Thursday, March 1, 2018


Last year, I visited a local orchid nursery (Orchids by Hausermann in Villa Park, IL) on the occasion of their annual open house and sale.  Among my purchases was a beautiful yellow Cymbidium. I had owned two Cymbidiums in the past, but had to discard them due to a scale infestation. (I have learned, the hard way, that it is best to get rid of plants with scale.  This doesn't mean I always do; as a matter of fact, I have rescued both my much loved Monstera deliciosa and my ZZ plant from scale, but it wasn't easy.)

 My yellow Cymbidium as purchased 
last February. It had two bloom stalks.

Another view, from Feb. 2017, at night

So I bought this plant wondering if, after the blooms faded, I'd ever see it bloom again.  Orchids are finicky, I thought. I haven't been the most diligent of plant caretakers, especially these past few years.  But the care sheet made it seem simple enough: Let the plant spend the summer outdoors in dappled light.  The cooler night temperatures as fall approached would encourage rebloom.

Did I do that? No, I didn't. I left the plant in my sunroom.  I repotted it after the flowers died. I used the special Cymbidium mix I bought for it, but I didn't put it outdoors.  I fed it a couple of times when I remembered.  But I kept it indoors. My sunroom does undergo a natural cool down at night. In the cool months, I keep the heater set at 60 degrees Fahrenheit.  During the day, the sun warms the room to at least 70 degrees, and oftimes warmer.

The results:

The Cymbidium on Jan 30 of this year, with three bloom stalks

Close ups of the blooms and buds.

I have to admit that I don't know if the plant bloomed again because it liked my conditions, or because of the professional care it received previously. Next year will be the test.  I plan to repot it again after the blooms fade. I'm not sure when that will be. The plant started blooming in January, and is still going strong in March. 

No comments: