Moth orchids

Bought my first moth orchid and am slightly confused by its growth. it only has one long stem where the flowers are and large bottom leaves.

that 12" inch stem. There does not seem to have any nodes. Does another pop up from the base? If so, how long does it take? its in a 4" inch plastic pot. HAve no idea when to water or fertilize, because it has no nutrients as far as I can see and of course no soil to see if it dries out. i do have it on a large saucer with pebbles and water for humidity and bright light. BTW, i heard that the blooms are long lasting. Not on this one...maybe a few days and then they wither just like pansy's or petunias.
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The blooms should last a long time, like three months. It should be watered when it gets dry -- like once a week. feel the weight of the pot to estimate moisture content. Fertilize lightly. Get an orchid fertilizer. Sometimes a stem will produce additional blooms, More often the first stem will die back and a new one will come from the base. An orchid grows slowly. The 4" plastic pot is a reasonable pot. It may be necessary to repot the orchid if it is not prospering. Pot it in similar medium.
Dick

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Boothbay wrote:

it
another
1. Usually, Phalaenopsis produces a new inflorescence once a year. The inflorescence emerges from between the leaves.
2. An information sheet on Phalaenopsis produced by the American Orchid Society can be found here: http://aos.org/aos/uploadedfiles/docs/culturephals.pdf An older, html version is here: http://www.taygeta.com/phalaenopsis.html They should answer most questions about fertilizing and watering.
3. You may have more luck with orchid questions at rec.gardens.orchids rather than rec.gardens
4. You might also consider purchasing an introductory book on orchids form your local bookshop. Despite massive cloning, most orchids are still expensive enough that the cost of a book is less than killing plants by trial and error.
Hope this helps
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Try this question on rec.gardens.orchids. And "Moth Orchid" is the common name. It is properly a Phalenopsis. Murri

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