Orchids, the most prevalent household plant developed by hobbyists around the world, belong to the largest plant family. Orchids, one of the most wonderful flowers, are grown by gardeners for the pleasingly fragrant flowers. Orchid plants come in a broad variety of types and colors to fit almost any garden or home environment and if desired any person can grow orchids. Orchids are important commercially in the floral industry and also for there fragrance in the perfume industry. Most of us know Orchids for there beautiful blooms in the garden or home.
Orchids produce many hybrids that are naturally occurring as well and bred by enthusiasts. Most are also unaware of their spectacular history and the passionate efforts which have gone into finding, cataloging and creating the orchids which we enjoy today. In the 1800's the first orchid hybrids was created and hybrids are still being produced to stock hobbyist around the world. In the early 1800's Dr Salisbury studied the germination of the orchid and from this a lot was learned that helped the hobby and industry to build up and supply the market with a sustainable supply and enable more investment in the development of the Orchid trade. In the early 19th century there were only about seven species of exotic Orchids grown in botanical gardens in Paris and Berlin. The Vanilla Orchid was the first to enter Europe in 1510.
The two most commonly grown and sought after Orchids are the Phalaenopsis and the Dendrobium. Phalaenopsis orchids have hundreds of flowers in a cluster that are long lasting and are rather easy to grow. These Orchid flowers are favorites at weddings and in floral displays and can be colorful in pinks, yellows and stripes. These are native to the Philippines and have become a very popular house and garden plant. The Dendrobium is the second largest orchid genus and has over a thousand species. These Orchids can be found in Northern India, South East Asia, Australia and Polynesia. Dendrobiums typically grow near the equator in tropical conditions, although some grow in climates with dry winters. Dendrobiums can be easy to grow; it is rather difficult to get them to bloom regularly.
Orchids are not as difficult to grow as many gardeners believe if they are supplied with the essentials that plants need to thrive. The most important is light, as with any plant Orchids require the proper amount of light to grow and set blooms. Water and humidity is also very crucial for Orchids and must be provided consistently too prevent drying especially if a soil less mix is used, Temperature is very important as many Orchids will thrive at room temperature but need cooler nights to set blooms.
Orchids love light and water but they must be provided in the proper amounts. Lighting should be bright and filtered and not in the direct sun. A semi shaded area in the garden or bright window sill will work best. Moisture is very important and this is an area that can cause problems with growing Orchids. Orchids are grown in a mix that contains organic matter like bark and plant fiber and it needs to be checked often to prevent drying. When watering make sure not to leave standing water, this will thwart rot and fungus. Use a commercial liquid Orchid fertilizer during watering to keep the Orchids in top shape so they bloom well.