Orchid Care








 Basic Orchid Care

Orchids can make great house plants if you pick the right one for your home. Trying to grow a cool growing orchid, such as a Masdevallia (shown to the left below), in Florida is probably going to be a challenge! We suggest you grow orchids best suited to your conditions to avoid frustration.

 Masdevallia ignea
A cool growing Masdevallia

* The examples given here are for the most common types of orchids sold as pot plants. e.g. there are warmer growing cymbidiums, but most of the ones sold you will find are cool-growing.

* Many orchid genera are very diverse spanning different temperature ranges. For example, some dendrobiums thrive in cool conditions, while others require hot tropical environments. Don't assume that one size fits all.

* Some cooler growing orchids are advertised as warmth-tolerant. This means they can survive during occasional periods of warmer weather--it does not mean that you can grow them year 'round in warm conditions.

* Other factors, especially light, humidity and air movement also affect how well orchids do at particular temperatures. Experiment and see what works for you. 

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For ease, orchids are generally divided into three groups based on their temperature requirements as show below.
Pick the environment
that best represents your growing condition for the better part of the year.
For most residents in the US, temperatures of 65-75 degrees are generally preferred in the home and best suited to intermediate to warm growing orchids.

What is more important than the daytime high, is the lowest night temperature you can give your plant. For example if your night temperatures are always above 60 and daytime highs no more than 75, you are probably too 'warm' at night to grow cooler growing orchids even though your daytime highs are mild. Orchids need at least a 10 degree difference between night-time lows and day-time highs to thrive. Why? Because orchids make their food during the day through photosynthesis. If night temperatures are too high, they end up metabolizing this food--they need cooler temperatures at night in order to store, or save their food, in order to bloom.

cool growing cymbidium

Night temp low: 55F (12C)
Day temp high:  75F (24C)

e.g: cymbidiums, masdevallias, odotoglossums

intemediate odontocidium intergenerics

Night temp low: 60F (15C)
Day temp high:  80F (27C)

eg:cattleyas, oncidiums, miltoniopsis

warm growing phalaenopsis

Night temp low: 65F (18C)
Day temp high: 85F (29C)

e.g: phalaenopsis, vandas,
mottled-leaf paphiopedilums 













Now that you know the temperature range for the orchids you can grow,  the other important factors you will need to know about to grow orchids well:



 More orchids on our 
 houseplants blog

Quick Links:
-What to do when flowers fade
-Why won't my orchid bloom?
-How to buy orchids like a pro

-Can I grow orchids in low light?
-How do I water my orchids?

-Where can I buy orchids online?

Visit Our Other Sites:

-How to Grow Moth Orchids
-How to Grow Slipper Orchids