How Do I Care for My Orchid After the Blooms Die?

Orchids are part of a plant group with over 30,000 species. Most orchids can rebloom several times after the blossoms dry up and die off. Some species require different care after the blooms die, but good general orchid care will help ensure your flower has the opportunity to rebloom.

...

Cutting

...

Some orchids require you to cut them to encourage reblooming. Certain species should be cut with a sterile tool just above where the stem grows out of the leaf and bulb. Other orchid species have black lines on the lower part of the stem that you should cut above. Other species do not require any cutting. Check with a greenhouse or garden store if you need help identifying your orchid's species or need specific cutting instructions. If you are concerned that your stem will get infected, you can rub a bit of cinnamon or rubbing alcohol on the freshly cut portion to keep bacteria out.

Repotting

...

After your orchid blooms die, you may need to repot your plant. Orchids should stay in the same potting soil for only two or three years at the most. Many orchids' roots are extremely sensitive, so use caution when repotting to avoid disturbing the roots too much. Plastic and clay pots are both suitable for orchids, but clay dries out quicker. Orchids in clay pots will require more frequent watering. Make sure your pot has adequate drainage holes to get rid of excess water. Repot your orchid in a premade orchid soil mix or make your own from osmunda fiber, soil, peat moss and shredded bark.

Watering

...

Overwatering your orchid can lead to root rot and quicker decay of the soil and compost. Use water the same temperature as the atmosphere around the orchid. Do not leave the soil soggy. Some orchid species require consistently moist soil, while others should be allowed to dry out completely before watering them again. Yellow or crinkled leaves are signs of overwatering, but these can take months to appear. Black or dark brown mushy roots are rotted. Remove these sections and repot your orchid.

Light and Temperature

...

Orchids thrive in humid environments with daytime temperatures between 65 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Nighttime temperatures 10 to 15 degrees cooler than the average daytime temperature will help stimulate new growth and blooms. Increase the humidity by placing your orchid pot on a tray with moist pebbles and mist your flowers with warm water each morning. Bright light will help your orchid rebloom after the blooms die. Allow your plant to get eight to ten hours of sunlight each day or use 40-watt florescent lights placed about 12 inches above the plant.

Fertilizing

...

Do not fertilize your orchids while they are dormant. During the blooming period, use a half-strength solution of a balanced 10-10-10 fertilizer every two weeks. If you grow your orchids in soil with a lot of tree bark, use a half-strength mixture of 30-10-10 every two weeks since tree bark does not contain the nutrients orchids need to thrive.