Do you toss out your orchid plants after they stop blooming indoors? In this post you’ll learn how to grow orchids on trees, and it’s not that difficult to do. Don’t throw those tired orchids out!
Orchids in pots seem to be in every garden center during the spring months and they add a pop of tropical color to your home! Once the blooms have fallen, are you tempted to toss? The orchid plants are still living and can re-bloom, but in my experience it’s best done outside. You don’t need to live in the tropics, but with the right spot and care you CAN INDEED have your orchids bloom again year after year!
Welcome to my garden, or a small part of it actually. Our orchid garden is in full bloom at the moment, as it indeed is in the spring. Besides, this portion of our garden is filled with birds that are singing and nesting! A veritable paradise indeed and since we have built our entire garden from scratch it’s something to be proud of! See how it looked after a devastating hurricane HERE.
If you’re thinking about taking your potted orchid outside, first and foremost, you should learn more about your zone. Most orchids can be revived and rescued for more blooming if you use common sense about your habitat! Not sure if a full orchid garden like mine would thrive in areas that are snow capped. If you have a mild spring and summer season you definitely should experiment and possibly be able to grow orchids on trees!
Above is the side of our home, an area that has a fence dividing us from the neighbor’s property. We have about 3/4 of an acre, with most of the open spaces behind the house. I sit looking at this area while on the patio under the cover of the overhang. Seeking not only quiet, but shade, I drink my morning coffee out here, and sometimes take my laptop outside to work. We wanted to create privacy and a nice view here as well and I think that’s been accomplished.
As you we clearly have a large collection of orchids! Looks like a lot, but even so we didn’t go out and purchase these plants all at once. They were all resuscitated from orchids that were no longer in bloom. Save the orchids I say!
Grow Orchids On Trees With These Easy Tips
Orchids are epiphytes, which means that they grow on other plants. You’ll often find them in trees in their native tropical environs such as rainforests. The orchids that we have had seem to do best in warm humid air. The surrounding garden can provide all the plant’s necessary water and nutrients. Nevertheless, orchids are not just for tropical climates and there are more than 200 species of orchid native to North America. You should be able to grow orchids on trees in zones 5 through 9. It’s important to note though that they likely will not survive once temperatures grow cooler than 50 degrees. Enjoy them during the spring and summer months and cover them when the weather turns cool.
In contrast to the beauty of the orchid’s flowers, the root or stem is rather strange looking. It’s these roots that allow for a symbiotic relationship with trees. We placed the orchids in the trees when they were out of bloom. The gangly roots will stick to the tree branches and that happens over time.
Hanging Orchids In Your Trees
Tie the orchid to the tree with either cotton twine, some twist ties or nylon. You can often find old nylon stockings at thrift stores and cut strips for hanging orchids in your trees. It may take up to a year for the orchid to attach to the trees. Attach the orchid in the spring and it will have the warm months to grow.
This particular orchid has attached itself to the tree and has been in the garden for several years. The stems are drooping down and the buds at the bottom will bloom soon. This is a tree that allows for lots of air movement and has the proper light conditions. Additionally the tree also has a rough bark that is for root attachment.
The south side of the tree is generally best suited for orchid attachment. You’ll want a shady spot, but an area that still gets plenty of filtered sunlight.
Keep a close eye on your orchid and the surroundings once you’ve hung it. In South Florida, we generally have enough humidity to keep the exposed root system moist. Depending on your conditions you may need to mist the orchid roots daily. Remember that once you’ve removed your orchid from the pot, there is no soil to protect the roots. You don’t want them to dry out and they will need time to adapt to their new surroundings!
When you grow orchids on trees the roots need just the basics of air and water. However, to enhance active growth you can help by fertilizing monthly during the warm growing months. Use a specialized orchid fertilizer applying to the roots with a mister.
Above all, do not remove any of the roots. You might harm the plant and make it weaker and susceptible to diseases. Have fun with it and enjoy the beauty of orchids in your garden! When the weather begins to turn cold at night it’s time to cover up the orchid for hibernation if possible. Alternately you can try prying the roots off the tree and potting once again, bringing the orchid in for a winter’s rest. Experiment with your orchids and enjoy!
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