Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Flowers Are Talking!

Flowers speak…….without saying a word. In fact, sometimes I feel it can be a bit noisy at my shop, with all of the chatter going on; and no one else is actually in the shop. At first I thought it was the voices in my head, but really it was just all of the flowers talking at once. No wonder I am easily distracted.

The orchid plant speaks to me. She is stunning when in bloom. It is like a performance. She has these quiet, not so interesting oval green leaves that just hang out near the bottom of the pot. And then, a simple, leggy stalk springs out with tiny buds, which unfold into bloom, one by one, from the bottom up. Each flower whispers “Hey, check me out, I am so beautiful, come on, just a little closer…” And when you are drawn in, the fragility and perfection of this flower will make you stop to reflect, even if it is just for a moment.

There is a misconception that orchids are hard to grow. Sometimes a translation is needed.I must admit. I thought the same. (I’d always planned on growing orchids when I “retired” and would suddenly have time on my hands.) But, actually, some orchids will bloom for months with very little care.
The easiest beginner orchid is the Phalaenopsis (fay-leh-NOP-siss),Buy this plant in bloom or at least in bud. Place in indirect sun, meaning, a bright, sunny room, but away froma window. Orchids that are in bloom, prefer less direct sun.

Orchids like a daytime temp of 60 to 70 degrees during the dayand 10 degrees cooler at night - most households.

Water your orchid once every 5 to 7 days. Orchids are killed from kindness of over-watering. Really, once a week is all that is needed. In their natural environment, rain gushes on the orchids, but, does not linger. It is important to NEVER let your orchid sit in standing water. The green roots that arches into the air will eventually be covered by a white skin that captures and holds water.
We recommend taking the orchid to the sink, flushing it with tepid water, let it drain in the sink, and return it to its original spot. That’s it! Relax and enjoy these magnificent flowers, which will reward your care with months of bloom when little else is flowering. Orchids do like a bit more humidity than Colorado can provide naturally, but this is easy to fix. Set them on a tray of pebbles or group plants together. Orchids also have the reputation for being expensive. The price depends on its variety, size and presentation. Compared to the price of a dozen long stemmed roses, the Phalaenopsis will bloom for months, while the cut roses will bloom for a week or so. But don’t forget. All flowers have something different to say. Are you listening?