Outdoor orchids seasonal care is of prime importance because it keeps these plants healthy, helps them produce colorful blooms, and maintains their aesthetic value. But each season has its challenges, requiring different care.
This guide explores the most crucial nurturing ways that must be followed in spring, summer, fall, and winter.
- Outdoor Orchids Seasonal Care
- Providing Outdoor Orchid’s Spring Season Care
- The Right Way To Give Summer Care for Outdoor Orchids
- Fall Seasonal Care Specifications for Outdoor Orchids
- Winter Seasonal Outdoor Orchid Care
Outdoor Orchids Seasonal Care
Seasonal care of outdoor orchids is essential because it helps them stay healthy throughout the year. It also allows these plants to produce the heaviest blooms during the blooming phase. Furthermore, care practices also maintain the aesthetic value of orchids, which enhances outdoor scenery, so that they will grow the correct way in each season.
– To Help Orchids Stay Healthy
Orchids face different issues in different seasons, which can stop their growth. In this case, you must consider how most of them cannot tolerate above 90 degrees Fahrenheit temperature in the summer and frost in the winter. Therefore, seasonal care is necessary to ensure orchids stay stress-free.
– For Captivating Blooms
Another big reason orchid care is crucial is blooming, and having this in mind, you must be detailed about how you give them care and walk along with the pace of the season. We all love orchids because of their vibrant and gorgeous flowers. But not taking care of them season after season will weaken them. As a result, you will see very few or no orchid flower during the blooming phase.
– To Maintain Aesthetic Value
There is no denying that orchids increase the beauty of the surroundings. Nonetheless, the neglect of pruning, repotting, and other seasonal care measures may result in the loss of their aesthetic value. Hence, it is imperative to implement seasonal care measures for the best way to successfully know how to grow orchids outside.
Providing Outdoor Orchid’s Spring Season Care
Spring seasonal care mainly revolves around checking the insect population, repotting orchids into bigger pots or containers, and feeding appropriate nutrients. Sometimes, you may also have to protect the orchids from dust storms because they can hurt their physical appearance when it comes to how often to water orchids outside know that you should do so once or twice a week, depending on the moisture in the soil.
– Keep a Close Eye on Insect Infestation
Most insects hide during the cold season and resurface when spring arrives. They feast on orchid leaves, stems, roots, buds, and flowers. When this happens, the plant becomes fragile and prone to diseases.
You will usually see mealybugs, aphids, whiteflies, and scale insects. They leave sooty mold, a black substance you may find on the surface they feed. In addition, you may also see thrips and spider mites on moth orchids, vanda, and even on cattleya orchids.
You can use essential oils like neem oil to eliminate them as orchids outdoor are growing. Wood ash, Diatomaceous earth, sulfur, and vinegar can also deter these unwanted creatures. It is best that you use commercial insecticides if you still see more insects roaming near your orchids.
– Repot the Orchids if Needed
Repotting orchids is another spring care measure you should take. Please do this at the start of this season, as the repotted orchid will find it easy to grow in the new home during this time. However, look for signs to know whether orchids need to be repotted.
You must try to break or decompose potting mix, and when there is a foul odor coming from the root zone, try to aim to repot the plant. Then, if you also see any cracks on pots, it may mean that the roots have overgrown and need a slightly larger area to grow in.
– Feed Nutrients Weekly
A spring orchid produces new growth, including flowers, in the season; hence, it consumes more minerals than usual. In short, when you are not adding fertilizers, this can cause nutrient stress, and that is why we suggest feeding a fertilizer dose every week.
– Safeguard From Dust Storms
Orchid growing becomes tough during weather extremes, like dust storms. They are common in the last weeks of the spring and can cause irreversible damage if you don’t take care of your orchids. A storm can shed all the plant leaves and flowers; dust-coated leaves can’t perform photosynthesis, a lifeline of orchids.
It is a great choice that you create a barrier, put the orchids in a growing tent, or bring them inside before the storm. When it ends, spray the plant with clean water and gently clean off dust using a paper towel.
The Right Way To Give Summer Care for Outdoor Orchids
Summer orchid care involves protecting the plants from direct sunlight. You should also water correctly and monitor daily temperature to ensure the plants stay free of stress. Moreover, keep a safe distance between two orchids to avoid heat buildup and enhance air circulation.
– Shield From Direct Sun
Orchids don’t like to be exposed to the sun because summers are the warmest month, when the sun is brighter; knowing the latter, you must protect the orchids as they prefer indirect light to do physiological processes like photosynthesis. Keeping them under the sun, especially in summer, will cause sunburn, dehydration, and many other complications.
A great choice would be to shift the orchids to shady spots during the peak sunny hours. If you have trees or bigger walls, then their shade will do. However, under the roof or awning is the best place for these plants. In addition to this, you can use shade cloth to prevent sun rays from reaching the orchids.
– Keep Checking the Moisture Levels in Potting Medium
Potting medium dehydrates quickly during the summer. Therefore, regularly check it and pour water whenever it dries out. However, keep moisture-loving orchids, like Phalaenopsis orchids, from facing drought stress. You should water them when the medium has some moisture.
Contrarily, cymbidiums and cattleya orchids growing in their best condition is when you let the potting media dry out between waterings. We suggest you search about the watering preference of the orchids and then plan when to water.
