I began with a few orchid plants in the 1970?s, and they have since become not just a hobby but an obscession. Indeed orchid growers often refer to orchids as ?being bitten by the bug? or ?orchid fever?.
Whatever one calls orchids they are the most rewarding of plants to grow. Although I grow several species that are challenging, I also have a collection of Phalaenopsis or Moth Orchids which are the easiest of plants to grow. They are not demanding in their care, requiring lighting similar to that given to African Violets, adequate humidity which can be increased by using pebble trays, a humidifer, or by growing in a higher humidity area, such as a bathroom.
A well grown plant will have an arching spike loaded with flowers that will bloom for months. One of my plants began blooming last May (late spring is when they normally come into flower) and is still blooming. Same spike, some eight months later.
Indeed orchid plants are so long lasting that you could will them to your children or grandchildren. They are not really subject to pests like other houseplants are, and a watering every 14 days or so is enough to keep them happy.
Plants are best bought from a nursery, simply because they tend to be healthier, and not as stressed as the orchids that one can purchase from hardware, retail stores and the like. I have had the opportunity this week to add to my collection from a reputable grower in Calgary. We have shipped in extra plants and they are available for sale at Tumbler Ridge Floral Fantasy and Gifts, across from the Medical Centre. I might add that I don?t really want to part with any orchid but I am out of window space. There is a limited collection of Phalaenopsis that are either blooming or just opening. The plants arrived in Tumbler Ridge on the 27th January and are in excellent condition. Offered are a range of colours.
The plants are mostly potted up in moss which works very well for me under the conditions that we have here. As we all know our water is very hard, and that may be a factor in the failures I have had using bark as a potting medium. In any event these days I use moss for potting, and my plants are happy. The orchids that I had potted up in bark have all died, so I cannot recommend that as a growing medium.
There are a few people in town who grow orchids, and with enough interest it would be nice to start an Orchid club for growers. There are clubs in other parts of the Peace, but it would be a first for Tumbler Ridge.
To have a look at the orchid collection, please drop by Floral Fantasy and Gifts, (across from the Medical Centre). Plants purchased will come with a care sheet, and of course you can always call me if you have a question about a plant. Happy growing!