Watering orchids in the Autumn & Winter

Summer is over and autumn isn't really around, so it's time to move on to different waterings from the summer season.

This post only concerns potted orchids (as sold commercially) type Zygopetalum, Phalaenopsis, Burrageara, Dendrobium etc.

So I wouldn't talk about the Aerides or the Vanda, orchids with aerial roots. If you need to learn about those types I suggest "100 Orchids for Florida" by Jack Kramer.

PS: Orchids in Partial Hydroculture (clay beads) be careful not to leave your orchids in rooms too cold or not airy enough. The risk of mold will increase drastically if it is not warm enough for the water to evaporate and if the aeration is not good.

Watering in cold seasons (Autumn-Winter) should be done with more attention than in warm seasons. It's less hot and wetter outside which produces climates where orchids go more dormant. Watering should therefore be more spaced out and the amount should be reduced. As a general rule, an orchid is watered when the substrate begins to dry in the center of the pot (to avoid mold). It is therefore done in accordance to your home's climate, if you keep it at a constant temperature you will have to set a regular watering rhythm but you need to be flexible as well.

Basics are: as recommend to me, 1 bath every 10 days, about 20-25min (for autumn winter).

The water should be at room temperature and the drainage in the pot should be perfect. No standing water should be at the bottom of the pot when it has been watered.

If your orchid is placed on a bed of clay balls to increase moisture, space waterings out in accordance, this is advantageous to the plant as well as re-hydration of the balls.

As for fertilizer, once a month is enough even with a tiny bit of fertilizer. Fertilizer application will have to be repeated more often from spring on, to give the plant the desire to grow. But in the fall-winter it is dormant.

If you are concerned that the watering and fertilizer supply is too little during the winter, it is because you need to give the orchid a rest period.

Enjoy your orchids!