Growing Orchids Indoors

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Growing Orchids Indoors - Provided by eHow
Growing orchids indoors is possible by putting them in an east-facing window, watering them with lukewarm water and wiping the leaves dry with a clean cloth. Grow orchids inside the house, never throwing away a plant once the blossoms die, with tips from... View Video Transcript

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Yolanda Vanveen

Video Transcript

Hi, this is Yolanda Vanveen from And in this series, we're learning all about how to take care of orchids indoors. Now, I've always been afraid of orchids, and I get them beautiful orchids in bloom and then I take them home and they bloom for a couple months and they die and all I have left are the little green leaves. And I've always thought, "What do I do with it now?" And it would never bloom for me again. Once they're done blooming, I chop off the dead bloom and periodically, I'll actually lose the leaves from the bottom. And don't worry when that happens because the leaves will actually die and grow new leaves. So even if you've lost one round of leaves, the plant's still alive. Never throw it out. Always save it if there's any part of green left. I have learned that the east-facing window is an ideal spot for orchids. They love the morning sun, and they don't really like the afternoon sun because it's too hot. It'll just bake them. So if you've got a sunny window in your bathroom or your kitchen that follows the east, that's the perfect spot. And artificial light is always great, too, because I found my orchids love this window because I have a light that's on at night, and even in the nighttime, they're getting artificial light and they seem to do better over the years that way. And I never lose them. I've been in shock. I've had these for a few years. So the trick when watering them is...this one's really dry. I can feel it's dry. The moss inside looks really dry. It's not really pushing. It's kind of crunchy. So I want it to be soft. So I'm going to run water through here, and the trick is not to use hot water or cold water. Use kind of lukewarm water. And some people say that you should take a gallon of water and set it aside for a day or two because some of the chlorine from your city water will settle or then the water's the actual...the same temperature as your room. But I found just using lukewarm water's really good for me. Our city water's really good. There's hardly any chlorine in it, thank goodness, so it seems to do really well for the plants. So I'm soaking this -- just soaking it -- probably for 10 to 15 minutes. You really don't need to soak it for hours or anything like that. But I want all of the moss to really soak up or sometimes there's bark dust that soaks it up, too. But you remember, never leave it sitting in water, so I always drain the water back out. Always. Never leave water sitting with an orchid. So always drain out every bit of it. So the key is to have that wet, but no standing water, and it'll be fine for another week. Now, another trick that I learned, too, is to actually wipe off the water off of the leaves. And just like washing your face, they love to be cleaned, then that way, they can breathe much better and they'll do better in the end. And so I just leave these in the window, and they seem to do really well. And there's different types of blooming fertilizers in the winter. I always, about Thanksgiving time, I hit them with a little bit of blooming fertilizer, and a lot of times, they'll shoot up new spikes and I'll get new blooms. But I've found whether I use the fertilizer or not, they're kind of on their own time frame and they'll bloom when they want to. So I try not to take my orchids too seriously, and I enjoy them even when they're not in bloom. But when they are in bloom, I try to take care of them by just enjoying them. And the trick with them is not to get these...don't spray them too hard with water. It's almost better to mist them or stick them in the shower so they're not directly in water, but they get the steam. They love steam; they love moisture; they love humidity. So in brand-new houses, sometimes it's hard for them to grow well. But never throw them out as long as they're green, and if you do kill them, don't take it personally because there's always more orchids that you can purchase that will just love your home.