Growing Vanda Orchids

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Growing Vanda Orchids

Vanda Orchids
Intermediate to warm growing
12 - 28 C (53 - 82F) 

These are some of the worlds most beautiful orchids and contain some of the rare blue orchids seen in cultivation today. They are naturally found in the Himalayas, Australia as well as some parts of New Guinea.  All of the Vandas are epiphytic and grow on the trunks or branches of trees, this allows their aerial roots free access to any moisture in the atmosphere. They can grow in to tall plants up to 3 to 4' high and are generally grown in either baskets or on cork bark with the roots hanging down. The flowers of Vanda are usually flat faced and usually appear round as the petals and sepals are of equal size. A well grown plant may flower two or three times a year and produce up to 3 or 4 spikes of 10 3 to 5 inch flowers which can last for over a month. Quite a stunning display can be achieved from a well grown collection of Vandas.

Vanda 'Meechai Blue'

Light requirements

Vandas thrive on sunlight and should be suspended from the greenhouse roof and positioned as close to the glass as possible. Vandas can take full sun but prefer the light to be intense but dispersed so as not to burn the evergreen foliage which surrounds the central stem. In the living room Vandas should be kept in the brightest window available and should be moved to other rooms as the seasons change to obtain the maximum light possible.

Watering requirements

Vandas like plenty of water during the growing season and if your plants are grown in baskets or on cork bark they should be watered every day from June through September. During the remainder of the year Vandas should not be allowed to dry our but kept evenly moist at all times. Once Vandas have flowered it is best to give them a mini rest of 2 to 3 weeks, during this period allow the plants to dry before watering them again - don't over do it though.

Feeding requirements

These orchids thrive on a balanced plant food and this should be applied every two weeks at half strength from June through September. Use a high potash feed again at half strength from September through Mid October and this will help harden the current seasons growth. From November through to the following June feed at quarter strength using a standard food but only feed once a month.

Re-potting schedule

These plants do not like to be disturbed once they have established themselves. Plants may look untidy after a couple of years due to the aerial roots but it is at this time that the are at their most likely to become highly floriferous. Re pot these plants sparingly otherwise you take the risk of no flowers

Compost

Vandas will appreciate being grown in either a basket or on a large piece of cork bark, this allows the swift drainage of water and the aerial roots to be exposed. If you are to be planting in a pot use a very open large grade pine bark mix - not compost. Again this will allow the free drainage of water and any aerial roots that grow should be allowed to grow outside the pot and not be trained back in to the compost.

Where can I buy Vanda Orchids

Here's some equipment you may find useful
Thermometers | Thermostats | Humidity Gauges

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