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There are over 25,000 species of orchids. All of them are different in what they may require as far as care, fertilizer and the media that you use. The media is whatever you pot your orchid in, such as chips of bark, soil, or no media at all.

Orchids grow slower in the cool weather of fall or winter. They need less fertilizer in cool weather. Organic fertilizer is good to use because it contains potassium, iron, magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus. N-P-K percentages should always be 10-10-10 or 15-15-15. Fertilize once a week. This should be sufficient. During rapid growth months fertilize once a week always.

Water: This also depends on many factors, such as media, time of year, etc. If the media that you use becomes dry quickly, you should water once a day. If the orchid is planted in any kind of soil mixture once a week is enough. Orchids need less water in cool months.

Some orchids require light but not direct sun. They also need circulating air around them.

Scales are tiny insects that can attack any orchid. These insects take everything out of an orchid: all of its strength and all nutrients. There are two kinds of scales, soft and hard. Soft scales can be controlled with 2-3 treatments of an insecticide for scales on orchids. The hard scales need a systematic insecticide. Make sure that there are no ants on your orchids because scales are associated with ants.

When I bought my first orchid I was totally in the dark as how to care for this beautiful plant. I went to the library and checked out as many books as I could find on orchids. I also found that you can type in the word "orchids" in a search engine on the Internet and find a wealth of information about how to care for your new plant. Orchids are not as hard to care for as most people think. Do some research and it will definitely pay off with beautiful blossoms on your orchid.

The rewards of a properly cared for orchid are tremendous. You will have beautiful blooms on most orchids for at least two months of the year. After my orchids bloom I take photographs of them and put them in an album. Then I can look at them many times after the blossoms have died. I write underneath the photo the name and date purchase.

Properly taken care of you will receive many years of pleasure from this plant. I have heard of one Orchid that was handed down through a family for 42 years.