Orchids are a beautiful option for your home and contrary to popular belief aren’t the fragile flowers you might think them to be. Orchids are actually way more adaptable and tougher than most give them credit for—the underdog of toughness—and the myth they can only survive with extreme care and live in a greenhouse must go away.
There are many varieties of orchids and many easy-to-grow varieties for your home. Here is the most important thing to know about orchids—-
They Don’t Actually Grow in Soil!
If this is the first time you are hearing this information, take a breath and read further.
In nature, orchids are actually not found in the ground, but rather are attached to the sides of trees and branches with their thick root system. They adhere to the bark, almost like a parasite, and absorb the water and nutrients from the air, rain and whatever else. They are a hardy plant that has adapted to scarce water resources and creepily keeps hold of the trees and branches around it.
So what do orchids need when they are house plants?
What is the best soil for orchids?:
At home, you can still place your orchid in a pot, but instead of soil, place your plant in a pot filled with chips of bark, stones, loosely packed materials, tree ferns, etc. You want your orchid to have an ability to drain well and be aerated. You do not want ANY standing water near this plant as it will cause they roots to suffocate. When you water them, water thoroughly, and about once per week. Allow them to dry a bit in between waterings.
So what are my favorite orchid “soil” mixes?
This potting mix is a great option for all you orchid lovers and is one of my favorites. A combo of coarse bark, pearlite and charcoal this provides great drainage as well as increase the aeration for the plant. I’ve used this mix for all my orchids and all are still around today to tell the tale. Your roots will get enough air, and the mix allows them to dry between waterings (which is important). Before potting your orchid, soak the mix in water for 15 minutes or longer. It will keep the bark from drying out so quickly.
This mix is clean, not moldy and a great option for your home. I highly recommend the Sun Bulb brand.
- SuperMoss Orchid Sphagnum Moss Dried: If you don’t want to go the mixed route, you can always go the moss way.
Some people just love their moss and the Orchid Moss is a great and trusted brand. Sphagnum is a high-quality moss and one of the best quality for orchids I have seen or used. My mom is a moss woman and uses this brand quite loyally. It does a great job of retaining moisture for long periods of time, and you don’t have to worry about the plant drowning either. Another added benefit is it smells very nice. This product is good for all carnivorous plants.
- New Zealand Sphagnum Moss Grade AA+: Another moss product on the market, you can’t go wrong with this product or the moss above. The New Zealand moss is great at retaining lots of water to keep the roots moist, plenty of aeration, and more. When the package arrives it may seem small and not worth your money, but the volume greatly increases once you soak it in water. This is another very high-quality moss worth the expenditure, especially for your dear orchids. People love this product, and for a reason. It’s great!