Heritage Nursery has a range of quality orchids and we are always happy advise on how to grow these gorgeous plants. The orchid family is the second largest in nature, and here are some basic tips on caring for the most common types grown in the Canberra region.

What do orchids like?

Bright light - essential for good flowering - but no direct sun (which will burn).

Good fresh air circulation.

Frost protection in winter (amount depending on the type).

Good drainage - no wet feet.

Regular, weak fertiliser.

Phalaenopsis orchid  

or 'Moth Orchid'

One of the easiest Orchids to care for in the home. Their blooms can last up to 3 months. Usually kept indoors in our climate.

Provide them with indirect, bright light. The light is right if your hand casts a faint shadow when held 30cm over the leaves. Protect them from very low temperatures.

Water once a fortnight if potted in bark mix. They don’t need much and water MUST be allowed to drain away completely. If in a water-holding sphagnum mix, water once every 2-4 weeks. Do not allow them to dry out completely. Make sure water is room temperature - NOT icy cold from the tap.

Feed with Orchid Fertiliser once a fortnight. It’s also worthwhile dusting the leaves occasionally to let the light penetrate.

When the flowers have finished, you can often get repeat flowering from the same stem by cutting back to just above a node on the stem - we’ll be happy to show you how!

Fleshy roots will often grow outside the pot - this is normal and they should be left alone.

Cymbidium orchid

These tough and showy orchids are the most widely cultivated. They are easy-care and are usually grown outdoors in a spot protected from direct sun and frost. They are great on a sheltered balcony, verandah or under large, evergreen shrubs.

During the warmer months Cymbidiums will be happy outdoors, out of hot direct sun - about 50-70% shade is ideal. From late summer move them into more light (without burning the leaves) to stimulate new season flower spikes - too much shade means lots of lush green leaves and few flowers!

Fertilise weekly with an Orchid food to ensure flower spikes the following winter - follow packet directions.

When in flower, you may keep them indoors in a well lit room. The temperature can be on the cool side; the flower spikes will last longer this way.

Water about once a week, letting water drain through the mix before placing them back in their saucer or cover pot. Water daily during the hot summer months. They are quite happy crowded (root bound) in a pot, and normally need to be divided and repotted every 3 or 4 years, when they have become so crowded the water can’t get in easily.

Our range of these and other orchid types changes with the season, so come in and check out these sensational plants. We have the advice, fertilisers and special mixes to help you with Orchid success!

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