basic orchid care?

i bought an orchid because it was in the dollar bin (regularly $13.99) no ID tags. other than filtered sunlight, what makes orchids happy? lee
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A total soak once a week and a container that has many ways of providing drainage and air. This before the time outside aka late spring to early fall. We keep ours outside now above the reach of slugs hanging in low branches.
<http://myorchidpots.com/
Bill
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wrote:

it's in a 3" square green orchid pot. i soaked it when i got it home. at what point does it need repotting? it has roots just coming to the edges of the pot now. i think it just finished blooming. is there a way to ID it from the leaves. not being much of an orcid fanatic, i can recognise that it's an orchid from the leaves, but thats about all.

i might lose it outside. it's pretty small.
lee
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Have a look about here.
<http://www.orchidspecies.com/
Bill
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news.net:

pretty flowers, but all i have is leaves. i thought it might be a butterfly orchid, but it doesn't seem to have a psudobulb, just roots. if i take a photo of it & put it online, do you think you could tell more by seeing the leaves? back in the late 70s a friend of mine had 3 cattleya that i 'babysat' for her for a year. i had no problems getting them to grow & bloom (she managed to kill them within 2 months of taking them back). the leaves on this little one look a bit like the cattleyas, but i wouldn't think they'd bloom when so small & no greenhouse around here sells orchids that aren't blooming (& i was mistaken last night. the original price tag on this little bitty thing is $19.99, so it must have had blooms) anyway, it's also in spagnum moss & coir in a regular 3" square pot, so i'll have to get it something more suitable. the greenhouse in Concord that used to have a lot of orchids changed hands recently & now there's mostly common houseplants in their greenhouse (with the exception of some lovely Nepenthes). lee
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Yes. We likely won't be able to identify anything beyond species, but just seeing the leaves can tell you a great deal about what sort of care they require.
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Toni
Hills of Kentucky
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wrote:

Do that. The leaves will give a good idea of the broad type of orchid it is.
I grow a lot of my orchids semi-hydroponically, but not all types are suited to it. And some like much more light and/or warmth than others.

The price may also depend on where you buy it. Trader Joe's near me sells phals, oncodiums or dendrobiums for as low as $7-8 dollars dometimes, while a nursery nearby sells seriously ordinary phals for an outrageous $50+

I have a bee-you-tiful Nepenthe sitting in my kitchen window. Love those things.
Boron
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He did, and I voted phalenopsis.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/redenigma/2642427733/in/photostre

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Toni
Hills of Kentucky
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wrote:

Eyup. I'd agree.
Boron
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On 7/5/2008 2:36 PM, enigma wrote:

This varies by the type of orchid.
I have two Phalaenopsis orchids (moth orchids) in my breakfast room greenhouse window. They are strictly house plants in my climate. They are potted in bark chips without any soil. I have to be careful to avoid getting water into the center of the leaves, which might cause the plants to rot and die.
I have a Cymbidium orchid on my patio. In my climate, it's an outdoor plant to be brought inside (a) only if we are expecting a record freeze or (b) to show off its flowers. It's potted in a combination of bark chips and my do-it-yourself potting mix. I squirt it with a hose 2-3 times a week.
Some orchids require cooler temperatures than are found in my garden, cooler than I can afford to provide via air conditioning during the summer (100F today). Others require temperatures and humidity higher than would be comfortable for me (humidity much higher than the 22% relative that we had at noon today). Some orchids require real soil; others grow in the leaf litter accumulated on the branches of trees. Some are strictly shade plants; others need some direct sun.
The most important thing is that some orchids are easy to grow by novices while others are difficult to grow even by experts. I suggest you take the plant to a full-service nursery (not a lumber yard or hardware store), have them identify it, and get their advice on caring for it.
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David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
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