosted this event was back in 1981 so this is a big deal guys :)

Let me know in the comments below if you have an Orchid and if you enjoy looking after it/them.

Claire

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2 comments

  1. Orchids are beautiful flowers and are my second favourite (the first being lilies of any kind!). I'm not very good at gardening or looking after pot plants/flowers (thus the reason why our garden are filled with plants that need no help from us) but exceptions are always made for my favourites.

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  2. Fabulous post! I was given an orchid as a gift and I'm trying desperately to keep it alive. Will check out the links asap! :)

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