For first time orchid owners, the end of the initial blooming cycle can be confusing and disappointing. Despite following the simple watering schedule and making sure your plant received plenty of indirect light, your orchid blooms wilted and fell off. Assuming your orchid is dead, you label yourself with a black thumb and throw what’s left of your plant in the dumpster.
Sound familiar? Unfortunately, giving up on an orchid that appears past its prime is a common mistake among new orchid owners. Though the blooms may have fallen off, your orchid probably isn’t dead. In fact, it’s likely entering into a new phase of a perfectly healthy lifestyle. Just as trees shed brown leaves come winter—only to sprout new, green life in the spring—your orchid can bloom again with the proper coaxing.
Once your blooms fall off and your orchid enters the natural resting period, it might be 3-12 months before you see a bloom again. Luckily, this resting period is the perfect time to help encourage your orchid to rebloom.
3 Tips to Encourage Orchid Reblooming
Maintain Consistent Care
Just because your orchid isn’t blooming doesn’t mean your watering routine needs to change. Maintain the care schedule that has kept your plant healthy: three ice cubes per week, indirect light and a consistent temperature that avoids drafts. However, taking care of your orchid during its resting period can be more difficult to remember without beautiful blooms to remind you. If you find yourself struggling to keep up with your watering schedule, sign up to receive email watering reminders.
Keep an Eye on Your Spikes
Healthy orchid spikes retain their green color and are firm to the touch, while unhealthy spikes are brown, yellow or thin. Throughout the resting period, make sure you watch your spikes so they stay healthy and ready to bloom again. Allowing your spikes to become unhealthy or overgrown can affect your orchid’s ability to rebloom. Keeping an eye out for problems gives you the chance to intervene before it’s too late.
Trim Your Spikes to Conserve Energy
In order for your orchid to truly “rest” during its resting period, you might have to help it conserve energy. By keeping your spikes healthy and trimmed, you can help give it the energy boost it needs to rebloom. Use sterilized tools and cut green spikes down to one inch above a node. If your spikes are already brown, cut them off at the base of the plant and keep a close watch.
Taking proper care of your orchid during its “off” season is the best way to ensure your plant will live to bloom again. With just a little encouragement, the end of one blooming cycle can simply become the beginning of another.
Once your orchid loses its last bloom, it’s the perfect time to consider repotting. Download our free guide to learn how to repot your orchid in five simple steps.