For this matter, you should know how often to water orchids outside in summer? You will usually have to water twice a week. But skip the second watering if the potting medium is still wet or soggy.
– Monitor Temperature Daily
Growing orchids outside in Florida becomes complicated in summer as temperatures can go above 85 degrees Fahrenheit. High temperatures can hurt orchids in several ways, like when they fasten up evaporation which leads to water stress, or as you see them curl up leaves which reduces photosynthesis, and lastly, having stress out roots.
Therefore, take the right measure for seasonal care when the temperature goes high, aiming to mist the orchids daily, keep the plants in the shade, and reduce fertilization.
– Don’t Overcrowd Plants
People make the mistake of putting orchid pots close to each other in the summer. It builds up the temperature even further, leading to heat stress. Furthermore, placing plants together reduces air circulation. Therefore, ensure the orchid pots are at least a foot away from each other.
You may now wonder, can you plant orchids outside in the ground? Some terrestrial orchid species, like Bletilla, can be grown in the ground. This is why you must try maintaining a one-foot distance between two orchids when you plant them in the soil to avoid heat stress on hot days.
Fall Seasonal Care Specifications for Outdoor Orchids
You should maintain the ideal light conditions for the orchids in the fall as the days get shorter in this season. Furthermore, fertilize smartly during this time as most orchids stop their growth. In addition, autumn is the perfect time to do pruning of orchid spikes and leaves.
– Focus on Suitable Lighting Conditions
The most critical fall season care is ensuring the orchids get the light they need to stay healthy. It is because the days start to get shorter in this season, which reduces light exposure. You should ensure the plants get at least six to seven hours of light daily.
– Cut Down Fertilization
Spring and summer orchids stop the growth in the fall. Therefore, they don’t need minerals in this season. So, it is a great choice that you reduce fertilization by half, and doing this will reduce the chances of nutrient toxicity and fertilizer burn, keeping in mind that fertilizing is not much needed if the growing season of the orchid isn’t in fall.
– Prune the Orchids With Pruning Shears
Spring and summer orchids shed flowers in the fall; now, is the best time to prune them with a sterilized shear. First, cut the dead buds and flowers from the spike. Then, remove old leaves, but let each spike have at least three of them.
After this, find the last flower on the spike and mark the node or the bump below it. Take the pruning shears and cut the spike half an inch above the node, and make sure that you also aim to trim those orchids this season that will bloom in the winter.
Phalaenopsis orchids are the popular ones that produce flowers from winter to spring. Cut the old spike and remove a few leaves to give these plants a fresh start.
Winter Seasonal Outdoor Orchid Care
The most crucial winter care is regularly monitoring the temperatures and helping the plants deal with cold stress. You should also safeguard the orchids from frost using blankets or covers. Furthermore, focus on humidity levels as the air can dry during the winter.
– Regular Check The Temperature
Temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit trouble the orchids. They slow down internal processes, which stunts growth. Therefore, regularly monitor the orchids outside temperature with a thermometer. You won’t have to search for “outdoor orchid plants for sale” as these plants won’t be going anywhere if you do the care.
When it’s colder than what orchids can tolerate, do these things, such as when you try to group them together or place an outdoor heater or heat lamps. You can also mulch the potting medium, and ensure that you reduce watering, this is also the case for different orchid varieties.
Moreover, outdoor orchids northern California face frost problems in the cold season. This problem can even lead to orchid death if you don’t do anything. For this, you should cover the orchids with frost blankets, build a mini-greenhouse and put the plants inside it. Take the orchids indoors if the forecast says the frost will stay for weeks.
– Manage Humidity Levels Smartly
Air usually stays dry in the winter, which can damage the orchids. It disturbs evaporation, stresses out roots, causes dehydration, and much more. Phalaenopsis, one of the easiest orchids to grow outdoors, can even get affected due to unsuitable humidity.
It should be above 40 percent, so you can simply use an outdoor humidifier, group the plants together to reduce airflow, and try to mulch the potting medium.
– Respect the Orchids’ Dormancy
Some orchid varieties, like dendrobium, or boat orchid, enter dormancy during the winter and stay in it till the spring. You should take care of such dormant orchids by reducing watering and fertilizer doses in half.
However, many orchids, like Christmas orchids, continue growing during the winter. For example, the Moth orchid blooms from winter to spring and needs more water and nutrients. Confirm when your orchids enter the dormancy during cold and decide the care measures.
Seasonal care is essential to outdoor orchid gardening as it keeps the plants safe and happy. Here, we have explored effective care practices for each season, which we are now summing up:
- In spring: Keep insect population in check, repot the plants, add nutrients weekly, and shield from dust storms.
- In summer: Monitor the temperature regularly, add water appropriately, and protect orchids from direct sun.
- In fall: Maintain suitable lighting conditions, cut down fertilization, and prune the orchids.
- In winter: Shield orchids from frost, temperature drop, and low humidity.
Taking care of them with these easy care tips will help the orchids stay healthy for years, so, follow our suggestions and have a serene and fragrant outdoor garden!
- 12 Plants That Like Morning Sun and Afternoon Shade Equally - September 26, 2023
- Are Banana Peels Good for Tomato Plants? Ways To Use It - September 25, 2023
- Is Cigarette Ash Good for Plants: Important Considerations - September 25, 2023