Orchids are one of the most eccentric and fascinating types of plants in the plant world. This section offers descriptions, images and valuable advice on many species of orchids, beautiful plants with unquestionable charm. Numerous genera and varieties are part of the Orchidaceae family. It is therefore very difficult to give an overall description. They are spread all over the planet, with the exception of the Poles and deserts. Most live in the tropical and subtropical wetlands of the planet, but are also widespread in Italy in the wild. The most widespread, the epiphytes, live clinging to trunks, branches and moss-covered rocks.
However, there are also some that have underground rhizomatous roots. The orchids they have linear and whole leaves, usually alternating.
The flowers can be solitary or collected in racemes composed of three sepals and three petals. One of these is called labellum, whose shape varies according to the species. Its purpose is to attract pollinating insects.
The epiphytic species are characterized by aerial roots which, thanks to a particular coating, are able to absorb environmental humidity, vital for their survival.





























Family and genderFamily. Orchidaceae
ExposureThey generally love the bright shadow
RusticMost not. Only 10-15% live in temperate or rigid areas.
Type of plantPerennial herbs.
Epiphytes, with aerial roots, or terricolous, therefore bulbous or rhizomatous
colorsWhite, pink, red, yellow, green, purple.
HeightFrom 10 cm to several meters for climbing plants
PropagationSowing, division.
temperatures
Generally speaking, orchids they are divided into three categories based on their climate needs. It is essential for all that there are changes of temperature throughout the year because this simulates the alternation of the seasons and stimulates flowering.
1) Cold greenhouse orchids
They are plants that originally live at fairly high altitudes. Ideal temperatures range from 10 to 15 ° C.
2) Temperate greenhouse orchids
The most suitable for growing in apartments because they do not need special equipment to make them live properly. The ideal is that they are kept in winter at around 15 ° C. In summer we recommend the temperature of about 20 °
3) Warm greenhouse orchids
In winter they need about 18 ° C. During the vegetative period, instead, they require about 5 degrees more to be able to stimulate them adequately and then bring them to bloom.
Almost all the orchids, in nature, live in very bright shadows. They usually grow clinging to trees and can enjoy the shade of their leaves. If we want to cultivate them we must provide them with the same conditions. In winter they can also be exposed to direct light. In summer, instead, they should be placed in a bright place near windows. The light, however, must be filtered by curtains so that it does not damage the leaves. An excellent alternative is to put them outside in the summer season. The ideal is a position where a lot of light arrives, but filtered by the leaves of other plants.
The best choice is to use transparent plastic pots (which makes it easy for us to check the state of the roots). The most suitable substrate is the specific pine bark (not too resinous) because it retains moisture, but also allows air to circulate. Other materials can be: coconut fiber, perlite, polystyrene, pumice. The epiphytes can also be grown on a "raft", that is made to cling to pieces of wood bark (as they would do in nature).
Each orchid has its own needs, but you can give general advice: first of all it is better to avoid over-watering and if we have any doubts it is better to wait a few more days before proceeding. Especially for epiphytes, the ideal way to understand when it's time to irrigate is to feel the weight of the pot. We will proceed only when this is very light (and the silver roots).
It is always better to avoid wetting the collar and the pseudobulb (because the rots are a real danger). An excellent method is immersion: insert the jar in a basin with a few centimeters of water and wait for the substrate to soak. The water must be as limestone-free as possible: water coming from softeners, rain or even reverse osmosis (for example, the one sold for irons).
It is good to fertilize the orchids regularly with a specific product. The ideal is to always add a small dose of fertilizer both to the water we use for irrigation and to the one we use to vaporize them.
In nurseries and garden centers you can find very good products for fertilization, such as for example the fertilizer for orchids, specific fertilizer made with concentrations of NP K (nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium) ideal for the needs of orchids.
The fertilizer for orchids must have a ratio 30 10 10 in the first phase of spring, when new branches and new vegetative parts develop from the plant. During the rest of the year use a 20-20-20 fertilizer instead while for flowering and immediately after repotting the best fans of these plants usually recommend a 10-30-20.
In addition to nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium for these plants, calcium is also very important, to be administered throughout the year in the form of calcium nitrate. The orchids we grow need, as in nature, a high atmospheric humidity, usually around 60%. Keep in mind that the higher the temperature rises, the higher the required humidity.
Therefore it is excellent to use electric humidifiers or spray the plant several times a day with sprayers. If we keep the plants outside we can also wet the floor where they rest so that the evaporation of the water maintains the ideal humidity in that area.
The Orchid is a particularly delicate plant and that, also for this reason, requires particular attention and dedication, but also simple tricks. For example, to prevent the fall of the leaves a considered watering is fundamental, which must not however become insufficient: this would in fact cause an arrest of the development of the plant with the consequent fall of the flowers.
The most striking disease of the orchid is surely the one characterized by the symptom of the brown spots that indicate the presence of Cochineals that can be brown or cottony: they are obstinate killer insects that must be struck at the origin to be eliminated starting from direct and targeted intervention. The first effective advice is to pass an alcohol-soaked cotton ball on the leaves.
The blue orchid is one of the most sought-after types of orchids in nurseries and flower shops. Many people love to give orchids of this color because they are beautiful and because it is a color that brings serenity. But which are the blue orchids that are most often given away?
Vanda coerulea is the blue orchid par excellence, known by all with the name of blue orchid for the color of its petals. It is an orchid of spontaneous tropical origin in India, Thailand and Burma that in Italy can be grown in the apartment or outside in the hottest months. In fact, the blue orchid needs outdoor temperatures of at least 10-18 ° C during the night and 20-30 ° C during daylight hours to optimally vegetate.
There are also some beautiful blue phalaenopsis on the market that are becoming popular in recent years because they enchant all flower lovers thanks to their unusual and so bewitching color. The blue phalaenopsis are unusual and rare to find but in reality they are obtained in an artificial way, or by giving the dye through the watering that gives the petals of the phalaenopsis a special color.
The blue of the phalaenopsis is more intense than the color of Vanda coerulea but unlike the latter, it fades over time and does not last. The blue color in fact, obtained in an artificial way, gradually disappears if we stop giving the dye to the plants. Very many people who approach the world of orchids and their fascinating world, ask the most experts what the types of orchids more cultivated. The most cultivated types, even if in technical jargon they would be called genera, are the orchids phalenopsis, the cymbidium and the vanda.
These three types of orchids they can be found in any well-stocked nursery and in almost all florists. They are available all year round and are ideal as a gift because they have a prolonged flowering, are equipped with exotic and fascinating shapes and colors and are indoor plants able to divinely decorate the house.
Phalaenopsis are certainly the most appreciated and sought after genus because of their very delicate and particular shapes, and for their long lasting flowering.Watch the video