These plants are the perfect gifts for a new home, Mother’s Day or Easter, as they’ll last for many years and continue to bring joy and beauty into the lives of the recipients. But to make their beauty last, you do need to take care of them – we got the three top tips from Bradford’s Tong Garden Centre for keeping your orchids alive and looking better for longer.
- Water. Don’t over-water – more orchids are killed by over-watering than anything else, so it’s important to leave them until the roots and compost are almost dry before watering.
- Feed. Orchids benefit from a correctly-balanced and quality feed, but it’s important to water them between feeds as they don’t like a build-up of salts in their growing medium – it needs to be flushed out before feeding again to avoid this.
- Position. Keep your orchid in a semi-shaded position. In the wild, orchids grow under the jungle canopy, so it’s crucial to keep them out of direct sunlight.
If you’re following these tips but your orchid still looks a little worse for wear, why not take it along to Tong Garden Centre on Saturday 23rd March? Following last year’s successful event, they’re hosting another ‘Orchid MOT Day’, where lovers of the tropical plant can take theirs along for free advice and health checks.
The day will be led by former orchid grower Chris Channon, an RSH gold medallist. ‘People are welcome to bring their own orchids along during the day and I’ll be able to give them a free orchid MOT and diagnose any problems they may have,’ he says, ‘as well as give handy “dos and don’ts” on how to treat them – especially when they’re not at their best.’
Chris will be in the houseplant area at the Tong Lane Garden Centre between 10am–4pm on Saturday 23rd March, and will be giving ‘Tropical Orchids for Beginners’ talks and repotting demonstrations at 11am and 2pm. There is no charge for entry.