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How to water an orchid

Orchids are not like typical plants. While most plants grow in soil, orchids in nature grow on trees by clinging to the bark of the tree and thriving on the nutrients that wash down the tree over the orchid roots. Because of this, orchids need to be watered a little differently than other plants.

With most plants you want to saturate the roots. For an orchid, you usually grow it in a mixture of bark chips and you water the orchid by saturating the bark to mimic the moist environment where orchids grow in nature.

Step 1: Use room temperature water

Water shouldn't be hot or cold, just room temperature.

Step 2: Put the pot in a container at least as deep as the pot itself

You will need something big enough to hold the whole flower pot, such as a bucket or plastic tub. Whatever you use, be sure it is clean and doesn't have any traces of chemicals in it. Put the pot into the container.

Step 3: Gently pour water over the bark chips until water starts coming out the bottom of the pot

Normally when you water plants you would stop when water comes out the drainage holes. Not for orchids. Just keep watering.

Step 4: Continue watering until there is about an inch of water in the bottom of the bucket

You want a layer of water in the bottom of the bucket.

Step 5: Leave the orchid to soak for 10-15 minutes

The goal is to let the water in the pot be absorbed back up into the bark to saturate the bark chips.

Step 6: Remove the pot and let it drain completely

After soaking, take the pot out of the bucket and allow the excess water to drain out.

Step 7: Remove water from the leaves

You don't want water to be left on the orchid leaves, especially those little crevices where the leaf attaches to the stem. Those little notches have a tendency to catch water, but if left in there it can cause rotting. Use a paper towel to soak up the water out of those little crevices.

Step 8: Place the orchid back in bright but indirect sunlight

Orchids need bright light, but not direct light. After watering , put it back in a well-lit area and it will continue to thrive!

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