Many know the orchid as a flower of beauty. The filigree plants with their detailed flowers represent passion and longing, which is why they are often given away among lovers. White orchids testify to pure love, colorful orchids of ambitious love.
About 1000 genera with 15,000 to 30,000 species are recognized by botanists. Orchids can grow on the ground, on other plants or even on rocks and stones. With the exception of the Antarctic, they grow on every continent.
Characteristics of the orchid
In contrast to other monocotyledonous plants, the orchids have some special features. For example, a pillar. The fertile stamen and the pistil grow together to form a single flower organ. Opposite the fertile stamen stands the so-called lip or labellum. This perennial usually differs significantly from the other leaves.
In general, the flowers consist of two mirror-like halves, also called monosymmetric or zygomorphic. In the 1000 genera there are only a few exceptions. From bud formation to flower development, they rotate 180 degrees. This is called "resupination". In some species, the peduncle even rotates 360 degrees.
The pollen grains of the orchid are grouped into so-called polling lines. The seeds are very small and usually can not be germinated without the help of symbiotic fungi.
Orchids are perennial plants and can, in theory, continue to grow forever. There are either one or several new shoots every year or a scion is constantly growing. However, researchers and botanists know very little about how old orchids can actually become.
This is important to keep in mind during care
There are a few differences in the proper care of your orchids, depending on the species you have. But even if you are not sure, there are some basic principles to keep in mind so that you can have some of your flower for a long time.
• Water: Less is more!
Orchids need relatively little water and fertilizer. In winter, it is often enough to water the plants once a week, in summer about two to three times a week. If you're not sure whether it's that time again, there's a simple trick: lift the orchid and pot. If it is unusually light, it needs new water. So she can dry out a bit between the irrigations. However, if you water them then it should be sufficient so that the excess water comes out of the bottom of the pot.
• Fertilizer: even less is more
Even less than water, orchids need fertilizer. The roots are very sensitive and can die quickly if fertilized too often. But without it, it can not thrive. Look best for special orchid fertilizer, whose dosage is well adapted to the fragile plant. The simple rule is: Discover a new leaf or a new shoot, so you can fertilize. This is the case every two to four weeks from spring to autumn, ie in the growing season of the orchids.
• substrate instead of earth
Orchids can not thrive with normal potting soil. You need a special substrate, which consists of a mixture of bark, peat, Styrofoam and other additives. Mostly they are already in such a mixture when you buy them. Every two to three years, however, the orchid has to be repotted. Then look for the use of high quality substrate.
• The right temperature
In general, one differentiates between three areas: cold, temperate and warm. Which of these applies to your orchid depends on its nature. Basically, a temperature of about 15 to 20 degrees, however, is fine and should not lead to major damage.